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Curt Emich wrote:

Hello,

  • I have sometimes wondered why it is taboo to name your child Jesus in most of the Christianized world?

In most Hispanic countries it's OK.

  • Do you have any insights into why things turned out this way?

Thanks,

Curt Emich
Annapolis, Maryland

  { Why is it taboo to name your child Jesus in most of the Christianized world? }

Mary Ann replied:

Hi Curt,

The Spanish have always had a very incarnational approach to the faith, thanks be to God, and a very familiar way with God.

You might say that we do name our children after Jesus — Joshua is a variant of His Name.

Mary Ann

John replied:

Hi Curt,

Thanks for the question.

Hebrew has no vowels. Hence the Hebrew consonants that spell out Joshua are identical to those that spell out Jesus. The Hebrew name, acy could be pronounced:

  • Yeshua
  • Yashua, or
  • Yoshua.

Jesus, comes from the Hellenized (Greek) name, Iesou.

That said, I don't know that it is accurate to say Westernized cultures don't use the name.
Spanish-speaking countries are indeed part of Western Culture.

  • Did you mean Anglicized countries?

John D.

Curt replied:

HI John,

Yes, I meant most of the Christianized world with the exception of the Hispanics, who are obviously part of the Christianized world.

Thanks for the answer!

Curt

Fr. Nick replied:

Dear Curt,

Thanks for the question. The answer is simple. There is no prohibition to naming your child Jesus. In the Hispanic cultures it is pronounced Hey-zeus.

If the family feels it is an appropriate name, they are free to name their child Jesus.

This would be similar to a Muslim family naming their child Muhammad.

Fr. Nick

Curt replied:

Hi Fr. Nick,

Thanks for the reply!

Curt

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