“The Ratzinger Report” Returns to Brazilian Bookstores

This work is indispensable for theologians, philosophers, historians, sociologists and for all who wish to better understand the dramas and challenges that the Catholic Church has been going through in the last decades.

Newsdesk (28/11/2021 2:00 PM, Gaudium Press) One of the main interview books with (then) German Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, later Pope Benedict XVI, has just returned to Brazilian bookstores 37 years after its release. Published by the Ratzinger Foundation “Report on the Faith. Vittorio Messori Conversation with Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger“, is also known by its original title: “Rapporto sulla fede“. In English, the book is known as “The Ratzinger Report: An Exclusive interview on the State of the Church”

The book deals with the great themes of our Faith

Divided into thirteen chapters, of which one is more personal and the other twelve are properly critical-analytical, the book deals with the great themes of our Faith: the interpretation of Vatican II within the ecclesial tradition, ecclesiology, bishops and bishops’ conferences, catechesis, morality, the role of women, spirituality, liturgy, the devil and eschatology, ecumenism, liberation theology and evangelization.

At the time he agreed to be interviewed, Ratzinger was 58 years old and Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. According to Italian journalist Vittorio Messori, his project was about “the breaking of the secular silence of the head of the institution that, until after the Second Vatican Council, had taken the name of ‘Holy Office’. A historical novelty — a series of interviews with a reporter — which were to form a book, presenting an assessment of the situation of the Church twenty years after the Council.

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Ratzinger’s intuitions and criticisms have not lost their force

The book was published in 1984, at the peak of the debate on Liberation Theology, and in the eve of the Extraordinary Synod commemorating the twentieth anniversary of the conclusion of Vatican II. However, reading the work again, one can see that Ratzinger’s intuitions and criticisms have not lost their focus. Much of what he was drawing at the time is still among us. For some analysts consider, this book ended the “wild post-Council”; for others, it represented a new phase of reception of the conciliar heritage.

The translation of the Italian original by Bishop Fernando José Guimarães, a Redemptorist priest and now Military Archbishop of Brazil, was revised by the translator himself and by the editor, Professor Rudy Albino de Assunção. This work is indispensable for theologians, philosophers, historians, sociologists and for all who wish to better understand the dramas and challenges that the Catholic Church has been going through in the last decades and reflect on its future. (EPC)

Compiled by Roberta MacEwan

 

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