27 October 2010


In January, I posted the following, after the Superior of the SSPX had spoken, in my view most disrespectfully, about the present pope's intention to have a new 'Assisi Event' for peace:

I'm not sure that I agree - despite having some sympathy with him - with Bishop Fellay's views on the New Assisi which is planned.
Considering Papa Ratzinger's subtlety and his views on the necessarily coherent, non-self-contradictory, nature of the Tradition and of the Magisterium, I can't help feeling that his intention to have the meeting in that particular place may have, as one its purposes, a resolution of the worrying ambiguities in the original event.
Can't we wait and see what actually happens? If all is done with propriety, then presumably the Holy Father is saying 'This is what the true contextualised meaning of these occasions is; so let nobody in the future claim that the rough edges in the original format afford precedents for syncretism.'
It may be that Bishop Fellay has to keep his own constituency on board. I would respect that. But ...

In April I reposted the piece, with the following addition:

Having looked at the latest VIS communique, I see references only to addresses and to 'silent prayer'. I feel strongly inclined, as I did in January, to trust the Holy Father's disposition of this event. I suspect that he may intend to bring 'Assisi' under the umbrella of the Hermeneutic of Continuity.

Early in September, I again posted the same piece. I now give it a fourth airing, without feeling any need to comment!


Trisagion said...

'a resolution of the worrying ambiguities in the original event'

Beautifully put.

GOR said...

Re the Holy Father's intentions regarding Assisi, my thoughts exactly, Father!

Naysayers to the contrary, I believe Pope Benedict knows exactly what he is doing and the rumors of another Papal 'catastrophe' are premature - just like the previous ones...

People like to say that he is naive, but if he is I would say it is a disarming naivety. There's more to him than meets the eye!

Heidi said...
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Heidi said...

Father, I think this is spot on, and am a bit surprised that so few commentators seem to suggest it (sorry about the typos in my original comment).

Peregrinus said...

I should think that Orthodox Jews of a certain disposition might well feel free to participate with the righteous Gentiles gathered, one being the successor of a notable Jew, one Simon.

Once again, well put Father.

Священник села said...

(For your interest, dear Father)

Holy Father speaks at the Seminary Hörsaal, Freiburg

.... I offer a particular word of thanks to you, dear Metropolitan Augoustinos for your profound words. I was especially moved by what you said about the Mother of God and about the saints who encompass and unite all the centuries. And I willingly repeat in this setting what I have said elsewhere: among Christian Churches and communities, it is undoubtedly the Orthodox who are theologically closest to us; Catholics and Orthodox have maintained the same basic structure inherited from the ancient Church; in this sense we are all the early Church that is still present and new. And so we dare to hope, even if humanly speaking constantly new difficulties arise, that the day may still be not too far away when we may once again celebrate the Eucharist together...

Since the time when I was a professor in Bonn and especially while I was Archbishop of Munich and Freising, I have come to know and love Orthodoxy more and more through my personal friendships with representatives of the Orthodox Churches. At that time the Joint Commission of the German Bishops’ Conference and the Orthodox Church also began its work. Since then, through its texts on pastoral and practical questions, it has furthered mutual understanding and contributed to the consolidation and further development of Catholic-Orthodox relations in Germany.

Equally important is the ongoing work to clarify theological differences, because the resolution of these questions is indispensable for restoration of the full unity that we hope and pray for. We know that above all it is the question of primacy that we must continue patiently and humbly struggling to understand aright. In this regard, I think that the ideas put forward by Pope John Paul II in the Encyclical Ut Unum Sint (no. 95) on the distinction between the nature and form of the exercise of primacy can yield further fruitful discussion points.

In the present climate, in which many would like, as it were, to “liberate” public life from God, the Christian Churches in Germany – including Orthodox and Oriental Orthodox Christians – are walking side by side along the path of peaceful witness for understanding and solidarity among peoples, on the basis of their faith in the one God and Father of all. At the same time they continue to place the miracle of God’s incarnation at the centre of their proclamation. Realizing that on this mystery all human dignity depends, they speak up jointly for the protection of human life from conception to natural death. Faith in God, the Creator of life, and unconditional adherence to the dignity of every human being strengthen faithful Christians to oppose vigorously every manipulative and selective intervention in the area of human life. Knowing too the value of marriage and the family, we as Christians attach great importance to defending the integrity and the uniqueness of marriage between one man and one woman from any kind of misinterpretation.... the common engagement of Christians, including Orthodox and Oriental Orthodox Christians, makes a valuable contribution to building up a society equipped for the future, in which the human person is given the respect which is his due.

Finally, I would like to direct our gaze towards Mary – you presented her to us as the Panagia – and she is also the Hodegetria, the “Guide along the Way”, who is also venerated in the West under the title “Our Lady of the Way”. The Most Holy Trinity has given the Virgin Mother Mary to mankind, that she might guide us through history with her intercession and point out to us the way towards fulfilment. To her we entrust ourselves and our prayer that we may become a community ever more intimately united in Christ, to the praise and glory of his name.

Anonymous said...

any "event for peace" & "finally, i would like to direct our gaze towards Mary-"

thank you

Poppy Tupper said...
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Fireball said...

You know, a lot of people used to think Ronald Reagan was a bit dotty too. Turned out he was the smartest leader in generations.

We used to say: "Let Reagan be Reagan!"

I think we can safely trust to say:

"Let Benedict be Benedict! All Will Be Well".