~from Earth Times
A recording of Pope Benedict XVI reciting the Rosary in Latin is to go on sale as a four-CD box set, the Vatican announced Tuesday. "It was born as an answer to listeners and from several Catholic radio stations," Vatican Radio director, Father Federico Lombardi, said explaining the initiative.
Benedict's predecessor, John Paul II, on several occasions recited the Rosary live on Vatican Radio, providing the faithful with "great consolation" while "facilitating their prayer and devotion" Lombardi said.
However, John Paul stopped the practice as his health grew frail, and while tape recordings of the late pontiff's recitals exist, listeners were eager to hear versions of the Rosary by Benedict after his election as pope in 2005, Lombardi said.
According to Lombardi, who is also the papal spokesman, Latin was chosen because it is "most easily understood for the Rosary" and the universal language of the Catholic Church.
The decision also appears to be in line with Benedict's attempts to revive the use of Latin since he began his pontificate.
The pontiff last year eased restrictions for priests who wish to celebrate the Latin Mass and last week the Vatican launched a Latin version of its website.
The Rosary mostly consists of repetitions of the Hail Mary, a prayer in which the faithful ask Jesus' mother for her intercession with God, while focusing on different phases of the life of Mary and Jesus.
The CD box set will initially be available from the Vatican official bookshop on St Peter's Square at a cost of 15 euros (23 dollars).