"Is Bible Reading Necessary for Salvation?—Undoubtedly the Divine Scriptures have been given to the whole Church and to all the children of the Church for their instruction. The Bible is certainly an ordinary and universal means of instruction, but at the same time there is no universal precept, either divine or apostolic, that all the faithful—every man, woman and child—should personally read the Bible. Heaven is open to illiterates. It is the doctrine of the Bible that matters, not knowledge of the letter. Those who teach religion—the pastors of the Church—should know the Book, but the faithful may, according to circumstances, know and live the faith which the Bible teaches without having spelled one sentence of its pages. Even in this present age of paper and of printing numberless Catholics live admirable and even sublime lives of faith, hope and charity without any direct reading of Holy Writ. They nourish their minds with the substance of the Bible through the liturgy of the Mass, through the mysteries of the Rosary, through the prayers which they know by heart. And through the sermons which they hear. Just as in countries which have an old traditional culture illiterate peasants can have an exquisite refinement of soul and manners, so also bookless peasants who have lived in the stream of Christian tradition can have all the grasp of faith and right living which are necessary for any, even the highest, degree of sanctity (cf. § 3i).
A Catholic Commentary on Holy Scripture (London: Thomas Nelson, 1953), p. 11.