POPE-POURRI: 'Light' news items, anecdotes about Pope Benedict now

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@Andrea M.@
00Thursday, March 8, 2007 5:03 PM
THANKS TERESA!!!!
Dear Teresa,

I myself had actually briefly pondered whether to put the article in "Readings" or not.

This would seem to be an excellent solution!!!

Andrea
TERESA BENEDETTA
00Friday, March 9, 2007 4:51 AM
NEW VACATION SPOT FOR POPE THIS YEAR?

A view of Ampezzo Cadore and the surrounding Dolomites.
Click on thumbnail for full picture.



Location of Belluno province in Italy (green-shaded area).

This time last year, there was speculation about a new summer vacation spot for Pope Benedict XVI - a ski resort area nearer Rome than Les Combes in Val d'Aosta. But he ended up going back to Les Combes anyway.

Now, it is thought he may be going this year to Ampezzo Cadore, in the Dolomite Alps of northeastern Italy (Val D'Aosta is in the northwest) in the province of Belluno, John Paul I's home province.

On a lead from Ratzigirl in the main forum, I found an online site called Discovery Alps which carried the story today, saying it was first reported in Gazzettino del Nord yesterday.

A Vatican delegation has reportedly visited Cadore to scout out the area and has met with local church officials, forest rangers and law enforcement officers.

John Paul II spent 6 vacations in Cadore, and this July will be the 20th anniversary of his first vacation there. [I have not been able to find out the exact relation between Ampezzo Cadore and Cortina d'Ampezzo, Italy's most fashionable ski resort; I get the impression Cadore is the original town on which Cortina depended. But the story also mentions a place called Lorenzago di Cadore, which is the place where Benedict will be arriving if he does choose to vacation here this year.]

The news report also says that the Veneto region (within which Belluno is located) has approved 20-million euros to finance a documentary called "The paths of God: Karol Wojtyla and the mountains of Cadore" to commemorate not just the late Pope's visits to the region but also to serve as a tourism-promotion film.

P.S. Lella on her blog carries the story from Gazzettino del Nord of March 6. The only additional detail from it is that the Vatican reconnaissance team was in Lorenzago last Thursday.

[Modificato da TERESA BENEDETTA 09/03/2007 4.57]

TERESA BENEDETTA
00Friday, March 9, 2007 1:19 PM
MORE HABERMAS FALLOUT
When, if ever, will the English-speaking world comment on the Habermas 'response' to the Regensburg lecture? Sandro Magister in his blog today reports on a reaction fron an Italian philosopher.

After referring to Cardinal Ruini's March 2 opening address to the VIII forum of the Cultural Project of the Italian bishops conference (Ruini's last public address as president of the CEI), Magister notes that someone else came to that forum with a reply to Habermas:
.

Ruini's audience was composed of more than 200 scientists and Catholic intellectuals who took part in the two-day discussions.

Among them was the philosopher Vittorio Possenti, professor of political philosophy at the University of Venice. And he came to the Forum with a text that fiercely refutes some positions taken by Habermas in his Neue Zuercher Zeitung article of Feb. 10, 2007. With various references to Kant, to whom, not incidentally, Ruini had devoted the final part of his own lecture.

Avvenire yesterday, 3/8/07, published a synthesis of Possenti's text but it should be read in its entirety.

Possenti disputes that Habermas's proposal of an alliance between faith and post-metaphysical reason could overcome the 'defeatism' that is at the heart of post-modern thinking.

Post-modern thought, he says, is 'too weak' because it is self-limited to the fallible results of science, regarding it impossible to know what 'being ' is, and therefore, taking no account of the 'why' and the 'what for' of existence.

Possenti says it is just like Kant's own idea of 'pure reason' which is incapable of functioning following its own instructions. "If there is a hospice or hospital for failed reason in the great beyond," Possenti remarks, "we can imagine that Kant's 'pure reason' lies among the afflicted."

Magister then provides a link to the full text of Possenti,
“Metafisica o postmetafisica? A proposito del dialogo tra ragione secolare e ragione religiosa” (Metaphysics or post-metaphysics: On the dialog between secular reason and religious reason), which is found only in Italian.


==============================================================

One has to wonder if there has been any contact between Benedict XVI and Habermas after Sept, 12, 2006. I still fondly imagine the Pope reading Habermas's NZZ article, and then, chuckling to himself, lifting the phone to call him, "I was reading what you wrote, and I thought...."

[Modificato da TERESA BENEDETTA 09/03/2007 19.13]

@Andrea M.@
00Friday, March 9, 2007 7:12 PM
I am posting this light-hearted item here, because, in my opinion, it does not quite fit into "BOOKS". If we have seen this already, I do apologize:

08/03/2007

Pope tried to stop concert by Bob Dylan

By Malcolm Moore

The Pope tried to stop Bob Dylan playing for the late John Paul II because he feared the musician was a "prophet" whose beliefs were at odds with the Roman Catholic Church.

In a new book of memoirs about his predecessor, Pope Benedict recalls the events of the World Eucharist Congress at Bologna in 1997, a gathering of 300,000 young Catholic pilgrims who were to be exposed to the singer's iconoclastic songs and their "completely different" message.

Pope Benedict wrote: "The Pope appeared tired, exhausted. At that very moment the stars arrived, Bob Dylan and others whose names I do not remember.

"They had a completely different message from the one which the Pope had.

"There was reason to be sceptical - I was, and in some ways I still am - over whether it was really right to allow this type of 'prophet' to appear."

Pope Benedict is known to have a strong dislike of popular music.

Last year, he cancelled the Vatican's Christmas fundraising concert and banned guitars from Mass.

Six years ago he labelled rock and pop music "anti-Christian".

At the event in Bologna, Dylan performed four songs, including Knockin' on Heaven's Door, A Hard Rain's Gonna Fall and Blowin' in the Wind.

A visibly frail John Paul gave a long sermon based on Blowin' in the Wind.

He told the young Catholics: "On the road of music this evening, Jesus met you. A representative of yours said on your behalf that the answer is blowing in the wind.

"Yes, it is true. On the wind there is the voice and breath of the Holy Spirit."

He added: "You asked me: how many roads must a man walk down before you can call him a man? I answer you: just one. One only. It is the road of a man. And this is Jesus Christ, who said 'I am the way'."

After his performance Dylan went to greet John Paul on the podium to roars from the crowd. The conference proved a great success and John Paul's popularity with young people rocketed.

Dylan became a born-again Christian in 1979 and released two albums of religious songs.

Pope Benedict's new book, John Paul II, my loved predecessor, is published by Edizione San Paulo and will be sold with Famiglia Cristiana, the Catholic newspaper, next week.

Source: telegraph.co.uk
TERESA BENEDETTA
00Friday, March 9, 2007 7:23 PM
HELLO, CADORE!
Lella has just posted an ANSA bulletin confirming that the Pope will be vacationing elsewhere this summer (See yesterday's post above). Here is a translation:



(ANSA) - BELLUNO, 9 MAR - Pope Benedict XVI will spend his summer vacation this year in Lorenzago di Cadore, Belluno province, from July 9-28.

The confirmation was announced by the Police Prefect of Belluno, Francesco Faggiano.



==============================================================

It just occurred to me - he will be much nearer in Cadore to the place where his mother's family originated from in the Pustal valley of the South Tyrol. Let me check distances.

Meanwhile, the Italian site that comes up on a search for Lorenzago di Cadore appears to be full of ski club news.



This is a picture of how their major peak looks like in March 2007.

The town itself has just started a website and gives us the following information:

Lorenzago di Cadore (ZIP code 32040) belongs to the province of Belluno and is 56 kilometers far from Belluno, that is the Chief Town of the homonymous province.

Lorenzago di Cadore has a population of 578 inhabitants and a surface of 27,6 square kilometers thus showing a population density of 20,94 inhabitants per square kilometer. It rises 883 metres above the sea level.

The City Hall is located in Via Faureana 117, phone ++39 0435 75001, fax ++39 0435 75001.

Population: The municipality of Lorenzago di Cadore had a popolation of 646 inhabitants accordingly to the results of the national census made in 1991. After the national census made in 2001 the population was 578 inhabitants, thus showing during the years 1991 - 2001 a percentual variation of -10,53% inhabitants.

The inhabitants are distributed in 258 families with an average of 2,24 people per family.

The place: The territory of the municipality lies between 683 and 2,581 metres above sea level. (Average altitude 1898 meters, roughly 6,100 feet).



Views of Lorenzago, seen from the neighboring town.

Additional details about the Pope's stay:

Officially, the Pope's hosts in Lorenzago are the Bishops of Belluno and Treviso. Benedict XVI will most likely stay at Villa Mirabello, guest house of the Diocese of Treviso, where John Paul II stayed during the 6 times he was in Cadore, recalled by a bust and a bronze plaque in front of the Church in Lorenzago.

He will take his walks along the panoramic route baptized the John Paul II Path, with its scenic views of the major peaks in the area- Montanel, Miaron and the Cridola group.

===============================================================

Paparatzifan, who lives in Venice, and Gabriella who lives in Trieste, should be very happy about this. Paparatzifan is often in Belluno because of her activities related to John Paul I.

[Modificato da TERESA BENEDETTA 12/03/2007 0.25]

TERESA BENEDETTA
00Saturday, March 10, 2007 8:01 PM
ACCORDING TO CARDINAL DSIWISZ...
In an interview (posted by Emma in the main forum) published today in Corriere della Sera, Cardinal Stanislaw Dsiwisz, Archbishop of Cracow, was of course asked mostly about John Paul II, but he was also asked about Pope Benedict and Cardinal Ruini. The whole article, translated, is posted in REMEMBERING JOHN PAUL II, but here are the parts that refer to Pope Benedict and to Cardinal Ruini:


Benedict XVI always speaks of John Paul II as 'my beloved predecessor" - and the affection with which he does so is quite striking. There has never been such a rapport between two Popes...
They always had a very close relationship, from the very beginning. When he became Pope, John Paul wanted Ratzinger to be with him in Rome right away. As a great theologian, with enormous prestige, he would help him to deal with the problems that the Vatican had at the time with theologians. And so eventually, through this great theologian, Wojtyla was able to dialog with the world of theologians, especially the Germans. They could not contest him because he was greater than all of them.

Ratzinger's affection is reciprocated by what the Poles feel for him. And they proved that when right in Wojtyla's own city of Cracow, they welcomed Pope Benedict even better than they had John Paul himself.


Cardinal Ruini has just left the helm of the CEI. What made Papa Wojtyla choose him?
There was great mutual trust and perfect collaboration between them, as the Pope had with Cardinal Poletti before that. Because he had great vicars in Rome, the Pope could rest assured about his diocese as Bishop of Rome. He chose Ruini even for president of the CEI because he judged him to be the best of the lot. He would not have chosen the weakest, would he? And over time, we have seen that he was not wrong at all.

TERESA BENEDETTA
00Sunday, March 11, 2007 4:03 AM
BELLUNO CELEBRATES POPE'S DECISION

Banner of the Lorenzago website is the winter look
of the Dolomite peaks that shelter the town
.




'We await him in the Dolomites' -
Benedict in the land of John Paul I


At midday tomorrow, all the church bells in the Diocese of Belluno-Feltre will peal to celebrate their hosting of Pope Beneidct XVI on his summer vacation this year.

The announcement was confirmed simultaneously today in the vAtican, in Belluno and in Treviso - the Pope will be in the John Paul I's native province from July 9-27. John Paul II had spent six summer vacations in Lorenzago.

Mons. Giuseppe Andrich, bishop of Belluno-Feltre said, "The pope will be in our land for a well-deserved rest at the vacation house of the Diocese of Treviso, where John Paul II also stayed each time he came here, starting in 1987. Since 2005, our diocese and the diocese of Treviso have been hoping, along with our province and the rest of the Veneto region, that we would once again have a Pope among us. So today's announcement gives us great joy."

He added: "On April 25, when we make our pilgrimage with the faithful of the Tri-veneto region to Rome for the bishops' ad-limina visit, we will bring him our personal and affectionate thanks for this privilege."

"We hope that the climate and the scenic wonders of the Dolomite region will allow Holy Father to recharge his energies and that our hospitality will show the appropriate respect and consideration for his privacy and during any meeting he may have with us."


JP-II in Lorenzago in 1987

He recalled the six times John Paul II came to the Dolomites: Inn 1987, from July 8-14; in 1988, from July 13-22; in 1992, when he was recovering from an operation; ion 1993 and then 1996. His last visit was in 1998, from July 8-21.

But John Paul-II's first bvisit to Belluno actually took place in 1979 when he went to Canale d'Agordo, birthplace of John Paul I, and said Mass at the stadium in Belluno.

[Modificato da TERESA BENEDETTA 11/03/2007 4.34]

TERESA BENEDETTA
00Sunday, March 11, 2007 11:00 PM
LONG LIVE THE POPE!
If you know the song, you will be happy to find all three verses of it here - I remember the first verse indelibly and half of the second, from a distance of at least 40 years since I last sung it at a Church event. If you don't, the music is available on the PDF link provided below.

In Catholic school, we celebrated Pope's Day every year in February - I think it must have been the Feast of the Peter, then - at which the college chapel was decked out in white-and-yellow flowrs and Church 'linen' and we all were given little falgelts of yellow and white, and at the end, we would all sing this rousing hymn!



Long live the Pope!
His praises sound
Again and yet again:
His rule is over space and time:
His throne the heart of men:
All hail! The Shepherd Pope of Rome,
The theme of loving song:
Let all the earth his glory sing
And heav’n the strain prolong.

Beleaguered by
By the foes of earth,
Beset by hosts of hell,
He guards the loyal flock of Christ,
A watchful sentinel:
And yet, amid the din and strife,
The clash of mace and sword,
He bears alone the Shepherd Staff,
The champion of the Lord.

Then raise the chant,
With heart and voice,
In Church & school & home:
"Long live the Shepherd of the Flock!
Long live the Pope of Rome!"
Almighty Father bless his work,
Protect him in his ways,
Receive his prayer, fulfill his hopes,
And grant him length of days!

The music can be found here.
www.ocp.org/files/Long-Live-the-Pope.pdf



Thanks to the blog UNAM SANCTAM, by a 25-year-old Chinese Malaysian who writes from far-off Penang, Malaysia, but whose blog is quite amazing because, among other things, he works to give it a visual component that you can tell he researches. And he has the most interesting comments and thoughts, as well.

andrew4jc.blogspot.com/

I am intrigued by Andrew, because Malaysia considers itself a Muslim country (although its population is really 1/3 Malay, 1/3 Chinese and 1/3 Indian - one of those historical-geographical oddities), and it is so non-Christian that I remember having to spend Christmas week in Singapore (when it was still part of a short-lived Federation with Malaysia) on an assignment, and for all that Singapore is a major free port and shopping center for Southeast Asia (some think better than HongKong), that Christmas was unmarked by any secular trimmings even [Lee Kwan Yew was president then, I don't know if his personal puritanism had anything to do with that] - not even at the historic Raffles Hotel where we were billeted.

And Andrew lives on Penang island, which is also a free port, and its top tourist attraction is a fascinating Buddhist monastery complex on a hill! So it's very intriguing when Andrew writes that he went with his grandmother to Church last Friday afternoon to say the Stations of the Cross, and there were about 500 people in the Church for the same purpose.

[Modificato da TERESA BENEDETTA 11/03/2007 23.03]

loriRMFC
00Monday, March 12, 2007 12:21 AM
Thanks Teresa for the snips of the interview with Cardinal Dsiwisz. To here Rocco tell it Papa Ratzi and JP II only had a working relationship...nice to hear from someone who would actually be in a position to know.[SM=g27828]

=============================================================
Hi, Lori...Long time no hear! About this relationship between the two, it may have started as simply a working relationship, but you don't meet with someone at least once a week (often twice), one on one for at least an hour, for over 20 years and remain just co-workers! Especially not with two people as personally warm-hearted and congenial as these two persons!...Rocco is a nice kid, but he succumbs to the temptation of wanting to sound like a Vatican insider (who really is, except perhaps Giorgio or Mietek if they chose to speak, which they won't) when - as I have often commented before - he doesn't have sources other than those any one who follows Vatican news daily would have. I hope he realizes it's dishonest - not a big sin, but I'm a stickler for journalists or 'news-dispensers' identifying their sources as much as possible and properly attributing what one reports or passes on.

[Modificato da TERESA BENEDETTA 12/03/2007 0.36]

loriRMFC
00Monday, March 12, 2007 4:06 AM
Thanks Teresa for replying. Very true what you have said, and I think that in one of JP II's books he calls Cardinal Ratzinger "a great friend." About Rocco, you are right. In the same post he tries to say that Papa Ratzi was "excluded" from JP II's room until after he had died. As if he were in the room too and could legitamely report this! I think trying to give people juicy gossip takes priority to him. Thanks again for your insight[SM=g27811]


[Modificato da loriRMFC 12/03/2007 4.07]

maryjos
00Tuesday, March 13, 2007 12:00 AM
Great quote:
"They could not contest him because he was greater than all of them"

True, true, true of then Cardinal Ratzinger - and now true of our beloved Papa Benedict XVI!!!! [SM=x40792] [SM=x40792] [SM=x40792]
[SM=x40792] [SM=x40792]
TERESA BENEDETTA
00Tuesday, March 13, 2007 2:36 AM
Caterina has just posted the cover(s) of a book called "Cari sacerdoti' which puts together Pope Benedict's exhortations to his fellow priests since he became Pope. The Vatican publishing house is to be commended for taking this great initiative.






The quotation is from the Pope's Q&A with the clergy of Val D'Aosta his first summer in Les Combes:

"The faithul expect only one thing of their priests: that they specialize in promoting man's encounter with God. The priest is not asked to be expert in economics or construction or politics, but he is expected to be an expert on the spiritual life."

BENEDICTUS PP. VI




I remember writing here once that every priest should stick a copy of one particularly striking address the Pope gave - I think it was one of those three addresses to the Swiss bishops last year - to their bathroom mirror so they could see it first thing in the morning and last thing at night. Well now, they can have all the Pope's words to them in a book just for them, his 'dear priests'....

By the way, since the spate on Benedict books does not seem to abate with time - on the contrary - I think that whenever there is a new Benedict book out (in whatever language - but except for books written about him, the likelihood that English editions will come out ahead of the European editions is slim), it should be reported as news first, in NEWS ABOUT BENEDICT or here in POPE-POURRI, depending on the nature of the book. (And nothing stop us from double-posting such items in the BOOKS thread as well....)

I am feeling very guilty because since the fall, there have been quite a few reviews of important German books on the Pope(and even a reissue of something he wrote in the late 50s) that I just haven't found time to translate....

And at this point, probably only Brigitte Wansing, in behalf of her boss, has anything close to a complete list of everything he has ever written for publication. I can't wait for the University of Regensburg's Ratzinger project and the Ratzinger Schuelerkreise's own planned Rome-based center for Ratzinger studies to come online and render the world this first important bibliographic service...

And a concordance, as well, right away, if possible! Computers should be able to assemble a first draft pretty fast, once all the texts are fed in. It's getting all those texts together that is a problem for any collector of Ratzingeriana at the moment.

[For those who may not be familiar with the term 'concordance', it simply means an alphabetical index of all the important words, personages and ideas found in a particular work on in a particular author's body of work - in which after each word/personage/idea, citations are given of where these words/personages/ideas are mentioned in the work or collected works of the author. I have had direct experience with a Concordance of Marcel Proust's great novel and with a Concordance very conveniently placed in a CD of Wagner's Ring of the Nibelungen - and I can't tell you how useful (and engrossing) it can be! I have been wanting to lay hands on a Dante Concordance or a Shakespeare Concordance but that will probably be in my next life. For now, I am willing to devote what remains of this life to following a Ratzinger Concordance, if someone will come up with it soon.]
TERESA BENEDETTA
00Tuesday, March 13, 2007 7:51 PM
ANOTHER 'APPRECIATION' OF BENEDICT
Aldo Cazzullo has an interview in Corriere della Sera today with the historian of the movement Communione e Liberazione, who has known and had occasion for close contact with John Paul I, John Paul II and Benedict XVI (before he became Pope). I am posting here the translation of what he says about the present Pope, at the end of the interview, and will post the translation of the full interview later.


Massimo Camisasca, historian of Comunione e Liberazione, and its 'ambassador' to the Vatican for 15 years, has a new book, Il vento di Dio (The wind of God)(Piemme, 110 pp., 10 euro), in which tells his own story and that of the San Carlo Brotherhood, a commmunity of priests founded by him and now found in 15 countries, from Kenya to Siberia.

Since when have you known Joseph Ratzinger?
At least twice a year he came to dinner at the quarters I share near Santa Maria Maggiore with Cardinal Angelo Scola [one of C&L's most prominent members]. He ate very little, compared to Papa Wojtyla who, before the assassination attempt, was a robust eater.

Ratzinger had and has the gift of expressing profound truths simply. Often, [don Luigi) Giussani [founder of C&L} would turn to him to be sure that the 'daring' of his formulations on Catholic doctrine did not stray beyond Church tradition. Ratzinger would think it out, and then reassure him, with the grace and the intellectual sureness that characteriezes him.

What was the relationship between Wojtyla and Ratzinger?
Ratzinger was very valuable to Wojtyla, who needed a rampart and point of reference. And the future Benedict XVI never hesitated to exercise that function with earnestness and loyalty whenever he thought it was necessary.

Il Corriere della sera, 13 marzo 2007
benefan
00Tuesday, March 13, 2007 11:49 PM

Journalist fined for Pope water theft stunt

Tue Mar 13, 2007 9:46AM EDT
BERLIN (Reuters) - A German journalist has been fined 100 euros ($131) after he filmed three artists stealing water from Pope Benedict's garden hose in Bavaria to sell on Internet auction site EBay.

The three men, clad in overalls and wearing masks, broke into the garden of the Pope's house in Pentling, a suburb of Regensburg, in August armed with as many as 20 old lemonade bottles, the journalist's lawyer, Jan Bockemuehl, told Reuters.

They were filmed in the act by freelance journalist Hubertus Wiendl, who was caught when the caretaker noted down his car registration number, he said. Wiendl denied any knowledge of the plan to enter the garden. The artists have not been tracked down.

"They barely managed to fill one bottle before being challenged by passers-by and driving off," Bockemuehl said.

He had wanted to call the Pope as a witness but this was denied by the presiding judge.

"I was sure the Pope wouldn't have wanted my client to be punished," he said.

[Modificato da benefan 13/03/2007 23.51]

TERESA BENEDETTA
00Wednesday, March 14, 2007 1:01 AM
A LOOK AT THE BOOK
The next best thing right now
to actually having a copy of
Benedict's book on John Paul II
is to see its Table of Contents.



Ratzigirl filed a korazym.org story
about the presentation of the book
today by Elio Guerriero, an editor of
Edizioni San Paolo, which published
the book. He provided the following
index:


Presentation

I In John Paul II, the mission and the person were one
20 years in history
His studies in philosophy
The way of the Church and the man
Mystery and person meet in the figure of the Pooe
The reality of the Church made visible in John Paul II
His life under the sign of the Cross
A magisterium of extrardinary density
Everything refers to God: Looking to the year 2000

II Faith as humanity's refuge: John Paul II's 14 encyclicals
The 'Trinitarian' encyclicals:
- The Son
- God the Father
- The Holy Spirit
The encylicals on the Church
The encyclicals on man
The dignity of life
The courage of reason

III Looking to the origin: The God who gives Himself
Presentation of the 'Roman Triptych'
Looking back

IV Our beloved Pope now watches over us
from the window of the Lord's house

Homily at the funeral Mass
On the vocation of priesthood
Bishop of Cracow
Shepherd of Christ's flock
He interpreted the Easter mystery for us

V "Let yourselves be surprised by Christ!"
(Cologne, 2005)
Remembering John Paul-II
Pilgrims in the footsteps of the Magi
Happiness has the face of Jesus

VI The first anniversary of our beloved Pope's death
Angelus and Rosary on April 2, 2006
His firm and straightforward faith (Homily on April 3, 2006)

VII Pilgrimage in the footsteps of John Paul II
(Poland, May 26-28, 2006)
To live the faith as a love affair with Christ (Warsaw, May 26)
- A song of gratitude to Providence
- Faith is an intimate relationship with Christ
It was neceessary to come to the place where he was born
(Wadowice, May 27)
With profound emotion, I celebrate the Eucharist on Blonie field
(Cracow, May 28)
- I wished to breathe the air of his native land
- Stay strong in the faith

Conclusion
We celebrate the election of my great predecessor
to the Seat of Peter (October 16, 2006)

================================================================

And here's a translation of the presentation text:


Faith and reason:
The Pontificate and holiness of John Paul II
as recalled by Benedict XVI

Ny Elio Guerriero

Beendict XVI has not written a history of John Paul II's pontificate nor an essay on the thinking of his predecessor. In a simple and courageous way, the new Pope has placed himself among the ranks of the faithful and other admirers who wish to express their regard and affection for John Paul II.

And to sustain that which has become, in time, veneration and recollection, he places in their hands some texts which are an invitation to venerate the Servant of the Servants of God, to imitate his courage and his faith, to persevere in prayer notwithstanding the buurdens that may fall on each of us.

This book puts together the texts that Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI dedicated exclusively to John Paul II, excluding the numerous references he often makes indocuments and speeches.

The material is divided into eight parts - the first four containing texts written by the then Prefect for the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith; and the other four, of texts written after he became Pope.

The intention is twofold: to promote devotion to John Paul II, and to show the firm yet tender relationship between our last two Pontiffs, which is an absolute novelty in the history of the Papacy and should be a great edification for the faithful.

The first text, from 1998, was a provisional assessment made by hen Cardinal Ratzinger of John Paul's Papacy in the 20th anniversary of his election. It was by no means exhaustive, but it succeeded in capturing the truly charismatic novelty with which Karol Wojtyla interpreted his Pwetrine ministry, and in which the supposedly cold CDF Prefect lapses into near lyricism.

He writes about the World Youth Day in Paris: "I have not found anyone who was not caught up in the atmosphere of this encounter of faith. Suddenly, to everyone, it had become beautiful to be Christian."

The two succeeding texts bridge the millennial transition and draw closer to the end of the John Paul's minsitry. The first is a penetrating look at the Magisterium of the Polish Pope through his 14 encyclicals whose dominant theme is God and man. And in the center of this duality is Jesus Christ and the Church - Jesus Christ, Redeemer of mankind, as the Way to the Father of mercy, in the Spirit which gives life. The Church with its sacraments and its doctrine is Jesus's way of speaking to man in all times, to remind him of his dignity which should be manifested with thr courage of reason and faith.

The other text, also from 2003, was the Cardinal's presentation of the "Roman Triptych," a poem in which the old Pope - with the aid of Michelangelo's images in the Sistine Chapel - sees the spring of life coming to us and then rising again towards its true end.

Cardinal Ratzinger wrote: "The contemplation of the Last Judgment, in the epilog of the second 'panel', is probably the part of the Triptych that will move the reader most. From the Pope's inner eyes emerges anew his recollection of the conclaves in August and October of 1978...The word 'con-clave' reminds him of keys ['chiave' in Italian], of the keys of the Kingdom that were placed in Peter's hands by Christ. To place those keys in the right hands - that was the immense responsibility of those days."

Two years later, John Paul II, after having interpreted for us the Easter mystery, 'is now at the window of the Lord's house" (funeral eulogy on April 8, 2005).

That is followed by the election of the late Pope's former associate, and it is he who comes down the Rhine by boat in Agust 2005 to meet the young people of the world gathered in Cologne.

Benedict does not fail to remember: "Arriving today in Cologne to take part with you in World Youth Day, I remember with emotion and acknowledgment the servant of God much loved by all of us, John Paul II, who had the luminous idea of calling together the youth of the world."

On the first anniversary of the Pope's death, Benedict seeks to summarize the life and evangelical testimony of the great Pope, in three texts dedicated to his memory (Angelus and Rosary on April 2, homily the next day).

He writes: "In his words and actions, our dear John Paul II never tired of telling the world that by allowing himself to be embraced by Christ, man does not diminish his humanity; if he adheres to Christ with all his heart, he will not lack for anything. On the contrary, the encounter with Christ makes life more passionate."

The following month, May 2006, Benedict XVI is in Poland, a pilgrim in the footsteps of John Paul II. And to him, he dedicates three addresses of great weight - in Warsaw, Wadowice and Cracow.

He says in Wadowice, at the baptismal font where the future Pope's life of grace began: " The most common program of a truly Christian life can be summarized in faithfulness to the promises made at Baptism. The theme of this pilgrimage, 'Stay firm in the faith' finds here its most concrete dimension that we may express in these words: stay firm on observing the baptismal promises. And a witness to such faithfulness was the Servant of God, John Paul II."

What I have described is a thrilling glimpse into a spiritual friendship that the personal reserve of both protagonists could not hide. This communion in faith, like that of many saints, is a way that attracts and leads to Christ, and invites us to open ourselves to Him who can fill up our life.

In the story of such an intense friendship, it seems almost out of place to look for specifics about the two Popes. Nevertheless, I find a particular significance in the binomial "Faith and reason" which was the title of John Paul's penultimate encyclical.

The vigor of John Paul's faith was matched by the rationality of the 'worker in the vineyard of the Lord', who has always been ready to give reason to Christian hope.

Together they collaborated and still do in the service of the truth, which is the love of the Father made known to us by His Son, Jesus Christ.

=============================================================

Elio Guerriero was an associate and chronicler of the great Hans Urs von Balthasar. His acquaintance with Joseph Ratzinger dates from when the latter joined Von Balthasar and other Vatican-II theologians, appalled at what their progressive colleagues were doing, to start Communio, the theological journal that upholds the 'hermeneutics of continuity.'

BTW, I love the cover picture they chose for the book. The expressions on the faces of the two Popes are uncannily identical, and JP-II even has a wayward forelock (though he had much less hair) a la PapaRatzi...

[Modificato da TERESA BENEDETTA 15/03/2007 3.04]

TERESA BENEDETTA
00Thursday, March 15, 2007 2:44 AM
BORGHESE'S BOOK: AN ITINERARY OF FAITH
We already know no Pope has ever written so much himself. But has any Pope ever had so many books written about him in the short span of less than two years? I daresay No. And as we get closer to his 80th birthday and his second anniversary as Pope, books by and about Benedict just seem to be piling up, though outside the the Jesus book, I really don't know what other English titles are in store for the anniversary. Meanwhile, Alessandra Borghese's book was launched in Rome yesterday...




"Catholics should not allow themselves to be intimidated by people like Corrado Augias [atheist journalist and co-author of a best-selling Italian book that sees Jesus only as a man] or Dan Brown. After a few years, the works written by these authors will fade from memory but the Gospels will always be there!"

Those were the words of Mons. Rino Fisichella, rector of the Pontifical Lateran University, who participated in the presentation of Alessandra Borghese's new book on Joseph Ratzinger in Rome last night, at the headquarters of Opera Romana Pelegrinaggi, which organizes pilgrimages.

"Sulle tracce di Joseph Ratzinger"(In the footsteps of Joseph Ratzinger) is, in effect, a pilgrim's guidebook to the places where Pope Benedict grew up and worked.

"To humanize the Pope", Borghese said, was one of the objectives for the book. "Very much has already been written about him, but not about his more human and personal side. So I have tried to share with the readers little anecdotes and storeies about Papa Ratzinger that will make him even more real, with all the joy and sympathy that he has at heart."

That is why, she said, she chose the cover picture which shows the future Pope as a boy of 5, with that sweet and decisive look that still characterizes him today. [And don't forget that heart-robbing smile, Ale!]

She says, the book will explain his warmth, his love for his people and his friends, that hidden and intimate side of the Pope.

Borghese said she was motivated by wanting to relate the man who became Pope to the land that gave birth to him.

"It's a book one gladly reads," said Mons. Fisichella. "Here one finds the stories, the places, the memories, the customs and traditions which helped form our Pope. And one speaks of faith, too, which the author herself rediscovered in 1998, experiencing a call from God. And every page is an expression of that faith which has three constant elements: the Eucharist, the Virgin Mary and the Pope as Christ's vicar on earth. The book is unique in this way."

Mons. Liberio Andreatta, for Opera Romana Pellegrinaggi, said: "Alessandra Borghese's book can be a guide for an itinerary that leads to finding Truth, faith, oneself, others, God. This, too, is the objective of our religious-cultural itineraries, of which the book 'The Bavaria of Benedict XVI' already constitutes one."

This earlier book, by French journalist Jeanne Perego, who has lived in Bavaria the past several years, was published shortly after the April 2005 conclave.

Andreatta said that "Along the highways of the world, our organization seeks to carry out in its own way pastoral work of evangelization and catechism."

He pointed out that the encounter with history, with culture, with religion and with art helps man to open up to the faith, and that is what happens in the Bavarian itineraries in the footsteps of the Holy Father.

"That part of Germany has now become one of the 'hot' destinations for Catholics," Andreatta said.

Also present at the book presentation were Mons. Georg Ganswein, Prince Emanuele Filiberto of Savoy, Joaquin navarro-Valls, TG5 director Carlo Rossella, Princess ira von Furstenberg, and several prominent names in Italian society.

[Modificato da TERESA BENEDETTA 15/03/2007 17.11]

TERESA BENEDETTA
00Thursday, March 15, 2007 11:35 PM
BAD 'KUENG' KEEPS TURNING UP
Can you believe this? Hans Kueng obviously gets a perverse pleasure about disparaging Benedict XVI whenever he can - gratuitously. His euphoria and consequent good will over the September 2005 meeting in Castel Gandolfo was alas, evanescent, and since then, he has not wasted a chance to run his 'friend' down. Here, he speaks as though he had been Joseph Ratzinger's psychiatrist and privy to his inner life!

Is this cowering frightened person he describes the Benedict who delivered the lecture at Regensburg and then went on to Turkey against all odds and all advice? The Benedict who has not been afraid to say home truths over and over to the Catholics of Italy, where the secular culture has become frighteningly dominant, but who trusts in the solid instincts of the 'grassroots' (after all, he's from the grassroots of Bavaria, himself) - the very persons Kueng now says Benedict is 'terrified' of?

But at this point, I don't fault Kueng so much for his biases - he can't help them; after all, look who became Pope - as for the absolute bad form of presuming to dissect the Pope's psyche in public.


==============================================================

Pope lives in terror of rebellion,
says former friend

Jennifer Green, CanWest News Service
Ottawa Citizen
Thursday, March 15, 2007



OTTAWA - Behind the rigid rule of Pope Benedict XVI is a man who lives in terror of grassroots rebellions, says a renegade theologian who was once his friend. ['Once his friend' is right! ]

After student revolts swept Germany in 1968, "he got more and more conservative, more and more frightened," says Hans Kung.

Pope Benedict now embraces a medieval idea of the Catholic church, rejecting such notions as relativism, or the idea that nothing can ever be absolutely right or wrong.

In contrast, Kung says, we should be asking: "What would Jesus do if he were Pope? I can't believe He would forbid the (birth control) pill today, or the ordination of women."

[And on what grounds might Jesus allow the pill? Because the world cannot feed the people it already has? Didn't He say, "Consider the lilies of the field...or the sparrows in the air.." God provides! Why then? so each one can do as he pleases - sex without responsibility or commitment? So women can put off having babies until they are 40 when their eggs are already old and subject to all kinds of chromosome abnormalities that bring down their chances of conceiving to 5%? What crap! And let's not even go into ordaining women.]

The 78-year-old Swiss priest and retired professor, talked, as he always does, about the unrequited love of his life, the Catholic Church. [But how can the Church 'love' him back when he wants to impose his one-man magisterium on a 2000-year-old institution? I am sure no one in the Church wishes him ill, but enough already with the sour grapes .]

And he discussed its Pope, his one-time friend Joseph Ratzinger.[It's probably the only thing that interests journalists about him now - his relationship, however tenuous with the Pope, and the fact that they can count on him to say very quotable soundbites placing the Pope in a bad light !]

Since Benedict's election almost two years ago, hundreds of reporters have contacted Kung, confident that he will say exactly what he thinks of the increasingly conservative papacy.

He did not disappoint, making the point that if the church does not reform, it could end up as a facade of rules and rituals, while it weakens at the parish level.

"The hierarchy can preach what it wants, but the people do what they want, and that is a disastrous situation," says Kung.

As he spoke, news was flashing around the world that Pope Benedict has no plans to ease the rules on priestly celibacy, communion for divorced Catholics, or anything else for that matter. He also called for more Latin in the mass and even Gregorian chants.

Not long ago, the Pope made it clear he does not care for guitars and popular music at church, nor did he approve of Bob Dylan's appearance at a youth day with Pope John Paul II.

Kung was in Montreal this week to discuss his book My Struggle for Freedom, in which he covers the first 40 years of his life. A companion volume to be released in September will cover the second 40.

In the opening pages, the book evokes a life of cheerful village Catholicism, a rollicking household of a brother and five sisters, and an energetic, self-confident mother who worked in the family shoemaking business all day.

The latter half grows more serious as Kung talks about serving on the Second Vatican Council, with none other than the future Pope Benedict.

Pope John XXIII hoped to bring a breath of air to the church, and many aspects of the church did change.

"Unfortunately, it was not a complete change, it was a compromise," says Kung, who has always mourned the lost promise of Vatican II. [And who robbed it of that promise in the past 40 years but Kueng and other self-declared custodians of its 'spirit' ?]

Not long after the council concluded, Ratzinger came to the 500-year-old Eberhard Karls University of Tubingen in Germany at Kung's suggestion.

"I said to my colleagues, 'that is the man who has unique qualities and I think he is just the best in Germany.''"

But a few years later, thousands of students revolted, some violently, protesting a government they saw as hypocritical and authoritarian.

Kung writes in his book: "What for me remained a temporary annoyance evidently had a permanent shock effect on Ratzinger. He didn't want to remain in Tubingen a semester longer." Father Ratzinger left for another university.

"To the present day, Ratzinger has shown phobias about all movements 'from below'; whether these are student chaplaincies, groups of priests, movements of church people, the Iglesia popular or liberation theology." [A phobia is "a morbid and irrational dread of something specific". Can anyone imagine Joseph Ratzinger, with his sense of joy and inner peace, 'morbid", or with his reasoned approach to everything, including faith, yielding to the "irrational"?
And the world is supposed to take what Kueng says about Ratzinger as the gospel truth? Remember, all this is in his new book. So as they both get to the threshold of 80, Rattzinger is coming out with a two-volume book on Jesus, and Hans Kueng is coming out with a two-volume book on Hans Kueng. Nice paralell
.
]

Not long after, Kung published the book that would change his career, Infallible? An Inquiry.

Eight years later, he was stripped of his licence to teach as a Roman Catholic theologian, although he remains a Catholic priest.


===============================================================

After all that, we can only pray, VENI, CREATOR SPIRITUS!....

[Modificato da TERESA BENEDETTA 18/03/2007 8.06]

benefan
00Friday, March 16, 2007 1:58 AM

Kueng's Comments on Benedict's "Phobia" about Movements

Obviously Kueng hasn't noticed how enthusiastic and supportive Benedict is about big movements like Communion and Liberation, Focolare, and others or lay religious groups like the Memores or the Schoenstatts.

Teresa's comment about the books Benedict and Kueng are publishing this year is very telling. Benedict's thoughts are on God; Kueng's are on himself. He is still the same arrogant, wanna-be star in the flashy red sports car that he was in his younger years.


TERESA BENEDETTA
00Sunday, March 18, 2007 8:37 AM
CHATTING OVER BEER WITH KARAJAN
Oh what a wonderfully gemuetlich thing to imagine! Here is a tidbit from Repubblica's coverage of Alessandra Borghese's book presentation last week and carried by Lella on her blog. The reporter singled out this anecdote from the book.

In the pub with Karajan

Two legendary figures, Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger and conductor Herbert von Karajan, sitting together in an old Bavarian pub, chatting about music, vacations, and 'how time flies.'

According to Alessandra Borghese's new book on the Pope, for years, the two met this way, like old friends in a very exclusive place, the pub at the monastery of Maria Eck in Bavaria.

The Ratzinger brothers came to the monastery of Maria Eck often and frequented the pub when they were there, Borghese recounts in her book. And on a number of occasions, they would find themselves sitting next to the famous conductor, who apparently liked to slip away to Maria Eck for a quiet time, leaving the hubbub of Salzburg during the summer festivals there which he directed, leading the Vienna Philharmonic for the opera presentations and other concerts during the Festival season.

[Georg Ratzinger talks about his appreciation of Karajan's conducting in the'musical interview' we posted here a few weeks ago.]

[Modificato da TERESA BENEDETTA 18/03/2007 8.38]

benefan
00Sunday, March 18, 2007 5:46 PM
Twinkle to the portrait of a cheerful, shy pontiff

Dalya Alberge
The Australian
March 19, 2007

MICHAEL Noakes must be the only man on earth who can suggest to God's emissary how he should stand and how high he should raise his hand in blessing.

The British artist found himself at the Vatican earlier this year doing just that as he got the Pope to stand still for him in his private quarters. "Please raise your hand, Holy Father, nearer your head," he heard himself saying. "Would you, Holy Father, move your right foot forward?"

Surrounded by leather-bound antiquarian books and a couple of paintings of saints, he was painting the Pope's first formal portrait. For Noakes, it was the ultimate blessing as an artist and as a Catholic.

Although he is no stranger to painting famous people -- previous sitters have included the Queen, Margaret Thatcher and Bill Clinton -- he was taken aback by this commission, partly because it had been so unexpected.

Noakes recalls how he visited Rome last year to unveil a portrait of the Archbishop of Westminster, Cardinal Cormac Murphy O'Connor. "At the end of the unveiling, a young Maltese monsignor stationed in the Vatican came over and said simply, 'Will you paint the Pope for us?"' The invitation was all the more surprising because the previous pope, John Paul II, had steadfastly refused to pose for portraits.

A year after the initial invitation, Noakes was contacted again by the Vatican and a date was set.

His informal brief was to portray Pope Benedict with his hand raised in blessing or greeting, and wearing his crimson cape with fur trim and heavily embroidered stole.

The artist turned up with his pencils, his drawing book, his paints and his brushes -- his gear, as he refers to the tools of his trade -- and was shown into the library. Getting himself prepared mentally, he sharpened his pencils, but within minutes the Pope was standing before him and Noakes was kissing his ring.

Noakes, who trained at the Royal Academy Schools in Britain, is represented in public collections including the National Portrait Gallery and the British Museum in London, as well as the Royal Collection. While the Queen gave him unprecedented access -- allowing him to shadow her and record her daily working life in detail for a year -- Pope Benedict did not grant him that luxury. When Archbishop William Levada, the Pope's head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, asked him how long he would need, Noakes replied: "Four, five or six sittings of 2 1/2 hours". But that wasn't possible.

"I'm a professional and I make do with what I'm given, although that's bound to affect what I can do. I dearly wanted more time," Noakes says.

The artist sketched feverishly, trying out different poses and expressions to take back to his studio. He could barely relax enough to make conversation and the Pope, who had no difficulty in standing still, did not ask him any questions about himself or comment on anything other than the portrait. The Pope's only suggestion was that the picture ought to show him with his mouth closed.

For Noakes, he came over as a slightly shy man: "I wanted to imply that. He also smiles a great deal, but it's an oil painting and is going to be around as part of the records for a long time. So I made him look cheerful, with a degree of gravitas and a bit of a twinkle."

The portrait, which measures 124cm by 82cm unframed, will be shown to the Pope at the end of April.

It was dispatched to Rome last week and will hang in the Vatican, in the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith's room. In London, Noakes will display a related oil study for the portrait in an exhibition by the Royal Society of Portrait Painters.

[Modificato da benefan 18/03/2007 17.47]

=Palma=
00Sunday, March 18, 2007 7:14 PM
RATZINGER'S YOUTH: "Nice, sweet, blond"
PALMA - I hope you don't mind. I transferred this story to ENCOUNTERS WITH THE FUTURE POPE, to go with all your previous postings about people remembering the Pope as they knew him before he became Pope. - TERESA

[Modificato da TERESA BENEDETTA 20/03/2007 0.49]

stupor-mundi
00Sunday, March 18, 2007 7:46 PM
Young Ratzinger's hair....
...That's strange, looking at young Joseph pics I used to think he had dark hair [SM=g27833]

[Modificato da stupor-mundi 18/03/2007 19.47]



STUPOR-MUNDI, I've likewise transferred your comment to go with Palma's story. I can't seem to copy your 'avatar, though! - TERESA

[Modificato da TERESA BENEDETTA 18/03/2007 20.40]

TERESA BENEDETTA
00Monday, March 19, 2007 12:49 AM
From Yahoo's German newsroundup site, this photo from
the German Post Office of the stamp they are issuing
to mark the Pope's 80th birthday. The photo was released
on March 14.




Here is an earlier story about the stamp.

Munich/Leipzig, February 8, 2007 – Giesecke & Devrient (G&D) has begun printing a commemorative stamp featuring Pope Benedict XVI at Wertpapierdruckerei Leipzig, one of its printing factories. The stamp was commissioned by Deutsche Post AG, who is issuing the stamp to mark the pope's 80th birthday. All told, 10.4 million of the new 55 cent stamps will be printed. Antonia Graschberger, a Munich-based illustrator, created the design used on the stamp.


I am trying to check if this is the first stamp they have issued on the Pope - Or did they issue one for his Bavarian visit...

[Modificato da TERESA BENEDETTA 19/03/2007 1.06]

TERESA BENEDETTA
00Monday, March 19, 2007 4:30 AM
AND HERE'S THE BOOK!
At least in its German edition - the original, since Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI wrote it in German. Online sites are now taking orders for the book, expected to come out April 11.

What immediately leaps to the eye,however, is that the cover does not carry Joseph Ratzinger's name. I thought it was essential that the book come out as written by Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI to make clear that it is a personal work of the present Pope and not an act of Magisterium. How can the publishers not abide by the authoris wish?

The second thing is I like the format size they chose, similar to the size of the Ratzinger books iussed by Ignatius Press.



448 pp. 14 x 21 cm
[approx 5.5 x 8.3 in]
Herder Verlag
ISBN-10: 3451298619
ISBN-13: 9783451298615

JESUS OF NAZARETH
From the Baptism in the Jordan
to the Transfiguration


Here's a translation of their online blurb:

What does Christianity have to say to us today about the fundamental questions of existence? The answer to that directly depends on the question: Who is Jesus of Nazareth? Was he just a great man or was he more?

All his life Joseph Ratzinger has occupied himself with Jesus of Nazareth, As Professor, as Bishop, as the topmost guardian of the faith, and now as Pope, he has sought to understand Him.
He started this book a few years ago when he was still a cardinal. After he was elected Pope, he has used every free minute to go on with it. This work represents the sum of a great theologian's life. It may well be the most personal book that Joseph Ratzinger - or, for that matter, any Pope - has ever written.

Benedict XVI is convinced that historico-critical reason and faith are not contradictory. On the contrary. But one must trust the Gospels. The Bible offers a true and existential testimony to faith: Jesus was not only a true man but also the Son of God. From this perspective, the historical facts worked out by critical research can open up a profound understanding of Jesus of Nazareth - deeper than it had ever been imagined possible before. And it will also lead to deeper insights.


*************************************************************



LA VERITA SULLA FAMIGLIA
(The Truth about the Family)


I hadn't noticed it before but on the home page of Osservatore's daily edition, they have been advertising this little book that the newwspaper put together around the time the PACS-DICO issue was heating up in Italy. It contains 18 speeches, homilies and messages that Benedict XVI has devoted to issues regarding the family.

If the diocese of Rome can afford it, it should strike a deal with OR to purchase these booklets in bulk and give it away along with the Ruini-Antonelli letter on that house-to-house campaign.

****************************************************************
And if only for the cover, here's the Italian edition of a French biography on the Pope,
which Paparatzifan discovered on a visit to her local Catholic bookshop this weekend.



Benedetto XVI: L'ultimo papa europeo
by Bernard Lacomte
Edizioni San Paolo
Cinisello Balsamo 2007, 1 ed.
128+8 pp, Photos in color and B/W
ISBN 978-88-215-5890-0
Euro 13,00


A translation of the blurb:
Some expected a Latin American to be elected Pope, or even an African, and instead here we have a German Pope, born in 1927 in the Catholic heartland of Europe, Bavaria. A man, like his Polish predecessor, who has gone through Nazism, the war, the Shoah, communism. A European militant who has been calling on all to fight for truth, in the name of love.

He is probably "the last European Pope." This is a book that is illuminating for the general public.

Bernard Lecomte is a prestigious journalist who writes for La Croix (French Catholic newspaper) and L'Express (weekly newsmagazine), and is the editor-in-chief of Figaro magazine. He wrote a 2004 biography of John Paul II.

****************************************************************

And this is an item that I had been meaning to pass along,
from Beatrice's website, and as worthy as the story is,
you will see from the image why I didn't exactly rush
to share it.


The Latin inscription means, "Keep spiritual unity for that good which is peace."

I swear I thought it was a medal intended for Putin from looking at the image alone!

It's the medallion that the Academy of Political and Moral Sciences of the Institut de France presented to the Pope when a delegation came to see him last March 10. I posted a translation of his address to them at the time in HOMILIES, MESSAGES, DISCOURSES.

The speech of the Academy's permanent secretary in presenting the medallion is worth translating - it's on the site of the Academy (the Vatican unfortunately hardly ever publishes the addresses made to the Pope at any occasion) - and when I do translate it, I will post it with the Pope's reply on March 10.

Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger was voted in by the Academy in 1992 as an associate member (only French citizens are full members) to fill the chair left vacant by Russian physicist-activist Andrei Sakharov who had died.

[Modificato da TERESA BENEDETTA 20/03/2007 4.35]

@Andrea M.@
00Monday, March 19, 2007 9:17 AM
Benedict stamps

I am trying to check if this is the first stamp they have issued on the Pope - Or did they issue one for his Bavarian visit...



Teresa,

to my knowledge there was not a stamp for the Bavarian visit. There were stamps for WYD. Generally speaking, stamps of living persons or persons of public life are very rarely done in Germany. So one could consider this as an exception.

There was one recently for the 100th birthday of the late cardinal Joseph Höffner, former Archbishop of Cologne and close friend of the present pope.


THE BOOK

The reson for saying only Benedict XVI in the title may be owed to the fact that it is only published in 2007.

In Germany at least, books by the Holy Father which were published when he was still cardinal Ratzinger came out in a new edition mentioning both names after his election to the See of Peter.

[Modificato da @Andrea M.@ 19/03/2007 9.35]



==============================================================
Thanks for the clarification about the stamps. I did check online, and the stamp issued for WYD was about WYD not the Pope.

As for the book attributIon, I don't think the publication date is the question here. It is that the Pope himself specified when the news first came out about the book last year that it was going to be attributed to Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI for the reason mentioned, and that in fact, the Preface which was released at the time (part of it, anyway) is signed Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI. - TERESA

[Modificato da TERESA BENEDETTA 19/03/2007 11.13]

TERESA BENEDETTA
00Tuesday, March 20, 2007 1:52 AM
COLOGNE'S HOMAGE TO 'ITS' RATZINGER
Avvenire has this story today from Cologne.



Cardinal Meisner:
He wanted to leave the Vatican
when he turned 75 but
Wojtyla told him he needed him

By Luigi Geninazzi

The black-and-white photo is a bit grainy but it highlighjts the shining eyes of a five-year-old boy on his first day at school: he looks serious, almost contrite, with his knapsack on his shoulder and a white ribbon around his collar.

It is one of the many hitherto unpublished photographs of Joseph Ratzinger that can be admired at the Maternushaus, the red brick building a few steps away from the imposing Gothic cathedral of Cologne.

Here, an exhibit called "The Pope from Germany" opened yesterday to celebrate the Pope who turns 80 on April 16.


A child viewing part of the Cologne exhibit (Reuters photos).


It is the first reconstruction of the human and intellectual development of the Geman pope through videos, films and audio tapes with explanatory caption panels. It is his biography but also an illustration of his theological thought.

But the visitor's curiosity will surely be drawn first to the archive photos and original documents on display.

A real gem, for instance, is a letter from the young Prof. Ratzinger to Cardinal Joseph Frings of Cologne, who was a member of the preparatory commission for Vatican-II.

It is dated September 14,1962, just a few weeks before the opening of that great event that would mean a historic turn for the Church. Ratzinger at the time was a lecturer in dogmatic theology at the University of Bonn, and Frings chose him to be his theology expert at the Council.

So, when Ratzinger received the Schemata (preparatory Council documents), he wasted no time and wrote his mentor a letter that is neatly written, almost with schoolboy precision, but with explosive contents. For instance, "I have taken the liberty to make some suggestions for improvement..."

We already find here, in kernel, the intellectual power and expository clarity of a man who was destined to become first the faithful guardian of Catholic orthodoxy and now, the greatest theologian Pope in modern times.

But why an exhibit on Joseph Ratzinger in Cologne rather than, say, Regensburg or Munich in his native Bavaria?

Peter Scharr, the curator who is very proud of this effort, says, "There are three reasons. It was in Bonn, which is part of the Archdioocese of Cologne, that the young Ratzinger had his first university professor's chair. Then, he hit it off right away with Cardinal Frings, which led to a calm but fruitful relationship. Finally, we cannot forget, that Benedict came to this city on the Rhine in August 2005 for World Youth Day, in his first trip abroad as Pope."

Then he adds, "Actually, there's another very good reason, pehaps the most decisive one. It's the extraordinary friendship between the Pope and Cardinal Joachim Meisner, the present Archbishop of Cologne."

"Well, everyone knows it," Meisner tells me as he accompanies me through the exhibit. "I have always been deeply and sincerely in agreement with him, even when many were criticizing him. We think the same way.

"When I started to study theology, it was his book, Introduction to Christianity, that formed me, in a convincing and substantial way. God has given us a great Pope who knows how to propose the truths of our faith clearly and simply. At the Conclave, we did not choose him because he is German. We chose him because he was the best."

Meisner is a river in full spate when he gets started about Benedict XVI. At the opening of the exhibit, he delighted the audience with rare anecdotes and sharp observations.

That opening did not lack music by Mozart, a quartet for flute and violins. About Ratzinger's love of Mozart, Meisner says, "Maybe because his theological thinking unfolds like Mozart's music - clear, tender and enchanting." [ Meisner once called Ratzinger 'the Mozart of theology.']

The archbishop recalls the time when Ratzinger was nearing his 75th birthday and the Prefect of the CDF told him he wished to leave the Vatican to devote himself to his studies. "I've already beaten all previous records for length of time in this post," Ratzinger told him. "It's time for me to go."

John Paul II, says Meisner, was appalled, and entrusted him with the assignment to talk his friend out of it. "Tell him that without him, I cannot do what I need to do, that Wojtyla's pontificate needs the theological support of Joseph Ratzinger."

So Meisner went to Ratzinger to carry out his mission. "You'll have all the time to study when you finally retire. But for now, give it a few more years at the Vatican." Obviously, he succeeded in his assignment.

But retirement? Look where RAtzinger is now.

"You were a terrible prophet," the new Pope jestingly chided Meisner the day after the Conclave.

For now, if Germans want to know more about their Pope, they may come to Cologne to see this exhibit, which is unique in all the world.

[Modificato da TERESA BENEDETTA 27/03/2007 0.17]

loriRMFC
00Tuesday, March 20, 2007 2:36 AM
What a great story Teresa! Very cool to hear about this exhibit and the photos and documents they have. Hehe at Papa to Cardinal Meisner, "You were a terrible prophet." I wonder how long this exhibit will be open for...and I have a feeling some people from our forum will go to it.[SM=g27828]
TERESA BENEDETTA
00Tuesday, March 20, 2007 4:32 AM
I certainly hope we will be able to find some of the material online soon from the Cologne exhibit. It would be so great if one of the Forum Benaddicts went down to it. PAGING SIMONE!!!! I know she lives not too far from Cologne. She can drive down on a weekend and get pictures!

================================================================

And before St. Joseph's Day is over here in New York, let me post a translation of a beautiful story from Gianluca Barile of PETRUS:

Angelo and his special wishes
for the Pope on his name day

By Gianluca Barile


Angelo was a good man, he was 54, with a wonderful wife, three children, a granddaughter, and great admiration for Benedict XVI.

But since Thursday, Angelo is no longer with us. Finally released from suffering, he now looks down at us from heaven. He had been fighting an incurable sickness since last spring, with faith and exemplary dignity.

The last time I went to visit him, he was still lucid, although he was nailed to his bed by pain as Jesus was on the Cross. I spoke to him like a son would, I tried to rally him, recalling all those anecdotes that linked him to my father, who died in his arms in 1996.

"Next Monday is the feast of St. Joseph, Papa's (my dad's) feast day," I said at one point. And he answered, "It's also the Pope's name day."

How much that remark struck me! Angelo knew he was close to death, yet he didn't forget about the Pope.

So I told him, "When you're a little better, I will take you to the Pope's general audience - you know, after the catechesis, he always greets the sick and the handicapped."

He looked at me with tears in his eyes, and something like a flash of hope. "Oh, gladly, gladly!" he said, " but if that won't be possible, then just give him my best wishes and congratulations."

And so now, Holiness, on this your feast day, I send you not only the best wishes of PETRUS and its readers, but especially the message to you from Angelo who is no longer with us, from a man who faced death with full confidence in the Resurrection, a true Catholic, apostolic Roman who offered you his love, loyalty and obedience up to the last breath.

A few days before that last meeting, I had brought him one of the 'official' rosaries from the Vatican. We spoke of the Pope, and he said, "Ratzinger is the right Pope for our times."

One of his relatives commented, "Well, Benedict may even be 'bravo', but I preferred John Paul II." And I recall Angelo's reply, almost vexed: "But what are you saying? One loves the Pope whatever his name is. I love Ratzinger the same way I loved John XXIII when I was a boy!"

Indeed, Angelo loved the Pope as a child would love his father. And therefore, once again, best wishes, Holiness, not only for your name day, but because for people like me, like Angelo, like our readers who think of you with affection, you are not only Papa, our Pope, but also Papa, our father.

[Modificato da TERESA BENEDETTA 20/03/2007 4.38]

TERESA BENEDETTA
00Tuesday, March 20, 2007 5:15 AM
PORTRAIT OF BENEDICT
ZENIT carried this intriguingly brief item today:

LONDON, MARCH 19, 2007 (Zenit.org).- The British artist Michael Noakes was commissioned for the first formal portrait of Benedict XVI.

According to the London-based Times, Noakes saw the Pope as a slightly shy man and tried to portray that.

"He also smiles a great deal," the artist said, "but it's an oil painting and is going to be around as part of the records for a long time. So I made him look cheerful, with a degree of gravitas and a bit of a twinkle."

The portrait, which measures 48.5 by 32 inches (124 by 82 centimeters) unframed, will be shown to the Holy Father at the end of April.

It will eventually hang in the Vatican.


So of course, I went online to try and see if I could get more information. And here's the original story:

P.S. 3/26/07 I must apologize - Benefan had actually posted the ff story on this thread two pages back, and I never saw it until tonight when I went back to check when I had posted a story about Hans Kueng in Canada...



Twinkle to the portrait
of a cheerful, shy pontiff

By Dalya Alberge
March 19, 2007


MICHAEL Noakes must be the only man on earth who can suggest to God's emissary how he should stand and how high he should raise his hand in blessing.

The British artist found himself at the Vatican earlier this year doing just that as he got the Pope to stand still for him in his private quarters.

"Please raise your hand, Holy Father, nearer your head," he heard himself saying. "Would you, Holy Father, move your right foot forward?"

Surrounded by leather-bound antiquarian books and a couple of paintings of saints, he was painting the Pope's first formal portrait. For Noakes, it was the ultimate blessing as an artist and as a Catholic.

Although he is no stranger to painting famous people - previous sitters have included the Queen, Margaret Thatcher and Bill Clinton - he was taken aback by this commission, partly because it had been so unexpected.

Noakes recalls how he visited Rome last year to unveil a portrait of the Archbishop of Westminster, Cardinal Cormac Murphy O'Connor. "At the end of the unveiling, a young Maltese monsignor stationed in the Vatican came over and said simply, 'Will you paint the Pope for us?"' The invitation was all the more surprising because the previous pope, John Paul II, had steadfastly refused to pose for portraits.

A year after the initial invitation, Noakes was contacted again by the Vatican and a date was set.

His informal brief was to portray Pope Benedict with his hand raised in blessing or greeting, and wearing his crimson cape with fur trim and heavily embroidered stole.

The artist turned up with his pencils, his drawing book, his paints and his brushes - his gear, as he refers to the tools of his trade - and was shown into the library. Getting himself prepared mentally, he sharpened his pencils, but within minutes the Pope was standing before him and Noakes was kissing his ring.

Noakes, who trained at the Royal Academy Schools in Britain, is represented in public collections including the National Portrait Gallery and the British Museum in London, as well as the Royal Collection.

While the Queen gave him unprecedented access - allowing him to shadow her and record her daily working life in detail for a year - Pope Benedict did not grant him that luxury. When Archbishop William Levada, the Pope's head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, asked him how long he would need, Noakes replied: "Four, five or six sittings of 2 1/2 hours". But that wasn't possible.

"I'm a professional and I make do with what I'm given, although that's bound to affect what I can do. I dearly wanted more time," Noakes says.

The artist sketched feverishly, trying out different poses and expressions to take back to his studio. He could barely relax enough to make conversation and the Pope, who had no difficulty in standing still, did not ask him any questions about himself or comment on anything other than the portrait. The Pope's only suggestion was that the picture ought to show him with his mouth closed.

For Noakes, he came over as a slightly shy man: "I wanted to imply that. He also smiles a great deal, but it's an oil painting and is going to be around as part of the records for a long time. So I made him look cheerful, with a degree of gravitas and a bit of a twinkle."

The portrait, which measures 124cm by 82cm unframed, will be shown to the Pope at the end of April.

It was dispatched to Rome last week and will hang in the Vatican, in the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith's room. In London, Noakes will display a related oil study for the portrait in an exhibition by the Royal Society of Portrait Painters.

===============================================================

And just to set my mind at rest that this was not going to be like, you know, a Francis Bacon type portrait,
I went to Noakes's site, and am reassured that he is indeed a traditional portrait painter. Below, his portraits
of Cardinal Basil Hume and the Queen Mother.



I don't think we will get to see a picture of the Pope's portrait before he himself sees it first.

3/26/07 P.S. On the contrary, MaryJos has since informed us that a photo of teh the portrait has been published in Brtiain's Catholic newspapers, and Mary posted one with teh artist beside it.

[Modificato da TERESA BENEDETTA 27/03/2007 6.38]

Simone55
00Tuesday, March 20, 2007 3:38 PM
The exhibition in Cologne
Hi, girls,

here is the link http://www.papstausstellung.de/
I am sorry, the website is in german.
On the right you will find the photos of the opening and from the exhibition.
I really would like to visit the exhibition. Let's see.


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