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Mary Messonnier wrote:

Hi, guys —

I am a 50-year-old Catholic from the United States trying to increase my knowledge of the Bible. My husband just bought me the Daily Bible in chronological order. It is the New International Version. I don't see an imprimatur in it.

  • Is this agreeable with the Catholic Church?



  { Is the New International Version (NIV) Bible agreeable with the Catholic Church? }

John replied:

Hi Mary,

The New International Version (NIV) is a perfectly good translation however, like other
non-Catholic Bibles, it is missing seven books from the Old Testament.

In many ways, the NIV is superior to the New American Bible which is the most commonly used Catholic translation.

The best Catholic Bible that's written in English is the Revised Standard Version — Catholic Edition. It's put out by Ignatius Press and also by Scepter Press.

Don't confuse the Revised Standard with the New Revised Standard. The latter is very faithful to the original Greek and Hebrew texts, however, it get's into the politically correct use of
"inclusive language", hence it's politicized.

You are fine with the NIV so long as:

  • you realize that when you read the Scriptures, it must be read in the context of the Church's Teaching, and
  • read the other seven books which are part of the canon of Scripture for Catholics

I'd also look out for the study notes your Bible may include. While they can be insightful, they are not necessarily Catholic and may indeed be contrary to Catholic teachings.

Ultimately, the best Bible translation is one that you'll read, so start reading and get into a good Catholic Bible Study.

John DiMascio
[Related posting]

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