The Quest Continues to Understand Pope Benedict:: Better Be Quick. He'll Be Here In A Week!!

Pope Benedict XVIImage via Wikipedia
Catholic journalist Mark Dowd has certainly been prominent in the news this week and previous posts have highlighted his excellent Radio programme, the Pope's British Divisions.
Next week Dowd fronts a BBC TV film programme, Benedict: Trials of a Pope, which will be broadcast on BBC Two on Wednesday September 15 at 7pm.
In today's Catholic Herald,  Dowd continues his "personal quest" to understand Pope Benedict XVI in this article entitled How I Changed My Mind About The Pope. 
Thanks to Tina Beattie at  Marginal Musings we can read an erudite review by Rupert Shotte of Tracey Rowlands new book on Benedict. 

Click on the link here for the full article that "offers excellent insights as to how we can understand more about this enigmatic churchman as we await his arrival in Britain."

Meanwhile I ponder on this list of people investigated or silenced by Ratzinger , (many of whom were just "thinking" which is after all the job of a theologian.).

These were investigated by Ratzinger when he held the post of Prefect of the Doctrine of the Congregation of the Faith. (aka Grand Inquisitor). One source states there were 104 people silenced in total. 

However, on a day where the gospel asks me to think about splinters in my brother's eye and planks in my own I better be careful not to get carried away in my judgements and try to avoid bias.

 I do want to hope that the visit of the Pope to the UK brings  renewal  and not just for Catholics but to everyone. I just can't help feeling uneasy about this Pope.

Some of these I know about and admire like Oscar Romero, Bishop Helder Camara and Anthony de Mello ; many of these were influential in forming my faith in my young adult years . I know that others were Marxists but there are some  I will need to look up to find out more about. 

FR. BERNARD HAERING, the late and esteemed German Redemptorist priest  and moral theologian who was 78 when Ratzinger investigated him.
 Haring had been tortured by the Nazis in the second world war and he emerged from Ratzinger’s offices saying that the experience with Ratzinger was “more scary” than his experience with the Nazis.
OSCAR ROMERO of El Salvador, called in three times to the Vatican to explain his stand against the military. The Vatican sent three visitors to coerce him to be silent.
JACQUES POHIER, French Dominican
SISTER AGNES MARY MANSOUR of the Sisters of Mercy in Michigan
GUSTAVO GUTIERREZ, Peruvian liberation theologian
LEONARDO BOFF, Brazilian liberation theologian
ALL THE BISHOPS OF PERU summoned to Rome to repudiate liberation theology
FR. GYORGY BULANYI, a Hungarian priest
FR. CHARLES CURRAN of Catholic University of America
BISHOP MATHEW CLARK of Rochester, New York
FR. ALEX ZANOTELLI of Columbia who published an article demonstrating the relationship between arms sales and Italian relief agencies

BISHOP PEDRO CASALDALIGA, defender of the Indians and the rainforest in Brazil
BISHOP HELDER CAMARA'S Institute in Recife, Brazil, which was shut down
FR. EUGEN DREWERMANN of Germany, a psychoanalyst and author
FR. PHILIPPE DENIS, Dominican of France, for criticizing the Opus Dei
IVONE GEBARA, Brazilian sister
FR. PAUL COLLINS of Australia
ANTHONY DE MELLO, Indian Jesuit (who had already been dead eleven years when his work was condemned)
SISTER JEANNINE GRAMICK AND FR. ROBERT NUGENT of the United States for ministering to gay and lesbian Catholics because they had not "condemned the intrinsic evil of homosexual acts"

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Anonymous said...

I don't understand why Ratzinger is such a villain for his work with the CDF. The process is much like peer review of any scientific or academic work. His staff first makes a determination and then it is brought to the consultors of the CDF - a board of many -Cardinals and theologians. Ratzinger in Salt of the Earth says that they didn't act unless there was a consensus that something was against the faith. I doubt also that people were afraid of him. Boff for example was one of Ratzinger's students of whom it is said Ratzinger often paid his bills because he was so poor. No, they weren't afraid of him as much as the import of their situation with the Church - not with the rest of the World. One could hardly say Kung was silenced - he's the loudest mouth on an active stage. Many of these people's careers were actually enhanced by actions taken in regards to what they said - not to whom they were. As stated, I guess I just don't understand why Ratzinger is always the one indicted as the evil monster silencing people. Someone has to make sure that what people is teaching is right and every profession has their gatekeepers.

Philomena Ewing said...

Welcome and thank you for your comments. As a scientist I can understand the process of peer review but when it come to my faith , much of which is mystery I don't see how it can be compared. The people who are appointed in the curia are not voted in by consensus. I was quoting the actual people who were interviewed by Ratzinger when he was head of the CDF - so not my views. To say that an old man like Helder Camara who was in his late 70's was really bothered about his career when he was investigated is unlikely and it is clear he was harassed.Kung was removed from his teaching post and his autobiography is a graphic account of the machinations of power within the Curia. He also was deeply hurt by what happened and it is clear that he s a man of integrity. When much respected people like Fr. James Martin speak out on the repression and fear of speaking out in our church I do take notice. It's no good pretending everything is fine - we need to think about structures of clericalism and how this has impacted on the shocking abuse abuse within the church, the cultivation of in-crowd secrecy instead of transparency, abuse of authority by bishops, stonewalling of lay review boards, scapegoating of gay priests and theologians, continued refusal to allow laity a voice in selecting leaders.While we’re at it, let’s ignore the dearth of clergy which threatens our sacramental life, the vocation-drain of people called to priesthood but not to celibacy, and of women called to priesthood, the fact that many increasingly find the Church irrelevant to their lives and unhelpful with their concerns, and the increasing division of the Church into factions of the left and the right hurling epithets at each other. Just pray and it’ll all go away ?