Credo in Deum Patrem omnipotentem; Creatorem coeli et terrae.

Credo in Deum Patrem omnipotentem; Creatorem coeli et terrae

Apostle’s Creed Responsive Recitation

Latin is a beautiful language.  At Messiah Lutheran, we are fortunate enough to have a member that speaks it well.  The amazing thing about this langauge is that many of our modern English words have their roots in Latin, so that as we listen to it, we can often times pick up what’s being said.  We plan to recite the Apostle’s Creed responsively using the Latin language for Reformation Sunday (the language in which it was originally recorded).  Here’s our script:

Pastor: We will now recite the words of the Apostle’s creed responsively, together with the Latin translation, the language in which the creed was originally recorded.


Lay Reader: Credo in Deum Patrem omnipotentem; Creatorem caeli et terrae.


Congregation: I believe in God, the Father Almighty, maker of heaven and earth,


Lay Reader: Et in Jesum Christum, Filium ejus unicum, Dominum nostrum; qui conceptus est de Spiritu Sancto, natus ex Maria virgine; passus sub Pontio Pilato, crucifixus, mortuus, et sepultus; descendit ad inferna.

Congregation: I believe in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord, Who was conceived of the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried.  He descended into hell.

Lay Reader: tertia die resurrexit a mortuis; ascendit ad caelos; sedet ad dexteram Dei Patris omnipotentis; inde venturus (est) judicare vivos et mortuos.

Congregation:  The third day, He arose again from the dead. He ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of God the Father Almighty, From there He will come to judge the living and the dead.

Lay Reader: Credo in Spiritum Sanctum; sanctam ecclesiam catholicam; sanctorum communionem; remissionem peccatorum; carnis resurrectionem; vitam aeternam. Amen.


Congregation: I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy Christian church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and life everlasting. Amen.



4 thoughts on “Credo in Deum Patrem omnipotentem; Creatorem coeli et terrae.”

  1. Cool idea! Just one historical correction…the Apostles’ Creed was actually first recorded and recited in the common or “Koine” Greek of the Roman Empire. Latin was the language of the government, while Greek was the language of commerce and the common people. By the time of Luther and the Reformation, however, the Apostles’ Creed (as well as the liturgy and the Bible for that matter) was recited in Latin, since Latin had become the language of the church.

    Luther championed making God’s Word and worship accessible to the people, who by his time largely no longer spoke Latin, but German (at least in his region). He brought the ancient Latin Mass into the language of the people by drawing up the “Deutsche Messe” or “German Mass”.

    Well done on bringing out the spirit of the Reformation for Reformation Sunday by using our common language of English to confess the Christian faith alongside the ancient Latin language of the church from centuries ago!


  2. I am not quite clear about the translation of the words “sanctam ecclesiam catholicam” to become “the holy Christian church”. Instead, “the holy Catholic church” appears to be more correct, even on the face of it. Did Luther have to destroy this and “create” his own creed?


    1. I think your translation is correct. Luther did not write the Creed. At some point in time the word “Catholic” was changed to “Christian” for obvious reasons. I don’t know when or who made the change. Perhaps some other readers more knowledgeable than I might want to weigh in.


Comments are closed.