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HUMANITAS Christian Anthropological and Cultural Review HUMANITAS review came into being to provide the University with a source of reflection and study at the service of the academic community and the wider public in general. Its objective is to reflect the concerns and teachings of the Papal Magisterium (Decree of the Rector from the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile 147/95, par. 2) EDITOR Jaime Antúnez Aldunate EDITORIAL COMMITTEE Hernán Corral Talciani Samuel Fernández Eyzaguirre Gabriel Guarda O.S.B. René Millar Carvacho Pedro Morandé Court Ricardo Riesco Jaramillo Francisco Rosende Ramírez Juan de Dios Vial Correa Juan de Dios Vial Larraín Arturo Yrarrázaval Covarrubias ASSISTANT EDITOR Bernardita M. Cubillos WEB CONTENT MANAGER Francisco Javier Tagle Montt COUNCIL OF CONSULTANTS AND COLLABORATORS Honorary President: H.E. Cardinal Francisco Javier Errázuriz Ossa, Archbishop Emeritus of Santiago de Chile. Héctor Aguer, Anselmo Álvarez O.S.B., Carl Anderson, Andrés Arteaga, Francisca Alessandri, Antonio Amado, Felipe Bacarreza, Remi Brague, Jean-Louis Bruguès O.P., Rocco Buttiglione, Massimo Borghesi, Carlos Francisco Cáceres, Cardinal Carlo Caffarra, Stratford Caldecott, Cardinal Antonio Cañizares, Jorge Cauas Lama, Guzmán Carriquiry, William E. Carroll, Alberto Caturelli, Cesare Cavalleri, Fernando Chomalí, Francisco Claro, Ricardo Couyoumdjian, Mario Correa Bascuñán, Francesco D’Agostino, Adriano Dell’Asta, Vittorio di Girolamo, Carmen Domínguez, Carlos José Errázuriz, Jesús Colina, Luis Fernando Figari, Alfredo García Quesada, Juan Ignacio González, Stanislaw Grygiel, Gonzalo Ibáñez Santa-María, Raúl Hasbun, Henri Hude, José Miguel Ibáñez, Raúl Irarrázabal, Lydia Jiménez, Paul Johnson, Jean Laffitte, Nikolaus Lobkowicz, Alfonso López Quintás, Alejandro Llano, Raúl Madrid, Javier Martínez Fernández, Patricia Matte Larraín, Carlos Ignacio Massini Correas, Mauro Matthei O.S.B., Cardinal Jorge Medina, Livio Melina, Augusto Merino, Dominic Milroy O.S.B., Antonio Moreno Casamitjana, Fernando Moreno Valencia, Rodrigo Moreno Jeria, José Miguel Oriol, Máximo Pacheco Gómez, Mario Paredes, Francisco Petrillo O.M.D., Bernardino Piñera, Aquilino Polaino-Lorente, Cardinal Paul Poupard, Javier Prades, Dominique Rey, Héctor Riesle, Florián Rodero L.C., Alejandro San Francisco, Romano Scalfi, Cardinal Angelo Scola, David L. Schindler, Josef Seifert, Gisela Silva Encina, Robert Spaemann, Paulina Taboada, William Thayer Arteaga, Olga Ulianova, Luis Vargas Saavedra, Miguel Ángel Velasco, Juan Velarde Fuertes, Aníbal Vial, Pilar Vigil, Richard Yeo O.S.B., Diego Yuuki S.J.

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Translation of the letter sent by Benedict XVI, Pope emeritus, on the occasion of the publication of the 4th edition of Humanitas review (and the 70th of the Spanish Edition) containing an homage to his eight years of papacy.

Benedictus XVI Pope emeritus

Vatican City, 7.9.2013

Prof. Dr. Jaime Antúnez Aldunate Editor of Humanitas Review Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile Av. Libertador Bernardo O’Higgins 390 Centro de Extensión, 3er Piso

Santiago de CHILE

My dear and estimated professor! On this occasion, I would like to warmly thank you for your letter on the day of Corpus Christi and especially for the attached copy of “Humanitas” containing such favorable appreciation of my papacy. You have followed my thought and my work throughout these 25 years, thus making it possible for my voice to be heard in Chile. So was a connection established between us; which has once again been strengthened by your most recent contribution. I shall take this legacy with me into this time of silence in which I have retired, and will remain inwardly close to your work and that of the Catholic University at Santiago de Chile. With my cordial thanks for everything, may you receive my apostolic blessing.

In the Lord

Benedict XVI

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Humanitas Nº 5 2013- Year III

Bia nnual English Digital Edition





Year of Faith 2012-2013 THE LIGHT OF FAITH Juan de Dios Vial Larraín







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Psychology with Soul DESIRE, THE ENGINE OF LIFE Giovanni Cucci S.J.






Front cover:

Detail of the fresco «The Transfiguration», by Fra Angelico. St. Marcus Convent, Florence.

Summary Editorial Notes The Pope in his own words The Church and the world Books About the authors

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See the Digital Version of English and Spanish edition on our page www.humanitas.cl


Serving the encounter of faith and culture

HUMANITAS (ISSN 07172168) publishes articles by its regular, national and foreign collaborators as well as authors whose subject matter is in harmony with the goals of HUMANITAS. The total or partial reproduction of articles published by HUMANITAS requires authorization, with the exception of commentary or quotes. Design and Production: Ximena Ulibarri, Diseño Corporativo UC Letters: HUMANITAS / Centro de Extensión de la Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile / Av. Libertador Bernardo O’Higgins 390, 3rd floor / Santiago / Chile Tel: (56 - 2) 354 65 19 - Fax: (56 – 2) 354 37 55 – email: humanitas@uc.cl

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Summary n° 5 (Second Semester 2013) Biannual English Digital Edition

THE EDICT OF MILAN: INITIUM LIBERTATIS, by Angelo Cardinal Scola. The Edict of Milan of the year 313 has an epochal meaning because it marks the Initium Libertatis of modern man, asserted the illustrious exponent of Roman Law, Gabrio Lombardi. This suggests that the measures signed by the two Augusti—Constantine and Licinius—determined not only the progressive end of the persecutions against Christians, but also, and above all, the birth of religious freedom. With the Edict of Milan appear for the first time in history the two dimensions that today we call “religious freedom” and “the secular state,” decisive elements for the good organization of political society. If religious freedom does not turn into freedom placed on the top scale of fundamental rights, the entire structure falls. Religious freedom is today a much larger challenge: that of definition and practice at the local and universal level; of new anthropological, social, and cosmological foundations for civil societies in this third millennium. Humanitas 2013-2014, V, pp. 10 - 19 IBERO-AMERICA THOUGHT IN DEPTH, by Alver Metalli. The figure of Alberto Methol Ferré is analysed. An Uruguayan thinker who died in 2009, he developed a communion of ideas and a close relationship with the then Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio. Their closeness stems from a long while back. A Uruguayan friend states that both met “intellectually” during the 1970’s. While, face to face, they met for the first time in 1978 on the wave of the initiative they both intended to enact on the preparatory debate for the Third General Conference of the Latin American Episcopate that was to be held in Puebla, Mexico. They had in common the emphasis on the subject of popular religiosity, of the poor, of culture, of Latin American history, and they developed a comprehensive approach toward the national realities that, consequently, entered in conflict with the liberation theology subordinated to the Marxist hermeneutic. From these instances, the reciprocity of both continued with a great intellectual affinity that included the reality of the current Latin American man in the light of an ethic focused on the richness of relationship, as opposed to the loneliness and selfishness of the individual. Humanitas 2013, V, pp. 20 - 25 THE LIGHT OF FAITH, by Juan de Dios Vial Larraín. Lumen Fidei, Pope Francis’ encyclical, is not a shooting star, but the complete fulfillment, the final design, of a brilliant theological constellation covering the skies of our time. The work of John Paul II, Benedict XVI, and Francis, the last three Pontiffs of the Catholic Church, seen against a background where John XXIII and the Second Vatican Council can be discerned, till today.The center of this figure is Christ and his Grace, which comes to men through the so-called theological virtues –Faith, Hope, and Love– in man’s encounter with God. By means of these virtues the Word of God raises man’s spirit and heart. Humanitas 2013, V, pp. 26 - 33 NEWMAN: ON THE COUNCILS AND THEIR AFTERMATHS, by Ian Ker. Cardinal Newman anticipated himself in many respects to the Second Vatican Council, particularly in its ecclesiology. It is well known that he was a solitary pioneer of the laity, in the middle of the highly clerical church of the 19th Century, and his vision of the episcopate was also highly commented on. However, there are certain writings by Newman that have been comparatively ignored and that carefully express, in scriptural and patristic terms, the definition of the Council on what Newman would have called “the idea of the Church.” Herein we find the same idea that Newman discovered when he was still an Anglican from his readings of the Greek Fathers, who primarily saw the Church as the communion of those who had received the gift of the Holy Spirit in baptism. His definitions are in line with Lumen Gentium: “The Spirit dwells in the Church and in the hearts of the faithful as in a temple,” the members of the people of God that “are reborn… from the water and the Holy Spirit,” a “messianic people in which the

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Spirit lives as in a temple.” Newman would have easily predicted the consequences of not hearing these fundamental visions and exaggerating the meaning of the chapters on the Bishops and the laity: an excessive Gallican emphasis on the so called “collegiality,” an emphasis that ignores the fact that the Church is both Papal as well as Episcopal, and a worry for the laity that has adopted a laicism that frequently takes the place of the old clericalism. Humanitas 2013, V, pp. 34 - 49 50 YEARS AFTER THE ELECTION OF PAUL VI, by Henri de Lubac. On June 21, 1978, the great conciliar theologian, Jesuit priest, and later Cardinal of the Church, Henri de Lubac, wrote this article for L’Osservatore Romano to commemorate 15 years of the pontificate of Paul VI, who would die soon after. We reproduce this document on the 50th anniversary (June 21, 2013) of the election of Giovanni Battista Montini as the 262nd successor of Peter. Humanitas 2013, V, pp. 50 THE DRAMA OF EDUCATION IN THE COMMUNION OF THE FAMILY, by José Noriega. The meaning of life needs to correspond to the telos of life, or to its fulfillment. Nevertheless, one cannot understand this fullness outside of life, but is understood only within the experience of life itself and it is only revealed slowly, over time, thanks to the communion between family members. The family communion is therefore the place of the hermeneutic interpretation of meaning. It favors love, which comes to enrich our existence and which, through trust, stimulates the discovery of the excellence of behavior that renders life truly full. Education, therefore, means helping uncover the meaning of experience and molding it into desire. Humanitas 2013, V, pp. 54 - 71 INDIVIDUALISM, PERSONALISM, AND THE NEW EVANGELIZATION, by Antonio Suárez. The question “What is the truth?” has a better formulation in the question “Who is the truth?” that leads to the identification of the truth with a Person. With Jesus Christ, “The Truth in Person” bursts into history, and generates a Christian personalism based on this essential fact. Alien to this reality, modernity has rested on the foundations of “liberal individualism,” and has interpreted from its parameters the subjects of marriage, the family, and life. However, insofar as human rights have been used to justify possessive individualism, they have been dispossessed of their authentic meaning. This predominant ideology today is perhaps the main obstacle for the task of the New Evangelization. The insistence on the fact that the person of Christ is the truth may produce the liberation of culture from the subtle chains of hedonist and positivist individualism, to rescue Christian personalism and humanism. Humanitas 2013, V, pp. 72 - 83 CERVANTES AND THE QUESTION OF MODERN MAN, by José Granados. To make an analysis of modern times it may be of important assistance to appeal to Cervantes’ great novel , “Don Quixote de la Mancha.” In fact, revered as a classic, the work has inspired a history of culture stirring passion in the Romantics and motivating revolutionaries to search for freedom without limitations. The success of this literary piece throughout history may be explained by the contrast between the world of ideals, represented by the illustrious nobleman, and the horizon of worldly daily life embodied in his squire, Sancho Panza. While the former aspires to the greatness of a free spirit thrown into adventure, the latter is a testimony of the universe without mystery that exisits in the modern world, where the physical-mathematical laws intend to explain the totality of human existence, barring the way to the search for reason. Humanitas 2013, V, pp. 84 - 91 IS EVERY HUMAN BEING A PERSON?, by Robert Spaemann. Personhood is not the concept of a species, but rather the way by which individuals of the species “human” are. They are in such a way that each of those existents in that community of persons we call “humanity” holds a unique place, irreproducible and incapable of substitution. Only as holding such a place are they perceived as persons by someone who also occupies such a place. Whoever lays claim to this place asserts this claim as a born, not an elected, member of humanity. Personal rights are not granted or permitted, but rather they are claimed by everyone with equal right. Humanitas 2013, V, pp. 92 - 103

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UNIVERSITY, EDUCATION, AND THE UNITY OF KNOWLEDGE, by Reinhard Hütter. The third dimension of the university is the unifying dimension that offers an integrated and ordered view of the first two dimensions and hence enables coherence, order, and evaluation—and pedagogically, paideia. It is the dimension of “metascience,” of a unifying and integrating inquiry that transcends each particular science and the acquiriment of specific competencies. It is an inquiry that attends to the whole, to the order and coherence of all science, to its governing principles, and hence to the university as a self-conscious and coherent search for truth and wisdom, forming an ellipsis around two foci: the universe and the human being. The third dimension, the depth-dimension, offers internal coherence to a university education and realizes the university in a solid and proper sense. Whatever makes a university still a somewhat, even marginally, coherent reality is parasitical on this third, depth dimension. Inasmuch as the post-modern research university embraces “secular reason” as its dominant mode of self-understanding and contemplation, it closes itself off from this third dimension and restricts itself to the twodimensional plane of the production of knowledge. I would like to highlight two features of this third dimension by way of a philosophical observation and a theological reminder. Humanitas 2013, V, pp. 104 - 125 DESIRE, THE ENGINE OF LIFE, by Giovanni Cucci S.J. Desire occupies a major place in human life, at all levels. Its devaluation is the cause of the current situation, characterized by the nonsense and the difficulty of understanding significant and stable possibilities, particularly during youth. Here the characteristics of desire are analyzed, differentiating it from need. Subsequently some criteria are suggested to be able to recognize in it the fundamental truth. Far from being captive of uncontrolled materialism, the world of the desires leads essentially to the transcendental spiritual dimension, because it invites one to get out of oneself, develop a project and surrender to it, making what one wishes a reality because it is filled with meaning and vital direction. Humanitas 2013, V, pp. 126 - 137 NOTES SAINT JOHN’S BIBLE, HANDWRITTEN AND ILLUMINATED FOR TODAY’S MAN, by Verónica Griffin. In 1998, the Benedictine Abbey and Saint John’s University of Collegeville, Minnesota and the master English calligrapher, Donald Jackson, undertook the task of creating a hand-written and illuminated Bible. This was the first handwritten Bible made in a Benedictine monastery since the invention of the press. The purpose was to create a Bible that would illuminate faith in modern man. That would capture the beauty and dignity of the great medieval Bibles, but with eloquent images for today’s man along with contemporary Biblical texts. Fifteen years later the work was concluded. It is called the Saint John’s Bible. TO THE MEMORY OF JUANA ROSS DE EDWARDS, ON THE CENTENNIAL OF HER DEATH, by Gonzalo Duarte García de Cortázar. On July 25, 1913, Juana Ross de Edwards died. She was the spouse of Agustín Edwards Ossandón and a member of a renowned family whose roots are a fruit of, and a testimony to, Valparaíso’s English ascendance. Despite being well-off, she was not unaware of the needs and vices of the people of this city. Rather, she became a great benefactor to hospitals, homes, and asylums, dedicating her life to her neighbors, especially the poorest. Humanitas offers to the Anglophone public the homily delivered by the Bishop of Valparaíso on this anniversary, in which he presents a biographical sketch of this admirable person who unites and incarnates the richness of the English tradition with its legacy in Chile. Humanitas 2013, V, pp. 138 - 149 BOOKS “Gesù a Roma” by Juan María Laboa (Jaca Book); “El verdadero poder es el servicio” by Jorge Mario Bergoglio (Publicaciones Claretianas); “La parola di Dio quale bene giuridico ecclesiale” by Carlos José Errázuriz (Edizioni Santa Croce); “Dialogo sull’educazione con Papa Benedetto XVI” by Donato Petti (Libreria Editrice Vaticana); “Hasard ou plan de Dieu? La Création et l’Évolution vues à la lumière de la Foi et de la Raison” by Christoph Schönborn (Les Editions du Cerf); “Il futuro e la speranza. Vita e magistero del Cardinale Angelo Scola” by Andrea Tornielli (Piemmi Incontri); “El Papa y el Filósofo” by Alberto Methol Ferré and Alver Metalli (Editorial Biblos); “In difesa di Pio XII. Le ragioni della storia” by Giovanni Maria Vian (Marsilio Editori); “Chers Djihadistes” by Philippe Muray (Fayard - Mille Et Une Nuits); “La canción de dom Mauro” by Jacinto Peraire Ferrer (Biblioteca de Autores Cristianos); “Un vescovo contro Hitler” by Stefania Falasca (San Paolo). Humanitas 2013, V, pp. 222 - 237

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B enedict XVI


“H umanitas ”


n its 18 years of existence, “Humanitas” has received many words of recognition and encouragement, whose great significance lies not only in what was said but also in who said them. Its pages have also been filled with contributions of the highest importance, among which those written by authors who would later become successors to Peter deserve a special mention. This has been the case with Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio, currently Pope Francis (cfr. Humanitas 70, April 2013), and before that, with Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, later Pope Benedict XVI (cfr. Humanitas—special issue, May 2005). None of those words, however, can be compared, in their importance and significance for this journal, with the ones written by the Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, in a letter dated last July 9 and reproduced at the beginning of this issue. In itself, this letter constitutes, to be sure, the highest and most honourable recognition ever made to this task of the enculturation of the Gospel, of a mainly editorial nature—created and developed within the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile—, that is “Humanitas.” We humbly and from the depths of our hearts thank the Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI. There is still more to these lines, however. In fact, Benedict XVI speaks of a bond created by the accompaniment of his work, intellectual and magisterial, which has already lasted for 25 years, that is, longer than the existence of “Humanitas.” As we have many times put in writing (cfr. Humanitas 63, July 2012, editorial page), the people from different nations and continents that form the body of contributors to “Humanitas” knew each other before this journal took its first steps. This communio is organically related to the echo of John Paul II’s proclamation “Do not fear!”and in its path nothing was as important as Joseph Ratzinger’s continual and luminous teaching. The origin and development of “Humanitas” is thus truthfully and unequivocally expressed. Moreover, to know—through the words written by the Pope Emeritus, Benedict, by his own hand—that he now takes this legacy with him in the time of silence to which he retired, blessing and intimately remaining close to our work, points to what is essentially to be expected from “Humanitas” in the future.

Juan de Dios Vial Correa

Former President Pontifical Catholic University of Chile

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Jaime Antúnez Aldunate Director HUMANITAS

50th edition of Humanitas (in Spanish).

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The Edict of Milan: Initium Libertatis


Masterful speech given by the Archbishop of Milan for the feast of St. Ambrose that explains the commemoration of this historic event of religious liberty that happened 1700 years ago in the Ambrosian Diocese.

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HUMANITAS Nยบ 71 pp. 560 - 559


he Edict of Milan of 313 has an epochal significance because it marks the initium libertatis for modern man.”1 This statement by a celebrated specialist in Roman Law, the late lamented Gabrio Lombardi, goes to show how its provisions, signed by the two Augusti—Constantine and Licinius—marked not only the gradual end of Christian persecutions but, above all, was the birth certificate of religious freedom. In a certain sense, we can trace as far back as the Edict of Milan the very first emergence in history of the two phenomena that today we call “religious freedom” and “the secular state.” These are two crucial elements for the good organization of political society. An interesting confirmation of this may be found in two significant teachings of St. Ambrose. On the one hand the archbishop never hesitated to call on Christians to be loyal to civil authority, while An interesting confirmation at the same time he taught that civil authority must guaran- of this may be found in tee freedom to citizens on the personal and social level. In two significant teachings this way there developed a recognition of the boundaries of of St. Ambrose. On the the public weal, whose security citizens and authority alike one hand the archbishop are called to ensure together. never hesitated to call on It cannot however be denied that the Edict of Milan was Christians to be loyal to civil in reality something of a “failed beginning.” The events that authority, while at the same ensued in fact opened the way to a long and anguishing time he taught that civil authority must guarantee history. The historical and unjustifiable admixture of political freedom to citizens on power with religion can represent a useful starting point the personal and social in understanding the various phases distinguishable in the level. In this way there developed a recognition of history of the practice of religious freedom. The situation changed greatly with the promulgation of the boundaries of the public the Declaration Dignitatis humanae. What is fundamentally weal, whose security citizens new about the Conciliar teaching? The Council, appealing and authority alike are to the light of right reason as confirmed and illuminated by called to ensure together. divine revelation, affirmed that man has the right neither to be constrained to act against his conscience nor to be prevented from acting in conformity with it. With the Conciliar declaration we actually move beyond the classic doctrine of tolerance to recognize that “the human person has a right to religious freedom,” and this right “continues to exist even in those who do not live up to their obligation of seeking the truth and adhering to it” (DH 2). According to Nikolaus Lobkowicz, formerly Rector of the University of Munich and President of the Catholic University of Eichstätt, “the extraordinary quality of the declaration Dignitatis humanae consists in the fact that it shifted the issue of religious freedom from the notion of truth to the notion of the rights of a human person. Although 1 G. LOMBARDI, Persecuzioni, laicità, libertà religiosa. Dall’Editto di Milano alla “Dignitatis humanae”, Studium Roma 1991, 128.

HUMANITAS Nº 5 pp. 10 - 19

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error may have no rights, a person has rights even when he or she is wrong. This is, of course, not a right before God; it is a right with respect to other people, the community and the State.”2

Practicing and conceiving religious freedom today In actual fact, talking about religious freedom today means facing up to an emergency which is progressively taking on a global character. According to the accurate study by Brian J. Grim and Roger Finke3, between 2000 and 2007 there were as many as 123 countries in which some kind of religious persecution was evident, and unfortunately that number is constantly increasing. This data, a worrying expression of a serious malaise of civilizations, encourages us to focus more closely on the subject without The situation changed neglecting the debates, sometimes very lively and certainly greatly with the never stagnant, on the nature and correct interpretation promulgation of the of the declaration Dignitatis humanae and on its necessary Declaration Dignitatis adoption. humanae. What is First of all, the content of the idea of “religious freedom,” fundamentally new about the Conciliar teaching? which at the superficial level attracts wide approval, has The Council, appealing to in reality always to some degree lacked clarity. It is in fact the light of right reason as embroiled in a rather complex tangle involving at least three confirmed and illuminated serious and intertwined difficulties: a) the relationship betby divine revelation, ween objective truth and the individual conscience, b) the affirmed that man has way that religious communities relate to state power, c) from the right neither to be the Christian theological point of view, the question of the constrained to act against interpretation of the universality of salvation in Christ, by his conscience nor to be contrast with the plurality of religions and world visions prevented from acting in (“substantive” ethical visions). conformity with it. In the second place, we need to acknowledge that in addition to these more or less classic problems in the interpretation of religious freedom, there are new ones that are no less crucial. Let me mention three of these problems. The first is that of the relation between the personal religious quest and its communal expression. The question is often raised as to how far religious freedom can be limited to a merely individual expression. On the other hand, there is also the question as to the conditions on which a “religious group” can lay claim to public recognition in a pluralistic interreligious and intercultural society. We are here confronted with the delicate question concerning the power of the legitimately constituted public authority to make a distinction between an authentic religion and an inauthentic one. Thus the facts confirm that the distinction between 2 N. LOBKOWICZ, Il Faraone Amenhotep e la Dignitatis Humanae, in Oasis 8 (2008) 17-23. 3 The Price of Freedom Denied. Religious Persecution and Conflict in the Twenty-first Century, Cambridge University Press, Nueva York 2011.

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«Its provisions, signed by the two Augusti—Constantine and Licinius—marked not only the gradual end of Christian persecutions but, above all, was the birth certificate of religious freedom. In a certain sense, we can trace as far back as the Edict of Milan the very first emergence in history of the two phenomena that today we call “religious freedom” and “the secular state.”»

Constantine (detail of the mosaic), Basilica Hagia Sophia, Istambul.

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political power and religions is not as obvious as may appear at first sight. There is a problem of a similar type in the distinction between religions and “sects”: this is a question as old as the Roman notion of religio licita [lawful religion], but it has recently become much more acute for a variety of reasons: a general trend towards fragmentation, the proliferation of “communities” within the Christian world, and the agnostic position taken up by most legislators with respect to religious phenomena. Finally it is important to note that one of the most burning questions today in the arena of debate on religious freedom is that of its connection with freedom of conversion. For all these reasons, reflecting on religious freedom and practicing it seems to be much more difficult nowadays than we might have expected— especially after the Conciliar declaration.

Thorny issues to be resolved In this context, if we are to resolve certain thorny issues, at least two types of considerations are useful and important. The first concerns the nexus between religious freedom and peace in society. Not only actual practice but also various recent studies Between 2000 and 2007 have demonstrated that there exist very close correlations there were as many as between the two realities. Though in the abstract we can 123 countries in which imagine a type of legislation capable of reducing the level some kind of religious of diversity between religions, thereby virtually eliminating persecution was evident, the conflicts that may derive from them, the exact opposite and unfortunately that proves to be the case in practice. The more the state imposes number is constantly limitations, the more religion-based conflicts increase. This increasing. result is in fact perfectly comprehensible: imposing religious practices or banning them by law, in the evident absence of any possibility of modifying the corresponding personal beliefs as well, only increases resentment and frustration, which then manifest themselves in the shape of conflicts in the public arena. The second problem is even more complex, and it calls for rather more careful reflection. It concerns the connection between religious freedom and the attitude of the state—and, at various levels, of all the state institutions—with respect to the religious communities present in civil society. The evolution of liberal democratic states has increasingly modified the equilibrium which has traditionally been the basis of political power. Even up to a few decades ago, substantial and explicit reference would be made to anthropological structures generally recognized, at least in a broad sense, as constitutive dimensions of religious experience: birth, marriage, procreation, education, death.

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Cardinal Angelo Scola, Archbishop of Milan, with the Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I, during his visit to the Ambrosian city.

What happens now that this reference, identifiable as possessing religious origin, has been called into question and held to be inapplicable? Decisional procedures have developed in politics and they have taken an absolute character, tending to be unconditionally self-justifying. This is confirmed by the fact that the classic problem of moral judgment on laws has increasingly become transformed into a problem of religious freedom. The Bishops’ Conference of the United States explicitly speaks of the damage to religious

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”THE RIGHT OF PUBLIC EXPRESSION OF ONE’S FAITH MAY BE RESPECTED EVERYWHERE“ Pope Francis’ Message to Cardinal Scola on the occasion of the 17th Centenary of the Edict of Milan.

Pope Francis sent a message—through the former Secretary of State Tarcisio Bertone—to Cardinal Angelo Scola, archbishop of Milan, for the visit of the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople, Bartholomew I, on the occasion of the 1700th anniversary of the signing of the Edict of Milan. In the text, “the Supreme Pontiff sends his fraternal greeting to his His Holiness Bartholomew I, and sends a thought of welcome to the other illustrious guests gathered for the happy circumstance and rejoices with the beloved Ambrosian Church, with the civil authorities and with the whole city of Milan.” The Pope said in his message that “this historical decision” which gave religious freedom to Christians, “opened new ways to the Gospel and contributed decisively to the birth of the European culture.” The Holy Father expressed the desire that, “today as then, the common witness of Christians of the East and West, sustained by the Spirit of the Risen One, will agree to the spread of the message of salvation in Europe and the entire world and that, thanks to the foresight of civil authorities, the right to publicly express one’s faith will be respected everywhere, and that the contribution that Christianity continues to offer to culture and society in our time will be accepted without prejudice.” At the of the message, the Holy Father assured “all those present of his closeness in prayer” and sent to Cardinal Angelo Scola, and to the whole flock entrusted to his pastoral care, “a special heartfelt Apostolic Blessing, in pledge of copious heavenly graces.”

freedom caused by the HHS Mandate, that is the Obama health reform, which imposes on various kinds of religious institutions (especially hospitals and schools) the duty of offering to their employees insurance policies which include contraceptives, abortions, and sterilization procedures.4 The theoretical presupposition of this evolution goes back basically to the French model of laicité which has seemed to many to provide a response sufficient to guarantee full religious freedom, especially for minority groups. Laicité is based on the idea of the in-difference—defined as “neutrality” —of 4 United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, Our First, Most Cherished Liberty. A Statement on Religious Liberty, April 12, 2012.

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state institutions with respect to the religious phenomenon, and therefore at first sight it seems suitable for the creation of a sphere favorable to the religious freedom of all. This conception is now fairly widespread in European juridical and political culture. On closer inspection however, it emerges that the categories of religious freedom and the so-called “neutrality” of the state in the laicité model have been every-increasingly superimposed on one another, ending up by being identified with one another. Essentially, for various reasons of a theoretical and a historical nature, French-style laicité has ended up becoming a model that is hostile towards the religious phenomenon. Why? First of all, the very idea of “neutrality” has proved to be somewhat problematic, above all because it is not applicable to a civil society whose precedence the state must always respect, limiting itself to the governance of it and not claiming to be entitled to administer it. Now, respecting civil society implies recognizing an There is a problem of objective fact: today in western civil societies, above all the a similar type in the European ones, the deepest divisions are those between se- distinction between cularist culture and the religious phenomenon, and not—as religions and “sects”: is often erroneously assumed—between believers from the this is a question as old various faiths. Failing to recognize this fact, the proper and as the Roman notion necessary non-confessionality of the state has ended up of religio licita [lawful dissimulating, under the idea of “neutrality,” the support of religion], but it has the state for a vision of the world which rests on a secular recently become much and godless ethos. But this is only one among the various more acute for a variety of cultural visions (“substantive” kinds of ethic) which inhabit reasons: a general trend pluralistic society. Thus the so-called “neutral” state, far from towards fragmentation, being neutral in reality, constructs its own specific culture, the proliferation of the culture of secularism. Through legislation secularism “communities” within the then comes to dominate, ultimately exercising a negative Christian world, and the power with respect to other identities—especially religious agnostic position taken ones—present in civil societies, and tends to marginalize up by most legislators them if not indeed actually to expel them from the public with respect to religious sphere. The state, putting itself in the place of civil society, phenomena. slides, even if involuntarily, towards that foundational position that laicité intended to reject in its preoccupation with the “religious.” Under a semblance of neutrality and the objectivity of law, lies concealed and is actively diffused—at least in essence—a culture strongly marked by a secularized vision of man and of the world and devoid of any openness to the transcendent. In a pluralistic society this is in itself legitimate, but only if it remains as one vision among others. Should the state appropriate the secularist vision as its own, it ends up inevitably limiting religious freedom. How are we to find a remedy for this serious state of affairs? By rethinking the theme of the non-confessionality of the state within the framework of a

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renewed idea of religious freedom. What we need is a state which, without appropriating any specific vision, does not interpret its own non-confessionalism as “detachment,” as an impossible neutralization of the world visions that find expression in civil society, but rather opens up spaces within which each personal and social subject can bring its own contribution to the construction of the common good.5 The question arises however: is calling for liberty of religion for the various communities and asking for respect for the “peculiarities” of The theoretical their minority moral sensibilities the best way to deal with presupposition of this this delicate situation? Even if right and proper, this demand evolution goes back basically to the French may be enough on its own to reinforce in the public arena model of laicité which has the idea that the actual content of religious identities is made seemed to many to provide up of nothing more than long-obsolete mythologies and foa response sufficient to lklore. It is absolutely necessary that this legitimate claim is guarantee full religious made as part of a broader agenda involving a clearly-stated freedom, especially for hierarchy of elements. These far too brief pointers not only demonstrate how minority groups. Laicité is based on the idea of the complex the issue of religious freedom remains, but above in-difference—defined as all they encourage us to acknowledge how, today more than “neutrality” —of state ever, this issue represents the most sensitive litmus test for institutions with respect to the level of civilization in our pluralistic societies. The truth is that if religious freedom is not guaranteed the religious phenomenon, and therefore at first and accorded the first place in the hierarchy of fundamental sight it seems suitable for rights, the whole hierarchy crumbles. Today religious freedom the creation of a sphere looks as though it is the bellwether of more wide-ranging challenges favorable to the religious connected with the development and practice, on the local and the freedom of all. universal level, of new anthropological, social, and cosmological foundations of a life lived together within the civil societies of this third millennium. Obviously this process cannot signify a return to the past, but it has to take place in a context of respect for the pluralistic nature of our society. Therefore, as I have had occasion to say on other occasions, it must take as its starting point the practical common good involved in our being together. Appealing then to the principle of communication rightly understood, personal and social subjects who inhabit civil society must both present their own narrative and listen to the narrative others construct for themselves, with a view to an ordered reciprocal recognition aiming at the good of all.

5 Cf. A. SCOLA, Buone ragioni per la vita in comune, Mondadori, Milán 2010, 16-17.

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For a shared path In this connection, I would simply like to refer to a condition I consider to be absolutely essential for those setting out on this arduous path, a condition whose fulfillment cannot be postponed. Taking note of the teaching of Dignitatis humanae in connection with the initium libertatis positively established by the Edict of 313, according to which adherence to truth is possible only in a voluntary and personal way while external coercion is contrary to its nature, it has to be acknowledged that this double condition often remains basically unrealizable. Why? Because we do not at the same time follow “the duty, and even For various reasons of a the right, to seek the truth” (DH 3) which is what frees every theoretical and a historical proper affirmation of religious freedom from the suspicion nature, French-style laicité of being just another name for religious indifferentism–a has ended up becoming religious indifferentism that cannot fail to be, for all practical a model that is hostile purposes, a specific world vision which, in the present histo- towards the religious rical situation, tends increasingly to justify the hegemony of phenomenon. Why? First of all, the very idea of one particular vision of the world over the others. How are we to react then to the objection that so many do “neutrality” has proved to not fulfill the obligation to seek the truth in order to adhere be somewhat problematic, to it? First of all, we need to repeat that that too is always the above all because it is choice of a world vision which has citizenship in a pluralisitc not applicable to a civil society, while at the same time we must emphasize that it society whose precedence cannot surreptitiously be made the foundation for the non- the state must always respect, limiting itself to the confessionality of the state. More importantly we must point to the free invitation governance of it and not addressed to such persons to reflect on the question of what claiming to be entitled to administer it. their obligation consists in. Augustine, a genius at giving expression to human restlessness, had grasped the secret of it, as Benedict XVI observes: “It is not we who possess the Truth after having sought it, but the Truth that seeks us out and possesses us.”6 In this sense, it is truth itself, through the significance of the relations and circumstances of life in which each person is a protagonist, which presents as the “serious event” in human existence and human cohabitation. The truth which seeks us is evidenced in the insuppressible longing which makes mankind aspire to it: “Quid enim fortius desiderat anima quam veritatem?7 And this longing respects the freedom of all, even of the person who calls himself agnostic, indifferent, or an atheist. Religious freedom would otherwise be an empty word. 6 BENEDICT XVI, General Audience, November 14, 2012. 7 «What does man desire deeply than truth?”, Saint Augustine, Commentary on the Gospel of John 26:5.

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Ibero-America Thought in Depth BY ALVER METALLI

A lberto Methol Ferré predicted and foresaw the election


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of Benedict XVI, and glimpsed the election of Pope Francis in the horizon. In 2005, on April 6 to be more exact, and therefore thirteen days before the white smoke that took Ratzinger to the chair of Peter appeared, Methol Ferré aligned himself with him. The Argentinean newspaper La Nación declared that he was a “great partisan of Joseph Ratzinger.” Moreover, he said: “I think he is the most adequate man to be Pope in these moments of history.” He considered that the time for a Latin American Pope still had not arrived. More time was necessary. Not much, he hurried to declare: “Within a couple of years…” Now the time has come. And it is an Argentinean Pope, who additionally Methol Ferré knew very well during his life, and with whom he met and collaborated closely. The relationship between Bergoglio and Methol Ferré reaches far back. An Uruguayan friend, Elbio López, asserts that they both met “intellectually” in the ‘70s, while they met, face to face, for the first time in 1978, in the wave of the impulse that both were trying to imprint, in Argentina as well, on the preparatory debate for the third General Conference of the Latin American Episcopate that took place in Puebla, Mexico. Francisco Piñón, Rector of the University del Salvador of Buenos Aires during 1975-1980, recalls the moment of that first encounter: “It was a three person lunch that took place at the Colegio Máximo de San Miguel, the pontifical seat, at that time, of the Jesuit Faculty of Philosophy and Theology which was part of the University del Salvador.” There were two fundamental points in HUMANITAS Nº 5 pp. 20 - 25

Portrait of Alberto Methol Ferré (1929 - 2009).

the conversation. “We spoke of the historical moment of Latin America and the responsibility of the Church in that juncture. The subject of culture, as it was being outlined in the preparatory stage of the Conference of Puebla in which Methol participated actively, and that of popular religiosity, the same subject of Liberation Theology. Both were thoroughly discussed during the conversation.” In Argentina a nucleus had been formed, a theological line, that puts the accent on the existential, on religiosity, and on popular culture. That is to say, more on History than on Sociology. The Argentineans Lucio Gera, Gerardo Farrell, and Juan Carlos Scannone, among others, were part of such a nucleus. They were well known names and adopted both by Bergoglio and Methol Ferré. They all had in common an emphasis on the subject of popular religiosity, the poor, the culture, and Latin American history; they developed a much more comprehensive approach of national realities that, consequently, conflicted with liberation theology subordinated to Marxist hermeneutics. Bergoglio identified himself with this theological continuity and thought, a much stronger current in Argentina than in other Latin American countries and that was being articulated in meetings, publications, and


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magazines (among which Nexo is worth mentioning, and of which Bergoglio was an assiduous reader). Guzmán Carriquiry, another compatriot of Methol Ferré, highlights this in a letter recently written to Ferré’s son Marcos: “I know very well how [Bergoglio] appreciated and admired Methol Ferré. He followed all his writings with great interest and fruitfully, particularly those of Nexo magazine.” Methol Ferré often travelled to Buenos Aires, and many times he crossed the large door of Rivadavia 415 and went upstairs to the second floor. They were visits that he appreciated, that lasted far beyond the restrictions of the protocol hours. But those formalities were very little respected by his same interlocutor. The author has more than once witnessed the seriousness of such encounters, the benefit obtained from them and the satisfaction with which Methol Ferré left the Cardinal’s house. A mutual satisfaction. On May 16, 2009, Bergoglio agreed to present the interview-book held with Methol Ferré, La América Latina del siglo XXI [The Latin America of the 21st Century], at the auditorium of Santa Fe Avenue in Buenos Aires. The room was overflowing. Bergoglio was the first to take de floor, and he spoke of the book as a text “of deep metaphysics.” “The subject of Methol Ferré’s metaphysics is the real being as such—determined and limited—who opens the doors to the concrete universal.” He asserted that, on the contrary, “the imported ideologies generate abstract universalities,” and named two issues that the book he was presenting discloses: that of God and the Church, and the issue of globalization. “Methol Ferré,” said Bergoglio, “highlights how the issue of God cannot be raised outside a people.” The interviewbook, upheld by such an authorized presentation, appeared simultaneously in Spanish, Italian, and Portuguese, this last edition in Brazil, to which very soon a Mexican edition was added. Cardinal Bergoglio purchased a certain number of books and during some time he gave them as a presents to priests who visited him.

There are affinities of thought, spontaneous agreements between Bergoglio and Methol Ferré and others, that Bergoglio has shared and made his own. In 2005, in the Preface of the Spanish edition of Una apuesta por América Latina [A commitment to Latin America] by Guzmán Carriquiry, Bergoglio asserts the need to “walk the roads of integration towards the configuration of the South American Union and the Great South American Fatherland.” Alone, isolated—he argues—“we count very little and we will get nowhere.” Isolation, to conceive each other as separate, leads to “a road without exit that would condemn us to the condition of marginal segments, impoverished and dependent on the great world powers.” He repeats the opinion, almost word by word, of Methol Ferré, convinced that “he who is not a part of the State-Continent will end up, in a global world, at the margin of history, where one can only express oneself in terms of lamentation, anger, or silence.” It is the choir of history, another Metholian expression that refers to the Greek theater, where the choir intervenes to comment on the heroic deed of the prime actors. “During the 20th and 21st Centuries only the Continent-States can be protagonists,” Methol Ferré affirms peremptorily. In 2011, during the celebrations of the 200 years of independence of the Latin American countries from Spain, Bergoglio wrote the introduction to the Spanish edition of the second book by Doctor Carriquiry, El bicentenario de la independencia de los países latinoamericanos. Ayer y hoy. [The Bicentennial of the Independence of the Latin American Countries. Yesterday and Today]. In the Preface he affirms that the author’s quotation of Methol Ferré on page 125 “very timely,” “where the brilliant thinker of Rio de la Plata refers to the historical decadence of the ideologies on which was built the various series of hermeneutics on the independence of the Latin American countries: after the evident limitations of liberal topics, interpretations inspired on messianic atheisms and its ‘Salvationist’ utopias abounded, and which today are inspired in that current of nihilist hedonism in which the crises of the ideological creeds come together.” Here


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again the Metholian echoes resound strongly. As another Uruguayan remarks—the Bishop Pablo Jaime Galimberti—Cardinal Bergoglio points out that “one of the trends that is a menace to the culture of the American peoples is ‘adolescent progression,’ a sort of enthusiasm for progress that depletes mediation, aborting the possibility of a sensible and foundational progress, connected with the peoples’ roots.” The expression “adolescent progression” —observes Galimberti—“is in the same bent of what Methol Ferré calls ‘libertine atheism’ that lives and disseminates, in perfect symbiosis, through television and the new technologies… Libertine atheism is the exaltation of the corporeal nature, the apotheosis of the body without a you, at the service of an anxious Eros.” In fact, libertine atheism for Methol Ferré “is one of the forms that contemporary atheism assumes from a certain moment onwards, as a substitute of a messianic atheism that had committed suicide… The old aristocratic atheism turned into an agnostic hedonism whose ultimate logic is a libertine atheism of the masses.” As for Bergoglio, there underlies a requirement for beauty and mercy in the condition of man, so for Methol Ferré also “the truth of libertine atheism is the perception that existence has an intimate destiny of pleasure, that life itself is made for satisfaction.” Saint Francis, for Methol Ferré as well as for Bergoglio that took his name as Pope, is one of the most extraordinary examples of beauty captured and reflected in a historic human figure. A little before the first anniversary of Methol Ferré’s death, we organized a symposium to remember his person, to start a first systematization of his thought and initiate an appreciation of his vast intellectual production throughout Latin America. Bergoglio, Archbishop at that time, sent to the symposium a handwritten letter. He invited us to remember Methol Ferré as a “great man that has done so much good to the Latin American conscience and to the Church.” In a few words he sculptured praise that could well appear in a book of Latin American history. “His acute and creative thought knew how to look with perspective

both at the roots and the utopias, and this made him a man faithful to the reality of the peoples.” In October 2010, Bergoglio remembered Methol Ferré again in a text of a vast spectrum that he wrote to prepare for the celebrations of the 200 years of the Latin American countries: “Hacia un bicentenario en justicia y solidaridad (2020-2016). Nosotros como ciudadanos, nosotros como pueblo” [Towards a Bicentennial in Justice and Solidarity (2010-2016). We as Citizens, We as a People]. Looking at the continent today, Bergoglio highlights from the very first page an increasingly marked trend to exalt the individual, to affirm his/her supremacy and that of his/her rights over the relational dimension of man. “It is the kingdom of the ‘I think’, ‘my opinion is’, ‘I believe’ beyond reality itself, the moral parameters, the normative references, not to mention the precepts of religious order.” And here, in this analytical opening on contemporary Latin American, he refers to a similar concept suggested by “a dear friend already deceased, Alberto Methol Ferré.” A friend who described the same trend as “A libertine, hedonist, amoral, consumptive individualism that lacked an ethical or moral horizon.” For him, it was the new challenge for society and for the Church in Latin America. He is the only lay thinker, together with Leopoldo Marechal, who has been quoted in an official document, a sort of historical encyclical on Latin America written by Bergoglio that on each page oozes the same vision as Methol Ferré’s. Bergolgio heedfully followed the last months of Methol Ferré’s illness. Several times he asked us to inform him of his state of health. I know he wished to confer on him a distinction from the Catholic University of which he was Great Chancellor. I had committed myself to inform him if Alberto’s conditions improved in order to fulfill his intentions. Unfortunately, things went another way and Methol Ferré died in November 2009. In September 2011 the Civil Association Alberto Methol Ferré was founded, of which Bergoglio is an honorary member.


Translated by Marlene Hyslop

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Lumen Fidei, Pope Francis’ encyclical, is not a shooting star,

but the complete fulfillment, the final design, of a brilliant theological constellation covering the skies of our time. The work of John Paul II, Benedict XVI, and Francis, the last three Pontiffs of the Catholic Church, seen against a background where John XXIII and the Second Vatican Council can be discerned, till today. The center of this figure is, to be sure, Christ and his Grace, which comes to men through the so-called theological virtues –Faith, Hope, and Love– in man’s encounter with God. By means of these virtues the Word of God raises man’s spirit and heart. Faith and Reason, Saved in Hope, God is Love, the encyclicals of previous Pontiffs in whose titles these words appear, already spoke of those virtues. Benedict XVI, in a brilliant gesture, finished his pontificate and initiated that of Francis in a time which he proclaimed to be the Year of Faith. Lumen Fidei is its culmination. It appears to me that there is a live theology here; the living discourse faith acquires in Christianity. Man’s fundamental encounter with God. Perhaps the first and surprising thing is the main metaphor in this text: the light. It is neither casual nor rhetorical at all. Man’s fundamental religiosity, it should be remembered, has recognized itself many times in the marvelous figure of the sun’s light which illuminates human existence with the powerful rhythm of day and night. The allusion in paragraph 1 of the encyclical to the Sol Invictus is therefore not a coincidence. The allusion invites us to look from the primary depths of man’s religiosity in which even paganism could recognize itself, as professed by the Egyptians, Chaldeans, or Indo-Europeans—by all On the left page: The Transfiguration, by Fra Angelico. Fresco, San Marco, Florence.

HUMANITAS Nº 5 pp. 26 - 33

Year of Faith 2012-2013

The Light of Faith


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peoples, probably—and illustrated by monuments such as the pyramids, the Parthenon, or Machu-Picchu. It should even be remembered that in Plato’s Republic the Good is represented by the sun and its influx on the universe. Christian faith—the metaphor of the light seems to suggest to us—has to do with this deep and primary dimension of the reality of the universe, with an historical underground of universal anthropological validity, regardless of the obscurity that still affects its essential content. Faith was present, of course, in John Paul II’s encyclical Fides et Ratio, when Cardinal Ratzinger—Benedict XVI—was the Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. In that remarkable text, however, Ratio is the rather predominant element: that encyclical was a call to human intelligence to open itself to the Word of God from the very depths of its own constitution; hence from metaphysics. Today Lumen Fidei, Francis’ work, recovers Benedict XVI’s original view, it exalts and spreads it. Francis’ influence becomes explicit in the initial passage of this encyclical. There he faces the main contemporary objection to what faith might mean: faith is anachronistic; a behaviour typical of old societies from which the adult man of our times, “satisfied with his reason,” is liberated. To be sure, that objection exhibits the positivistic progressivism which animated eighteenth-century Enlightenment, whose echoes still resound. The encyclical is, so to speak, more upto-date and points to Nietzsche, to the “autonomous uncertainty,” of which he speaks in a letter to his sister Elisabeth, quoted in paragraph 2 of the encyclical. The will to power and nihilism certainly underlie that “autonomy.” Faith, replies Francis, is not a leap in the dark; it is not a blind emotion or a subjective light. It is an objective and shared light, which illumines not the fleeting moments of human life, but this existence in its entirety. It is God’s gift, the supernatural virtue the Spirit of God infuses into man. His incarnated Word in the human figure of Christ, whom man encounters actually and historically. That Word was heard by Abraham, the oldest of Israel’s

Year of Faith 2012-2013 «Faith was present, of course, in John Paul II’s encyclical Fides et Ratio, when Cardinal Ratzinger—Benedict XVI—was the Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. In that remarkable text, however, Ratio is the rather predominant element: that encyclical was a call to human intelligence to open itself to the Word of God from the very depths of its own constitution; hence from metaphysics. Today Lumen Fidei, Francis’ work, recovers Benedict XVI’s original view, it exalts and spreads it.»

patriarchs, with whom the higher religions begin, from Judaism to Christianity and Islam. God asks Abraham to embrace his Word, to be faithful to Him. And He makes him the promise of a new life. In Christ that promise becomes reality; it is fulfilled. To be a Christian is to encounter Him. Every human life is certainly marked by encounters that turn out to be decisive, in one sense or another; they form part of its fate. The encounter with God is absolutely decisive: it takes place in Faith and consecrates life. In Christianity we are in the presence of what is originally an historical event that lasts: brought into the testimony of those who experienced it at first hand, narrated in the books of the Bible, and lived daily, like the light of the sun, by the Christian. Thus, a history of millennia that has had and retains a sole profound sense. A millennia of lives constituted


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and ordered by a powerful force, by a radical truth inhabiting the innermost place of the particular conscience of each man that lives it. The force that makes him a human being. The life of the soul that makes us an I and a You in an intimate personal communion which, ultimately and fundamentally, is a communion with Christ, who gathers us and in whom we are and live. God himself become man, born of a woman, who embraces death to fulfill love’s design, which is life in plenitude. If Christ has not risen, that design, our Faith, would be vain, said St. Paul. Why did all this occur? Simply because that great creature of God, that is man, in exercising his freedom, rebels against Him. It refuses the encounter, does not recognize Him. Someone has induced man to believe that he himself is God, not He who created him. In the book of Genesis that someone is represented by the serpent—the devil’s incarnation—, which suggests this to Eve; yet the great heresies have repeated it, from that of Arius, in the first centuries of the Christian era, to Feuerbach’s and Marx’s (if not idealism’s) materialism in the nineteenth century. The consequence of this demonic rebelliousness, to which man seems to be naturally inclined in what is but a falsification of his liberty, is sin. And this, also naturally, led man to its most logical consequence, viz. death. If man is not a creature of God, if there is no possible plenitude in him, he is naturally doomed to die like any other being of this world. Vain is, then, our faith. It is no longer faith. Any idolatry will take its place: pleasure, power, money, what is most vulgar. It could even be knowledge, beauty, the harmony of the universe, as a mere substitute in the absence of God. The God speaking to Abraham is the creating God that, as St. Paul says to the Romans, “calls into existence the things that do not exist.” The God speaking to Moses on Sinai reveals to him His name, but the people “cannot bear the mystery of God’s hiddenness.” It prefers to worship the idol “because it is the work of our own hands,” a pretext “for setting ourselves at the center of reality” (LF, 13). Lumen Fidei stresses the figure of the mediator in the faith of Israel. Moses was a mediator. John the Baptist will also be one; those who were at the Cross were mediators,

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just as those who went to the empty sepulcher or were at the Last Supper; those who embrace the good news, the evangelists, will be mediators too. Ultimately, the Christian community, the Church, is a mediator. In mediation there is trust in another person, there is a Faith that makes us grow, that makes us participants of its view. This is, basically, a manifestation of love. Christ is a mediator in whom we see the Father, whom only he knew. God’s creative work, broken by sin, can only be restored, saved, by God Himself, by God’s very creative force, now merciful, which takes upon itself the tragic fate of the creature He has loved for its own sake: man. It even takes upon itself that creature’s punishment, viz. death. Faith reopens man to his highest vocation. It doesn’t abandon him. Faith shall recognize him with mercy. Love is all powerful.


Translated by Rafael Simian

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TO THE BISHOPS PRIESTS AND DEACONS CONSECRATED PERSONS AND THE LAY FAITHFUL ON FAITH 1. The light of Faith: this is how the Church’s tradition speaks of the great gift brought by Jesus. In John’s Gospel, Christ says of himself: «I have come as light into the world, that whoever believes in me may not remain in darkness» (Jn 12:46). Saint Paul uses the same image: «God who said ‘Let light shine out of darkness,’ has shone in our hearts» (2 Cor 4:6). The pagan world, which hungered for light, had seen the growth of the cult of the sun god, Sol Invictus, invoked each day at sunrise. Yet though the sun was born anew each morning, it was clearly incapable of casting its light on all of human existence. The sun does not illumine all reality; its rays cannot penetrate to the shadow of death, the place where men’s eyes are closed to its light. «No one — Saint Justin Martyr writes — has ever been ready to die for his faith in the sun».[1] Conscious of the immense horizon which their faith opened before them, Christians invoked Jesus as the true sun «whose rays bestow life». [2] To Martha, weeping for the death of her brother Lazarus, Jesus said: «Did I not tell you that if you believed, you would see the glory of God?» (Jn 11:40). Those who believe, see; they see with a light that illumines their entire journey, for it comes from the risen Christ, the morning star which never sets.

AN ILLUSORY LIGHT? 2. Yet in speaking of the light of faith, we can almost hear the objections of many of our contemporaries. In modernity, that light might have been considered sufficient for societies of old, but was felt to be of no use for new times, for a humanity come of age, proud of its rationality and anxious to explore the future in novel ways. Faith thus appeared to some as an illusory light, preventing mankind from boldly setting out in quest of knowledge. The young Nietzsche encouraged his sister Elisabeth to take risks, to tread «new paths… with all the uncertainty of one who must find his own way», adding that «this is where humanity’s paths part: if you want peace of soul and happiness, then believe, but if you want to be a follower of truth, then seek».[3] Belief would be incompatible with seeking.

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From this starting point Nietzsche was to develop his critique of Christianity for diminishing the full meaning of human existence and stripping life of novelty and adventure. Faith would thus be the illusion of light, an illusion which blocks the path of a liberated humanity to its future. 3. In the process, faith came to be associated with darkness. There were those who tried to save faith by making room for it alongside the light of reason. Such room would open up wherever the light of reason could not penetrate, wherever certainty was no longer possible. Faith was thus understood either as a leap in the dark, to be taken in the absence of light, driven by blind emotion, or as a subjective light, capable perhaps of warming the heart and bringing personal consolation, but not something which could be proposed to others as an objective and shared light which points the way. Slowly but surely, however, it would become evident that the light of autonomous reason is not enough to illumine the future; ultimately the future remains shadowy and fraught with fear of the unknown. As a result, humanity renounced the search for a great light, Truth itself, in order to be content with smaller lights which illumine the fleeting moment yet prove incapable of showing the way. Yet in the absence of light everything becomes confused; it is impossible to tell good from evil, or the road to our destination from other roads which take us in endless circles, going nowhere.

A LIGHT TO BE RECOVERED 4. There is an urgent need, then, to see once again that faith is a light, for once the flame of faith dies out, all other lights begin to dim. The light of faith is unique, since it is capable of illuminating every aspect of human existence. A light this powerful cannot come from ourselves but from a more primordial source: in a word, it must come from God. Faith is born of an encounter with the living God who calls us and reveals his love, a love which precedes us and upon which we can lean for security and for building our lives. Transformed by this love, we gain fresh vision, new eyes to see; we realize that it contains a great promise of fulfilment, and that a vision of the future opens up before us. Faith, received from God as a supernatural gift, becomes a light for our way, guiding our journey through time. On the one hand, it is a light coming from the past, the light of the foundational memory of the life of Jesus which revealed his perfectly trustworthy love, a love capable of triumphing over death. Yet since Christ has risen and draws us beyond death, faith is also a light coming from the future and opening before us vast horizons which guide us beyond our isolated selves towards the breadth of communion. We come to see that faith does not dwell in shadow and gloom; it is a light for our darkness. Dante, in the Divine Comedy, after professing his faith to Saint Peter, describes that light as a ÂŤspark, which then becomes a burning flame and like a heavenly star within me glimmersÂť.[4] It is this light of faith that I would now like to consider, so that it can grow and enlighten the present, becoming a star to brighten the horizon of our journey at a time when mankind is particularly in need of light. We publish the first four items of the Encyclical Lumen Fidei. The complete text can be downloaded on our website www.review.humanitas.cl

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Newman on Councils and their Aftermaths BY IAN KER

Before, during, and after the First Vatican Council, Newman adumbrated what I think we can call a mini-theology of Councils of the Church, which has much relevance for our own post-conciliar time. The first point to be made is that Newman was in no doubt that Councils had “ever been times of great trial.�

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ince the Second Vatican Council was a council that was almost entirely concerned with the Church, the document in which the Council examines the very nature of the Church itself, Lumen Gentium, must surely be the most important. And it is in his ecclesiology that Newman perhaps most importantly anticipates the Council. Now it is of course only too well known that Newman was a lonely pioneer of the laity in the highly clerical Church of the nineteenth century, the author of what is held to be the classic text on the laity, his article “On Consulting the Faithful in Matters of Doctrine.” And there is no doubt that he would have welcomed the chapter on the laity in the Constitution. The other chapter that attracted most attention at the time of and after the Council was the chapter on the bishops. And Newman would certainly have seen this chapter as a necessary addition to and in that sense modification of the definition of papal infallibility at Vatican I, which had intended to produce a larger teaching about the Church, an intention that was frustrated by the indefinite suspension of the Council. To adapt his words about Pope St. Leo and the Council of Chalcedon, this chapter on the “apostolic college” (# 22), “without of course touching the definition” of the previous Council, “trimmed the balance of doctrine by completing it.”1 However, there are two other chapters, which have been comparatively ignored in comparison with the chapters on the laity and bishops, but which constitute the Council’s fundamental understanding of the nature of the Church and which were anticipated by Newman. I

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* Presentation of Ian Ker during the Symposium held before Newman’s beatification (Birgmingham, September, 2010).

1 Difficuties of Anglicans, ii. 312.

HUMANITAS Nº 5 pp. 34 - 49

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In other words, Newman in practice means by “the faithful” not simply the laity but what Lumen Gentium calls 'the whole body of the faithful” (# 12), that is to say, he has the same conception of the Church as the organic communion of the baptized and not primarily as consisting of clergy and laity, an understanding that leads inexorably either to clericalism or to what I have called “laicism.”

refer, of course, to the first two chapters, “The Mystery of the Church” and “The People of God,” which define in thoroughly scriptural and patristic terms the Council’s definition of what Newman would have called “the idea of the Church.” Here we find that same idea of the Church as Newman had discovered for himself as an Anglican from his reading of the Greek Fathers, who saw the Church as primarily the communion of those who have received the gift of the Holy Spirit in Baptism, the Church being therefore in Newman’s words the Holy Spirit’s “especial dwelling-place,” the Spirit having come “to make us one in Him who had died and was alive, that is, to form the Church,” “the one mystical body of Christ… quickened by the Spirit,” and “one” by virtue of the Spirit “giving it life.”2 Or, as Lumen Gentium puts it, “The Spirit dwells in the Church and in the hearts of the faithful as in a temple” (# 4), the people of God who “are reborn… from water and the Holy Spirit,” a “messianic people” in whom the Spirit “dwells as in a temple” (# 9). The two consequences of neglecting these two fundamental chapters and exaggerating the significance of the chapters on the bishops and the laity would, I suspect, have easily been predicted by Newman: namely, an excessively Gallican emphasis on so-called “collegiality,” an emphasis that ignores the fact that the Church is papal as well as episcopal, and a preoccupation with the laity which has led to what I call “laicism,” which has often taken the place of the old clericalism. In fact, a closer look at “On Consulting the Faithful in Matters of Doctrine” shows that, while certainly Newman does speak of the “laity” in the essay, the evidence he marshals from the time of the Arian heresy of the fourth century reveals that when he speaks of “the fidelity of the laity” the laity apparently include “holy virgins” and monks.3 Even more remarkably, a note Newman added in the appendix to the third edition of The Arians of the Fourth Century, 2 Parochial and Plain Sermons, iii. 224, 270; iv. 170-1, 174; v. 41. 3 On Consulting the Faithful in Matters of Doctrine, ed. John Coulson, London, Geoffrey Chapman, 1961, 86, 88-90.

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«The First Vatican Council was opened by Pius IX on December 8, 1869. Of the 1050 Fathers who were summoned, only 700 attended the opening. The sessions were held in Saint Peter’s Basilica by the altar of Saint Process and Saint Martinianus. North-western tower of St. Peter’s Basilica.»

when he republished it in 1871 in the collected uniform edition The more specific point is that of his works, containing part of the original article, includes a conciliar teaching cannot some amendments and additions, among which appears this be taken in isolation out of extraordinary sentence: “And again, in speaking of the laity, I context, or rather in this speak inclusively of their parish-priests (so to call them), at least case lack of context, since in many places…”4 In other words, Newman in practice means the “definition was taken out by “the faithful” not simply the laity but what Lumen Gentium of its order – it would have calls “the whole body of the faithful” (# 12), that is to say, he has come to us very differently, the same conception of the Church as the organic communion of if those preliminaries about the baptized and not primarily as consisting of clergy and laity, the Church’s power had first an understanding that leads inexorably either to clericalism or been passed, which… were to what I have called “laicism.” intended.” And Newman Before, during, and after the First Vatican Council, Newman hoped that, if the suspended adumbrated what I think we can call a mini-theology of Coun- Council were able to cils of the Church, which has much relevance for our own post- reassemble, it would “occupy conciliar time. The first point to be made is that Newman was itself in other points” which in no doubt that Councils had “ever been times of great trial”: would “have the effect of history showed that they had “generally two characteristics—a qualifying… the dogma.” great deal of violence and intrigue on the part of the actors in them, and a great resistance to their definitions on the part of portions of Christendom.”5 Then there was the effect of a definition like that of papal infallibility: although in theory it might say very little, less than what the Ultramontanes had pressed for, the reality was that, “considered in its effects both upon the Pope’s mind and that of his people, and in the power of which it puts him in practical possession, it is nothing else than shooting Niagara.” The more general point here is that Councils have unintended consequences, larger consequences than the actual conciliar texts might seem to warrant; the more specific point is that a conciliar teaching cannot be taken in isolation out of context, or rather 4 The Arians of the Fourth Century, 445. 5 LD xxvi. 281.

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«Cardinal Manning had employed an extraordinary “rhetoric” in his pastoral letter of October 1870, which gave the impression that papal infallibility was unlimited.»

in this case lack of context, since the “definition was taken out of its order—it would have come to us very differently, if those preliminaries about the Church’s power had first been passed, which… were intended.”6 And Newman hoped that, if the suspended Council were able to reassemble, it would “occupy itself in other points” which would “have the effect of qualifying… the dogma.”7 What Newman is thinking of here, of course, is a more general teaching about the Church that would have provided a context for papal infallibility. But that the Church had to wait for another Council for this to happen would not have surprised Newman: his study of the early Church showed how the Church “moved on to the perfect truth by various successive declarations, alternately in contrary directions, and thus perfecting, completing, supplying each other.” The definition of papal infallibility needed “to be completed” —“Let us be patient, let us have faith, and a new Pope, and a re-assembled Council may trim the boat.”8 That prophecy obviously came true with Pope John XXIII and the Second Vatican Council. But the general point about Councils needing “to be completed” applies no less to that later Council. And Newman means by completion not augmenting what has already been taught—which in the case of Vatican I would have meant a strengthening of the definition—but “declarations… in contrary directions.” In the case of Vatican II, it would suggest not a Vatican III, as many hoped at least until quite recently, that would “go further” than Vatican II, but rather “declarations… in contrary directions” to those of Vatican II, contrary not in the sense of contradictory but of different. The dogmas of the early Church, Newman observed, “were not struck off all at once but piecemeal—one Council did one thing, another a second—and so the whole

Given that one of the “disadvantages of a General Council, is that it throws individual units through the Church into confusion and sets them at variance,” Newman could hardly have been surprised by either the Old Catholic schism led by Döllinger and the extremism of the Ultramontane party (…)

6 LD xxv.262. 7 LD xxv. 278. 8 LD xxv. 310.

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dogma was built up.” What “looked extreme” needed to be “explained and completed.”9 Although Vatican II was not for the most part a dogmatic Council, nevertheless its teachings caused and still cause considerable dissension. After Vatican I Newman had observed that the Church had had three hundred years to absorb and digest the Council of Trent, but “now we are new born children, the birth of the Vatican Council… We do not know what exactly we hold…”10 The unhappy fact was, Newman pointed out, that Councils “generally acted as a lever, displacing and disordering portions of the existing theological system,” leading to acrimonious controversy.11 Conciliar teachings require interpretation: they hardly speak for themselves, although after Vatican II there was much talk of “implementing” its teachings as though they were self-evident. Not only theologians have to “settle the force” of a teaching, just as “lawyers explain acts of Parliament,” but “the voice… of the whole Church diffusive” has to “make itself heard,” and “Catho- (…) Nor would he have been lic instincts and ideas” eventually “assimilate and harmonize” a surprised by the analogous conciliar teaching.12 There was what Newman called the “active if reverse situation after infallibility” of popes and councils, but there was also what he Vatican II when both Lefebvre called “the passive infallibility of the whole body of the Catholic and his followers and the people” in determining the force and meaning of the teachings.13 liberals on the opposite wing Given that one of the “disadvantages of a General Council, is that united in exaggerating the it throws individual units through the Church into confusion and revolutionary scope and sets them at variance,”14 Newman could hardly have been surprised meaning of the Council. by either the Old Catholic schism led by Döllinger and the extremism of the Ultramontane party in exaggerating the scope of the definition of papal infallibility. Nor would he have been surprised by the analogous if reverse situation after Vatican II when both Lefebvre and his followers and the liberals on the opposite wing united in exaggerating the revolutionary scope and meaning of the Council. However, although Newman deplored the way Döllinger appealed to history against the Council as analogous to the Protestant appeal to Scripture against the Church, he could not deny he had been provoked by the extreme Ultramontanes like Cardinal Manning who had employed extraordinary “rhetoric” in his pastoral letter of October 1870, which gave the impression that papal infallibility was unlimited.15 Similarly, he would no doubt have sympathized with the Lefebvrists to the extent that he would have deplored the aggressive extremism of Hans Küng and “the spirit of Vatican II” party. 9 LD xxv. 330. 10 LD xxvi. 59-60. 11 LD xxvi. 76. 12 LD xxv. 71, 284. 13 LD xxvii. 338. 14 LD xxvii. 240. 15 LD xxvii. 383; xxv. 230.

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Extract of the address of Benedict XVI to the Roman Curia, during his Christmas Greeting on December 22, 2005, where he explained the difference between an “hermeneutic of rupture” and an “hermeneutic of reform” in the interpretation of the Second Vatican Council.

(…) The question arises: Why has the implementation of the Council, in large parts of the Church, thus far been so difficult? Well, it all depends on the correct interpretation of the Council or - as we would say today - on its proper hermeneutics, the correct key to its interpretation and application. The problems in its implementation arose from the fact that two contrary hermeneutics came face to face and quarrelled with each other. One caused confusion, the other, silently but more and more visibly, bore and is bearing fruit. On the one hand, there is an interpretation that I would call “a hermeneutic of discontinuity and rupture”; it has frequently availed itself of the sympathies of the mass media, and also one trend of modern theology. On the other, there is the “hermeneutic of reform”, of renewal in the continuity of the one subject-Church which the Lord has given to us. She is a subject which increases in time and develops, yet always remaining the same, the one subject of the journeying People of God. The hermeneutic of discontinuity risks ending in a split between the pre-conciliar Church and the post-conciliar Church. It asserts that the texts of the Council as such do not yet express the true spirit of the Council. It claims that they are the result of compromises in which, to reach unanimity, it was found necessary to keep and reconfirm many old things that are now pointless. However, the true spirit of the Council is not to be found in these compromises but instead in the impulses toward the new that are contained in the texts. These innovations alone were supposed to represent the true spirit of the Council, and starting from and in conformity with them, it would be possible to move ahead. Precisely because the texts would only imperfectly reflect the true spirit of the Council and its newness, it would be necessary to go courageously beyond the texts and make room for the newness in which the Council’s deepest intention would be expressed, even if it were still vague. In a word:  it would be necessary not to follow the texts of the Council but its spirit. In this way, obviously, a vast margin was left open for the question on how this spirit should subsequently be defined and room was consequently made for every whim. The nature of a Council as such is therefore basically misunderstood. In this way, it is considered as a sort of constituent that eliminates an old constitution and creates a new one. However, the Constituent Assembly needs a mandator and then confirmation by the

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mandator, in other words, the people the constitution must serve. The Fathers had no such mandate and no one had ever given them one; nor could anyone have given them one because the essential constitution of the Church comes from the Lord and was given to us so that we might attain eternal life and, starting from this perspective, be able to illuminate life in time and time itself. Through the Sacrament they have received, Bishops are stewards of the Lord’s gift. They are “stewards of the mysteries of God” (I Cor 4:1); as such, they must be found to be “faithful” and “wise” (cf. Lk 12:41-48). This requires them to administer the Lord’s gift in the right way, so that it is not left concealed in some hiding place but bears fruit, and the Lord may end by saying to the administrator: “Since you were dependable in a small matter I will put you in charge of larger affairs” (cf. Mt 25:14-30; Lk 19:11-27). These Gospel parables express the dynamic of fidelity required in the Lord’s service; and through them it becomes clear that, as in a Council, the dynamic and fidelity must converge. The hermeneutic of discontinuity is countered by the hermeneutic of reform, as it was presented first by Pope John XXIII in his Speech inaugurating the Council on 11 October 1962 and later by Pope Paul VI in his Discourse for the Council’s conclusion on 7 December 1965. Here I shall cite only John XXIII’s well-known words, which unequivocally express this hermeneutic when he says that the Council wishes “to transmit the doctrine, pure and integral, without any attenuation or distortion”. And he continues:  “Our duty is not only to guard this precious treasure, as if we were concerned only with antiquity, but to dedicate ourselves with an earnest will and without fear to that work which our era demands of us...”. It is necessary that “adherence to all the teaching of the Church in its entirety and preciseness...” be presented in “faithful and perfect conformity to the authentic doctrine, which, however, should be studied and expounded through the methods of research and through the literary forms of modern thought. The substance of the ancient doctrine of the deposit of faith is one thing, and the way in which it is presented is another...”, retaining the same meaning and message (The Documents of Vatican II,Walter M. Abbott, S.J., p. 715). (…) It is precisely in this combination of continuity and discontinuity at different levels that the very nature of true reform consists. In this process of innovation in continuity we must learn to understand more practically than before that the Church’s decisions on contingent matters - for example, certain practical forms of liberalism or a free interpretation of the Bible - should necessarily be contingent themselves, precisely because they refer to a specific reality that is changeable in itself. It was necessary to learn to recognize that in these decisions it is only the principles that express the permanent aspect, since they remain as an undercurrent, motivating decisions from within.  On the other hand, not so permanent are the practical forms that depend on the historical situation and are therefore subject to change. (…)

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«After only nine years had elapsed, Pope Paul VI issued Evangelii Nuntiandi in 1974, in which he called for a new evangelization. Apart from the decree on the foreign missions, Vatican II was virtually silent on evangelization, which of course was to become the great theme of Pope John Paul II’s pontificate.»

I want at this point to supplement these reflections on Councils and their aftermaths with a striking point that Newman makes at the beginning of his Essay on the Development of Christian Doctrine. In the first section of the first chapter, where he is speaking about the process of development in ideas, he points out that a living idea cannot be isolated “from intercourse with the world around.” But he argues that this intercourse is actually necessary “if a great idea is duly to be understood, and much more if it is to be fully exhibited.” In Newman’s terminology, Christianity is just such an “idea.” Now there is an obvious objection to the argument: namely, that the further anything moves from its origin or source, the more likely it is to lose its original character. Conceding that certainly there is always a risk of an idea being corrupted by external elements, Newman nevertheless insists that, while “It is indeed sometimes said that the stream is clearest near the spring,” this is not true of the kind of idea he is talking about. “Whatever use may fairly be made of this image, it does not apply to the history of a philosophy or belief, which on the contrary is more equable, and purer, and stronger, when its bed has become deep, and broad, and full. It necessarily rises out of an existing state of things, and for a time savours of the soil. Its vital element needs disengaging from what is foreign and temporary…”16 In other words, the philosophy or belief becomes more rather than less its true self as it changes or develops in time. And it is ironic that the famous words which appear in the conclusion to this section are regularly quoted 16 An Essay on the Development of Christian Doctrine, 39-40.

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Year of Faith 2012-2013 Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of Faith, signs the guest book during the Academic Symposium “John Henry Newman— Lover of Truth” held in the Borromini Hall of the Chiesa Nuova in April 1990, organized to commemorate the centenary of the death of John Henry Newman.

out of context to mean the opposite of what Newman intended: “In a higher world it is otherwise, but here below to live is to change, and to be perfect is to have changed often.” The point is not that Catholicism has to change or develop in order to be different, but in order to be the same, as the preceding sentence makes clear; “It changes with them [that is, external circumstances] in order to remain the same.”17 Now if Newman is correct in what he says about an “idea” such as “a philosophy or belief” becoming “more equable, and purer, and stronger” as it develops, then the teachings of Vatican II will become “more equable, and purer, and stronger” as time goes on. Those who participated in the Council no doubt thought they understood perfectly well the meaning of its teachings. Both Küng and Lefebvre had no doubt in their minds about how the Council was to be understood (as a rupture with Tradition), and, ironically, like Döllinger and Manning, were in close agreement about its significance. In retrospect, we can see much better the very limited scope of the definition of papal infallibility and appreciate the accuracy of Newman’s interpretation. But for both Döllinger and Manning the definition signified far more than Catholic theology has since understood it to mean—an understanding which received the Church’s formal endorsement at Vatican II. In the case of the latter Council, it similarly suited both Küng and Lefebvre to exaggerate the revolutionary nature of the Council, even though the so-called revolution aroused in them very different feelings. If it is appropriate to call Newman 17 An Essay on the Development of Christian Doctrine, 40.

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“the father of Vatican II,” then it is not unreasonable to apply the mini-theology of Councils which he adumbrated at the time of Vatican I, together with his theology of development, to the question of the reception and interpretation of Vatican II, as well as to likely future developments. If we may take Newman as our guide, then, we may legitimately use that passage in the Essay on Development to argue that those who participated in or lived through the Second Vatican Council are less likely to understand the true meaning and significance of the Council’s teachings than posterity. The “idea” of Vatican II will, if Newman is correct, grow “more equable, and purer, and stronger” as the “stream” moves away from the “spring” and “its bed has become deep, and broad, and full.” Far from taking place The “idea” of Vatican II in a historical void, the Second Vatican Council met at a time of will, if Newman is correct, enormous upheaval in Western society, a time of optimistic eugrow “more equable, and phoria but also a time of great moral and spiritual devastation. It purer, and stronger” as took place in a period of revolution and inevitably “savoured” of the “stream” moves away the “soil” of the 1960s, of, to use Newman’s words, the “existing from the “spring” and “its state of things” of that decade. Consequently, its “vital element bed has become deep, and needs disengaging from what is foreign and temporary.” After broad, and full”. Far from Vatican I Newman constantly urged worried correspondents, taking place in a historical “our duty is patience…” A year after that Council he wrote in void, the Second Vatican a private letter: “Our wisdom is to… pray that He, who before Council met at a time of now has completed a fifth Council by a second, may do so now.”18 enormous upheaval in Newman, of course, was praying not for another Council that Western society, a time of would extend and strengthen the definition of papal infallibioptimistic euphoria but also lity as the Ultramontanes would doubtless have liked, but for a time of great moral and a Council that would modify the definition by setting it in the spiritual devastation. (…) larger perspective of a fuller teaching on the Church. In our time there has been no Vatican III that would have extended and strengthened the equivalent conciliar texts as the liberal wing of the Church would have liked, but rather the popes from Paul VI to Benedict XVI have endeavoured to set the teachings of the Council in the wider perspective of the whole history and tradition of the Church, so that the Council can be understood in continuity rather than rupture with the past. This brings us to the second kind of development that Newman speaks of in his mini-theology of Councils. For it is not only a question of the meaning and significance of the “idea” of Vatican II becoming more luminous as it is seen both in the light of the past and in the developing life of the Church, but there is also the consideration that Councils open up further developments because of what they don’t say or stress. In the case of Vatican I, Newman saw that the isolated teaching on the papacy and the lack of a general teaching on the Church must open up the kind of development that would reach fruition nearly a century later in Lumen Gentium. The priorities similarly had 18 LD xxv. 278.

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Year of Faith 2012-2013 to change after Vatican II, both because of unbalanced exaggerations of its teachings and because of the emergence of new problems. This change in fact began to happen very soon after the Council. After only nine years had elapsed, Pope Paul VI issued Evangelii Nuntiandi in 1974, in which he called for a new evangelization. Apart from the decree on the foreign missions, Vatican II was virtually silent on evangelization, which of course was to become the great theme of Pope John Paul II’s pontificate. These two kinds of development have come together in a wholly unexpected post-Vatican II phenomenon, which is vitally connected with the new evangelization, and which exemplifies both the two kinds of Newmanian development that I have been speaking of. The rise of the new ecclesial communities and movements, some of which in fact pre-date the Council, on the one hand can be said to represent a response to what the Council failed or omitted to speak about, and on the other hand to make much clearer and more luminous the first two chapters of Lumen Gentium, which I have argued must be the key text of the Council, by realizing in the concrete their real meaning and significance. For the whole point, one might say, about these communities and movements is precisely that they are not lay communities and movements, although they have been often called such, but ecclesial communities and movements. They are ecclesial and not lay because they consist not only of lay members but also of clergy, bishops, and religious or consecrated lay members. For what is so significant is that they bring together the baptised, whatever their particular status in the Church, into an organic communion. It was this organic communion that Newman

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portrayed in the Church of the fourth century in his article “On Consulting the Faithful in Matters of Doctrine.” And it is this same organic communion of the baptised that is the subject of the first two chapters of Lumen Gentium, which absolutely avoid speaking of the Church in the usual clerical/lay terms and where the terms do not even occur, the “ministerial or hierarchical priesthood” being simply referred to in connection with the sacrament of holy orders when the seven sacraments which build up the “common priesthood of the faithful” are listed (# 10-11). This movement of the Spirit has been a novel and often unpopular phenomenon in a Church that had grown increasingly clericalised until the Second Vatican Council’s emphasis on the laity provoked a sharp reaction in favour of a laicised Church. However, the phenomenon was entirely in (…) It took place in a continuity not disruption with the Church’s tradition insofar as it period of revolution and was simply another manifestation of the Church’s charismatic as inevitably “savoured” of opposed to hierarchical dimension. This charismatic dimension the “soil” of the 1960s, of, is in fact referred to three times in the first two chapters of Lumen to use Newman’s words, the Gentium. And this rediscovery of the charismatic dimension “existing state of things” of as one of the Church’s “constitutive elements” Pope John Paul that decade. Consequently, II described as one of the most important achievements of the its “vital element needs Council.19 disengaging from what is Lumen Gentium employed the new theological term “charism,” foreign and temporary.” After a transliteration of the New Testament Greek word charisma Vatican I Newman constantly in place of the Thomist phrase gratia gratis data (“grace freely urged worried correspondents, given”). Naturally enough, then, Newman does not use the “our duty is patience…” word. However, the idea of special graces given to individuals for the benefit of the Church was very much part of Newman’s thinking both as an Anglican and as a Catholic. The Anglican Newman well understood the immense significance of the monastic charism when the Church was no longer persecuted but had become the state religion and was in danger of becoming too much of this world. The “one great purpose answered” by monasticism, he wrote, “was the maintenance of the Truth in times and places in which great masses of Catholics had let it slip from them.” At a time when Christians were in danger of becoming “secular,” monasteries became “the refuge of piety and holiness.” Indeed, Newman adds, “such provisions, in one shape or other, will always be attempted by the more serious and anxious part of the community, whenever Christianity is generally professed.” In other words, the charismatic dimension of the Church is essential for Christians wishing to practise their faith in a more committed and devout way. Where no spiritual outlet exists for more serious Christians, they will be liable to “run into separatism,” “by way of searching for something divine and transcendental,” as in Protestant countries “where 19 Movements in the Church: Proceedings of the World Congress of the Ecclesial Movements, Rome, 27-29 May 1998, Vatican City, Pontificium Consilium pro Laicis, 1999, 221.

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monastic orders are unknown.” Like Lumen Gentium, Newman is insistent that the charisms need the hierarchy to regulate them: “enthusiasm is sobered and refined by being submitted to the discipline of the Church, instead of being allowed to run wild externally to it.”20 Newman was well aware the charisms are not given simply for the benefit of the recipient, but are intended for the whole Church. They therefore are the Holy Spirit’s answer to the particular needs of the Church at the time. And so, he wrote as a Catholic, while “St. Benedict had come as if to preserve a principle of civilization, and a refuge for learning, at a time when the old framework of society was falling, and new political creations were taking their place… when the young intellect within them began to stir, and a change of another kind discovered itself, then appeared St. Francis and St. Dominic…” Finally, Newman concludes, “in the last era of ecclesiastical revolution” the charism of St. Ignatius Loyola was given to the Church to The popes from Paul VI meet new needs: “The hermitage, the cloister… and the friar to Benedict XVI have were suited to other states of society; with the Jesuits, as well endeavoured to set the as with the religious Communities, which are their juniors,” the teachings of the Council in “chief objects of attention” were new kinds of apostolate, such the wider perspective of the as teaching and the missions.21 whole history and tradition After his conversion, Newman became an Oratorian. New- of the Church, so that the man thought that the Oratorian charism was important in the Council can be understood in Counter-Reformation for the reform of the diocesan clergy. continuity rather than rupture Nevertheless, he also saw Oratorians as being in some respects with the past. like the early monks, who also did not take vows. For he thought the charism of St. Philip Neri was boldly to go back to primitive Christianity in its “plainness and simplicity,” not least in which, extraordinarily for the time, laymen participated.22 In a sermon of 1850, “The Mission of St. Philip,” he called Saints Benedict, Dominic, and Ignatius “the three venerable Patriarchs, whose Orders divide between them the extent of Christian history.” Certainly Philip was a minor charismatic figure compared with these giants, but nevertheless Newman points out that he “came under the teaching of all three successively.” Although he did not have the term “charism” in his theological vocabulary and although he lived at a time when the hierarchical dimension of the Church was exaggerated, Newman never underestimated the significance of the charismatic dimension. For these “masters in the spiritual Israel” had, “in an especial way,… had committed to them the office of a public ministry in the affairs of the Church one after another, and… are, in some sense, her nursing fathers.”23 In 1855 Newman gave a lecture entitled “The Three Patriarchs of Christian History, St. Benedict, St. Dominic, and St. Ignatius,” of which some notes 20 21 22 23

Historical Sketches ii. 103, 164-5. Ibid, 398-9. Newman the Oratorian, ed. Placid Murray, OSB (Dublin: Gill and Macmillan, 1969), 186, 188, 203. Sermons Preached on Various Occasions, 220-1.

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«After his conversion, Newman became an Oratorian. Newman thought that the Oratorian charism was important in the Counter-Reformation for the reform of the diocesan clergy. Nevertheless, he also saw Oratorians as being in some respects like the early monks, who also did not take vows. For he thought the charism of St. Philip Neri was boldly to go back to primitive Christianity in its “plainness and simplicity,” not least in which, extraordinarily for the time, laymen participated.» St. Philip Neri.

survive.24 He had had it in mind, he wrote fifteen years later, to write a book on the “Historical contrast of Benedictines, Dominicans, and Jesuits, which I suppose I shall never finish.” In the end, he only managed to write the part on the Benedictines.25 It was a source of regret to him, he explained later, but, after what he had written on the Benedictines was criticized by a Benedictine abbot, he was nervous about trying to write about Dominicans, Franciscans, and Jesuits. One can only regret that Newman was never able to complete this book on these three great charismatic movements.

24 LD xvi.378. 25 LD xxv.228.

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Year of Faith 2012-2013

Finally, it is noteworthy that Newman actually anticipated the twentiethcentury ecclesial movements and communities, and not only through his ecclesiology of organic communion, but also in practice. For he himself led a movement in his own time, the Oxford or Tractarian Movement, which, far from being a clerical association as some of its initiators had wanted, consisted of both clergy and laity, some of its most prominent members being lay people. Later, at the time of the restoration of the Catholic hierarchy in 1850, Newman hoped that a similar kind of movement might arise to support the Catholic cause, but the clerical nature of nineteenth-century Catholicism prevented this. Furthermore, Newman’s understanding of the original nature of Philip Neri’s Oratory shows how like a modern ecclesial comIn the case of Vatican I, munity it had been to begin with. It had begun as an entirely lay Newman saw that the isolated community not as a priestly order or congregation. From this teaching on the papacy and original community emerged a smaller community of priests the lack of a general teaching but still closely linked to the larger lay community. Together, on the Church must open up the congregation of priests and the lay community constituted the kind of development that the Oratory as one organic community. would reach fruition nearly The importance, then, that Newman attributed to the charismatic a century later in Lumen dimension of the Church is fully in accordance with the teaching Gentium. The priorities of Lumen Gentium. In the sixteenth century the importance of the similarly had to change after great charismatic figures of the Counter-Reformation can hardly Vatican II, both because of be exaggerated. Without St. Ignatius Loyola and the Society of unbalanced exaggerations Jesus in particular it is hard to see how the reforms of the Council of its teachings and because of Trent could have been implemented. Can we not similarly say of the emergence of new that the true realization of the teachings of Vatican II, that is to problems. say, a realization in continuity with rather than rupture with the Church’s tradition, is inseparable from the charisms that the Holy Spirit gave to the Church in the latter half of the twentieth century? Certainly, the ecclesial movements and communities, which Pope Benedict XVI has called the fifth great movement of the Spirit in the history of the Church,26 seem to manifest the two kinds of development that, according to Newman, would be the characteristic results of a Council.

26 Movements in the Church, 23, 51.

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«Heir to John XXIII, Paul VI carried out the Council. Day after day he has sought to apply it. The Church, once more, renews itself. Upon Pentecost’s vivifying breath, the tree of the Cross always grows green again and promises new fruits,» said de Lubac fifteen years after the Pontificate of Pope Montini. Portrait by Ernst Gunter Hansing

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50 years after the election of Paul VI BY HENRI DE LUBAC

On June 21, 1978, the great conciliar theologian, Jesuit priest, and later Cardinal of the Church, Henri de Lubac, wrote this article for L’Osservatore Romano to commemorate 15 years of the pontificate of Paul VI, who would die soon after. We reproduce this document on the 50th anniversary (June 21, 2013) of the election of Giovanni Battista Montini as the 262nd successor of Peter.


ne morning, as I come out of the dense fog I am immersed in as a result of a double surgical operation, I see a fuzzy shadow leaning on my hospital bed, and I hear these two words: “Montini... Paul VI...” Suddenly, the long nightmare dissipates. I regain contact with the real world. It is the light’s return; life regenerates in me. Coincidence? Yes, but much more: in that moment a great The storm roars. Those hope invades me. It won’t be frustrated. who accuse the Council Heir to John XXIII, Paul VI carried out the Council. Day of unleashing it do not after day he has sought to apply it. The Church, once more, know what they’re saying. renews itself. Upon Pentecost’s vivifying breath, the tree of It didn’t take a prophet the Cross always grows green again and promises new fruits. to discern the storm’s Yet, at the same time, once more, the storm roars. Those symptoms from long ago. who accuse the Council of unleashing it do not know what However, the shock would they’re saying. It didn’t take a prophet to discern the storm’s have been less violent had there not been a symptoms from long ago. However, the shock would have more immediate cause, of been less violent had there not been a more immediate cauwhich it is now too soon se, of which it is now too soon to describe, but which those to describe. historians who carefully collect the documents shall not find difficult to elucidate. The Church invited her children to a great collective effort, in a climate of freedom. Not all have been able to understand this, or simply have not taken an interest in doing so. In many cases—it’s a fact, even if daring to say it isn’t popular—the Council has been betrayed. Not only due to very natural inclination, but to the activity of what I shall call a parallel council, no less an anti-Council—the work of a declared opposition and as such even more effective... It happens with the Council as with the Gospel: I guess some, there

HUMANITAS Nº 5 pp. 50 - 53

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are cases, try not to re-read it, so as not to blush too much because of what they preach in its name. Fifteen years ago, however, Pope Paul took control of the helm. Without knowing him, I knew enough about him to be sure that the helm was in good hands. With methodical and tenacious firmness, which constantly belies a similarly tenacious legend, he commands the bark. Amongst all the things that his detractors decry, one should only keep one feature in mind: the pain that sometimes overwhelms him and that he cannot hide, without ever breaking—not even attenuating— his impulse. Indeed, we should rather lament if this note of humanity was lacking in him, which, amongst many things, is a feature that assimilates him to Jesus. What makes us love him more is precisely the outraging ignorance about him, not so much by the “world” —and not, to be sure, by all Christians, Catholic or not—, but by those from The Church invited whom he has a right to expect support. In the past (only in the past?) one spoke of “court theoloher children to a great collective effort, in a gians,” a species of intellectuals that have never been absent climate of freedom. Not around all kinds of princes. If that were the case today, all have been able to whoever has his eyes open knows he shouldn’t try to find understand this, or simply them around the see of St Peter. A threefold paradoxical situation! Precisely at the time have not taken an interest in doing so. In many when, after disposing itself of the final remains that witnescases—it’s a fact, even sed to an embarrassing but now concluded past, the Papacy if daring to say it isn’t presents itself, in the wake of the Council, as leading the popular—the Council has evangelical renewal and multiplying the gestures which are been betrayed. (…) apt to stimulate it, the bitter voices of objection are raised from the most opposite horizons to later give place to disdainful separation. On the other hand, the closer some of the media get to the Church, which are foreign to her or ill-prepared to understand her (because of traditional prejudices), the more some of her children, unfaithful to their vocation, make fun of her in the person of her first pastor. This is not about demanding initiatives or disclosing preferences—whose timeliness each person, according to his or her competence and post, has a right to estimate—, but about the very ground of the Catholic faith, its morals and discipline, of which it is the duty of the body of Bishops united with the Pope to maintain. Finally, the third paradox: the objections against the Papacy increase within Catholicism, while, among Christians of other confessions, the awareness of an urgent need to be united awakens or deepens. I shall never forget what one Christian, who exercises a prominent function in his Church, confessed to me after finishing a long meeting: “It is necessary,” he told me, “to form a

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unity. Despite the obstacles still standing, many signs show that the times are ripe. Now, it is plain that the unity cannot be formed but around the bishop of Rome; different planning should guarantee that the traditions that developed in different directions since the time of the schism be respected, but this is not unrealisable. Yet —–and his voice then acquired a tone of troubled sadness—we see that the Pope is being attacked within the very Catholic Church. Herein lies the great obstacle, which involves the risk of long delaying unity.” My interlocutor was not mistaken about this. If the Pope is objected to in this way, it is actually often because of what is the most unobjectionable in him, if I may so speak. The main aim of the attack is, through it, the principle of the papacy, the very function of Peter. Thus it receives the highest homage. Each one has a sentiment or a presentiment: as long as that function is assured, whatever be the path of history, the (…) Not only due to very light of Christian revelation remains intact; and what with natural inclination, but to all legitimacy is called, in a unique sense, Christian revela- the activity of what I shall tion, preserves its endless strength. Here is the rock against call a parallel council, which break the efforts of perversion, revolution, or “radical no less an anti-Council— change;” which, on the other hand, in murky times may find the work of a declared opposition and as such even so many unaware accomplices. At the bottom of the tomb of Pope Adrian VI, in Santa more effective... It happens Maria dell’Anima, in the center of the old papal Rome, one with the Council as with the can read an epitaph of melancholic beauty, before which I Gospel: I guess some, there are cases, try not to re-read have meditated more than once. It evokes the situation in it, so as not to blush too which the Church found itself at the beginning of the XVI much because of what they century and what its renewal could have been under this preach in its name. Pope, who disappeared too early, if so many countering forces had not paralysed it. The Lord does not spare testing Paul VI, as with many others: He has tested him without measure. In return, he has been given more time than Pope Adrian (and we hope more still will be given to him) to make progress, against all odds, in realizing the programme announced already in the encyclical “Ecclesiam suam,” and in the inaugural address in the last session of the Council. Someday, when a serious historian attempts to show what the real life of the Church was during these 15 years, then, when this vain unrest is reduced to dust, it will be surely seen that, within full Christian fidelity, under the impulse of Paul VI, everything was being prepared so that the saving activity of Christ’s Church may go on in the midst of a deeply transformed world.

Translated by Rafael Simian

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«In classical Greece, the adventure of the paideia, i.e., the education of the generations, was carried out precisely by recounting mythological tales and by the tragedies of the theater. With these as their instruments, the Greeks succeeded in portraying a whole universe of meaning and in showing the relationship between a concrete moment and a person’s global destiny.» Ulyses and Polyphemus, Sparta, 560-550 BC.

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The Drama of Education in the Communion of the Family BY JOSÉ NORIEGA

The drama of interpreting meaning Once an actor takes the stage, he is forced to recite his lines. The audience is watching him, and though our leading man may understand more or less the character he represents and may even take a last glance at the script, once the curtain goes up it is time for him to play his role. Calderón de la Barca understood human existence precisely from the standpoint of this dramatic dimension: man is forced to act, even though he still does not understand well the meaning of what he does, or the one for whom he does it. In the Great Theatre of the World the spectator is the Lord God himself, who sees the way in which each character represents a virtue or vice without yet understanding exactly what he is doing. Similarly, each man also finds himself on the stage of life having to interpret a character, i.e., himself, about whom he still does not understand many things. The greatest challenge, however, is that the one on stage has no script. In the great theatre of life, where we find such different characters in such varying circumstances, there is no script, and it seems that everything has to be made up. Nothing is written down, and so everything has yet to be written. Freedom has neither decided nor given its response, and one continually finds oneself standing before a new beginning.1 What shall he say, then? The actor, i.e. each man, will have to play his own role by interacting with his stage companions in the drama of the world. Every man is an actor who interprets a drama, but he is also the drama’s author, becoming in a certain way his own father, creating himself anew as he wills by his own free decisions.2 HUMANITAS Nº 5 pp. 54 - 71


1 Cf. S. Kampowski, Arendt, Augustine, and the New Beginning: The Action Theory and Moral Thought of Hannah Arendt, Eerdmans, Grand Rapids 2008. 2 Cf. Gregory of Nyssa, De vita Moysis, II, 2-3: PG 44, 327-328; cited from Veritatis splendor, 71.

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«We have modern man, who has no idea who man is, in what his perfection consists, and who reduces everything to a radical choice of his own will, whose sole justification is tied to his experience. We find ourselves standing before a man fragmented in a thousand pieces; a thousand different affective moments incapable of offering any sort of intrinsic unity.»

3 Cf. L. Melina – J. Noriega – J.J. Perez Soba, Camminare alla luce dell’amore. I fondamenti della morale Cristiana, Cantagalli, Siena 2008, I.1.3. 4 Cf. G. Abbà, Felicità, vita buona e virtú, Las, Rome 1991.

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Now, if life is ours to fashion, and if neither script nor even a sketch is provided for us pointing out the way to proceed, how are we to accomplish anything beautiful or great in life? Does not affirming the absence of a script imply that everything is merely a grand enigma? And does not this enigma of life give rise to the specter of a great failure? If it is true that God has not written a script for any man’s life, it is likewise true that he has not left any man alone on the stage, at the mercy of life’s waves which may crash against the shore more or less vehemently in any given situation.

The meaning of life and of happiness The phrase the meaning of life is meant to bring man’s destiny into focus. When we use the expression “the meaning of life,” what we want to consider is what makes life true and good.3 We are not dealing here with just any truth, but with that specific truth about one’s life that makes it full and complete. Nor are we referring to a fullness that results from a chance success of greater or lesser importance, as often happens in the world of business. The river of life can never be filled with this sort of success, for while such success may be manifold, it is never enough to constitute a successful life taken as a whole.4 Moreover, it should not be forgotten that one might experience a unique fullness even amid failure, as did the Lord himself in his great failure on the Cross. Man, in fact, cannot attain life’s ultimate fullness on his own, for it is offered to him as a gift. Long ago, Aristotle affirmed that happiness was the greatest gift the gods could grant to men. Questioning the meaning of life therefore involves asking oneself what makes life full and happy, beyond the successes or failures that may occur, and which often do occur without any intervention on our part. Questioning what makes life full and happy, in turn, involves asking oneself what fills one’s actions and activities.5 Happiness is not the simple consequence of acting in order to satisfy one’s expectations and desires, but rather the very fullness that acting itself entails. In his book Anarchy, State and Utopia (published in the 1960’s), Robert Nozik showed the absurdity of this way of thinking, by appealing to the example of the experience machine.6 He pinpointed the way to show that happiness is something more than satisfaction by imagining a machine capable of satisfying every desire: anyone could plug in, but once you were plugged in, you could not get unplugged. Who would want to plug into this sort of machine? And would not the fact of wanting to plug into this sort of apparatus be immoral? Why? Well, precisely because


5 Cf. G. Abbà, Quale impostazione per la filosofia morale?, Las, Rome 1996. 6 Cf. R. Nozik, Anarchy, State and Utopia, Basil Blackwell, Oxford 1968.

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whoever plugs in would lose his sense of reality. What we desire, then, is not the mere satisfaction of our desires, but rather the reality of a life full of love, of relationships and of influence on others. What is it, then, that makes life full? Whence does the meaning that explains the telos, the perfection of a destiny, arise? The understanding of the telos of each man’s destiny cannot be gained simply through a study of nature. It is true that man’s rational nature points to a telos common to all men, inasmuch as there would be no human perfection unless it included understanding and freedom, dimensions specific to the human animal. It is only in knowledge and freedom that man may become the protagonist of his own destiny. But this is still too generic, and every person is unique and unrepeatable. What appears to be good for all may not appear so to the individual. What one society proposes as good and noble may not be so for another. And what parents propose as good to their children may not be seen as good by them. The meaning of life, i.e., what fills it with life and goodness, has to be discovered by each man. And this can only happen if a person accepts that he must interpret everything that happens to him. For the meaning of life is unveiled precisely in the events that form it.

Meaning and event

7 W. Shakespeare, The Complete Works, “Macbeth”, Act I, Scene III: 1102.

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As Macbeth makes his way with Banquo on their journey to Forres, he is startled by three witches who greet him with a most surprising message: “All hail, Macbeth, that shalt be king hereafter!”7 Macbeth, together with his friend, wonders about the meaning of this prophecy. However, it is only when he arrives home and speaks with his wife that he understands it and recognizes himself in the message. His wife, who is seized by ambition, will eventually convince Macbeth to act against the king in order that the prophecy might be fulfilled. And here is Macbeth’s mistake: rather than waiting for destiny progressively to unfold, he forces reality to fit the divination.

«Alasdair MacIntyre has shown how modern reflection has led to an emotivist conception of man that reduces the person to the “emotivist self.” Who is this man? He is an individual who is incapable of providing any reasons for his conduct, since he has lost any sense of the meaning of the fullness and completion of the human person and of his actions.»

Shakespeare did not believe in witches, but his recourse to this image offers him the necessary literary device for opening his protagonist’s horizon. The witches indicate the world of magic, or something beyond rational control. There is something magical about understanding destiny, something that goes beyond reason, since it allows one to understand life as a whole. Thus, the great English writer places his character before a destiny and observes his reactions: this explains the astonishment when, by the instigation of the wickedness of his wife, Macbeth gives way to wild ambition and everything begins to depend on his ideas and abilities. He willed that his destiny be solely the work of his own hands, of his own labor. This, however, reduces destiny to human measure. It is clear from this experiment that he to whom destiny is announced, if he forces it, sets himself on an evil path and becomes a despot king.8 Does such an explanation end up being too distant from the modern world of technology and science? Witches are not an object of belief today either, but we do have to admit that, as in the age of Macbeth, we sometimes experience moments when the future opens up before us and presents


8 Cf. A. Ruiz Retegui, “La esperanza y la afirmación del present,” in J. M. Casciaro et al (Ed.), Esperanza del hombre y revelación biblica. XIV International Theological Syposium at the University of Navarre, Eunsa, Pamplona 1996 233-252.

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9 Cf. J. Noriega, “La scintilla del sentimento e la totalità dell’amore”, in L. Melina – C. A. Anderson, La via dell’amore. Riflessioni sulla enciclica Deus Caritas Est, Rai-Eri-Istituto Giovanni Paolo II, Rome 2006. 10 After Virtue, Duckworth, London 1981.

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itself as something fascinating and attractive. What are these moments? They are the rich experiences that involve the affections. These moments are full of promise, but their meaning and fulfillment are not immediately apparent.9 These moments are ones of truly loving emotion, when a new fullness opens up before us that cannot be attained on our own, but rather only in the joyous company which is given to us, and which allows us to live in harmony. They also occur at those times when fear oppresses man and brings him to experience the magnitude of his destiny and the depth of his own frailty. And they include the occasions when we come to understand the gift that someone makes to the deepest part of man by his presence, creating intimacy and filling the heart with joy; or even the moments when anger takes hold of the heart, when we see the evil of someone who is threatening those whom we love. Such love, such fear, such joy and such anger, together with so many other affections – hope or desperation, desire or distress – are not mere states of mind, emotions without precise intentionality, or sentiments devoid of meaning. Alasdair MacIntyre10 has shown how modern reflection has led to an emotivist conception of man that reduces the person to the “emotivist self.” Who is this man? He is an individual who is incapable of providing any reasons for his conduct, since he has lost any sense of the meaning of the fullness and completion of the human person and of his actions. The Scottish philosopher offers a fitting analogy, which compares modern man to a castaway who finds himself shipwrecked on a deserted island. He sees pieces of the vessel that transported him make landfall on his island, but what good are these pieces without the idea of the ship, i.e. if he has never seen the ship as a whole? Any attempt to reconstruct the vessel would be impossible under such circumstances. Here, then, we have modern man, who has no idea who man is, in what his perfection consists, and who reduces everything to a radical choice of his own will, whose sole justification is tied to his experience. We find ourselves

«We may, of course, distinguish “true” sentiments from those which are “false,” and we may certainly recognize that not everything that we feel inside stands on the same plane of existence, and that not everything is true in the same way. We know that within us there are varying degrees of reality, just as outside of us there are “reflections,” “phantasms,” and “things.” Along with true love there is also a false or illusory love, as the great philosopher Maurice Merleau-Ponty stated.»

standing before a man fragmented in a thousand pieces; i.e., a thousand different affective moments incapable of offering any sort of intrinsic unity. But is this truly all that feelings are: fragmented moments of life, devoid of any meaning? They are, in fact, the exact opposite. For something decisive about man is revealed in the affections, which are experienced in the feelings and emotions. They, like the witches of the Shakespearean tragedy, have a decisive hermeneutic value in that they help man to understand himself, the meaning of his life, and what a true and good life really is, a life that is worthy of being sought; or on the contrary, what ruins life and makes it lose momentum. The affections are like “upheavals of thought,” to draw upon the beautiful image of the well-known American philosopher Martha Nussbaum.11 They permit us to go beyond ordinary everyday life and to look out upon the horizon. The destiny of every man is disclosed in his affections. Stating this, however, implies the need to know how to interpret these affections.12 We may, of course, distinguish “true” sentiments from those which are “false,” and we


11 Cf. M.C. Nussbaum, Upheavals of Thought: The Intelligence of the Emotions, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge 2001.

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may certainly recognize that not everything that we feel inside stands on the same plane of existence, and that not everything is true in the same way. We know that within us there are varying degrees of reality, just as outside of us there are “reflections,” “phantasms,” and “things.” Along with true love there is also a false or illusory love, as the great philosopher Maurice Merleau-Ponty stated.13 Interpreting the affections therefore means searching for the truth they conceal, which is not merely the existence of the feeling itself. The truth of affection is not like sincerity; it does not answer the equation: I feel, therefore it is. The spontaneity with which the affections arise may conceal their intentional significance and enclose man within his own emotional intensity. The truth of feelings is revealed when the feeling is placed in relation to the whole of life.14 Interpretation therefore entails looking for the teleology of feeling: seeing where it leads, and how it makes the fullness of life more or less possible. In order to interpret them rightly, we must first understand that feelings have a teleology, that they are not meant to end in their own inner intensity. And to understand this, a youngster first has to know how to identify this dimension in others.

Stories and meaning

12 Cf. D. von Hildebrand, The Heart: an analysis of human and divine affectivity, St. Augustine’s Press, South Bend 2012. 13 M. Merleau-Ponty, Fenomenologia della percezione, Il Saggiatore, Milano 1965, 487. 14 Cf. V. Soloviev, Il Significato dell’amore e altri scritti, La Casa di Matriona, Milan 1983.

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Feelings arise as the fruit of events that happen in life. Man experiences love because a woman strikes him by her personality and beauty; he experiences sadness when the one he loves slips out of his hands; and he experiences anger when someone threatens him. These are events that have an impact on his subjectivity: reality strikes him and transforms him. But what exactly is this reality? Principally, it is one that is woven out of interpersonal relationships. It is others who affect man and introduce changes in him, knitting together his still vulnerable and delicate inner life.15 Affections, then, are something that happen within man

but without him being able to decide on their being there: affections often arise without him being able to plan for them, avoid them or produce them. In this sense, they have something in common with magic, for they cannot simply be deduced by, or reduced to, reason. Their magic resides in their unpredictability. Yet when they do occur, then it is that a man is able to understand their reasonableness, for they have an inherent logos that goes well beyond their being experienced. At first a person understands this mechanism, not by experiencing it firsthand, but by looking at the stories of others. In the stories we hear as children, we begin to learn that the affections do not end once they are felt, since they generate situations that continue to play out in the story. The child does not yet have a sense of the duration of time or of the continuity of the person: for him everything seems to be spent in the intensity of what he feels; he is continually experiencing new and different things that have but one point of continuity: himself. The intensity with which fear or jealousy, love, hatred or anger present themselves seems to fill and determine the entire space, requiring his complete and immediate adherence. The child is accustomed to hearing stories from his parents about animals, ancient heroes, or family and friends with whom he may identify. Though still young, he is able to understand how the fear that the soldier felt, and which led him to betray his nation, caused a true disaster for so many; or how Ulysses’ daring to push the limits and go beyond the Pillars of Hercules led to the sinking of his ship and to the death of all his companions. Or again, how Dante’s trust in his beloved moved him to allow himself to be guided along the most beautiful adventure toward heaven ever told, or how the courage of the lion king who, having conquered his fear and his desire to flee, brought peace to his land. These are stories that, by recounting the lives of others, manifestly show that the affections do not end in themselves, in that particular moment of anger or fear or love;


15 Cf. J.J.Pérez Soba, “Risvegliare un senso nell’esperienza,” in J.J. Pérez – O. Gotia, Il cammino della vita: l’educazione, una sfida per la morale, LUP, Rome 2007, 115-137.

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16 Cf. T. Dixon, From Passions to Emotions. The Creation of a Secular Psychological Category, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge 2003.

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but rather, that they lead to something that generates a new situation. And it is that something which may determine the preciousness of the affections, or the lack thereof, according to the circumstances. The affections therefore have an intrinsic rationality, which points not only to mere satisfaction, but also to a fullness of the individual with respect to other persons. In dealing with fear, sadness, love, bravery, anger, the need for a response arises that opens to a life more or less true, not only for the individual but also for all those around him. This is how the affections cause a common good to emerge in which each of the different attractions acquires meaning. One of the great problems of modern storytelling is that, rather than allowing us to glimpse the whole, it only shows us a part, albeit with great intensity. In other words, today all the effort is focused on producing empathy in the spectator, in making him experience what the protagonist experiences, but without any reference to the meaning of this feeling,16 i.e. without reference to what makes the fullness of life more or less possible. However, reducing affections to feelings involves a great impoverishment, precisely because the affections do not appear clearly to reason: they remain largely hidden. With feeling, the important thing is what is experienced; it is the possibility of acting on the basis of what one experiences, unaware of the future and of what the balance in human relationships will be, which matters most. Today the stories presented by the mass media only show a fragment of the story. To a great degree, they involve the viewer affectively, but they obfuscate the possibility of his opening himself to the totality of what the affection contains. Our purpose here is not to advocate uplifting stories that show us by their happy ending how to resolve difficult situations. What we are attempting to show is that, in order to interpret the affections rightly, we need to allow them to reveal their inherent intentionality rather than hiding the drama they bear. The problem is not that the media portrays violence and eroticism, but rather that they do so

«Macbeth gives way to wild ambition and everything begins to depend on his ideas and abilities. He willed that his destiny be solely the work of his own hands, of his own labor. This, however, reduces destiny to human measure. It is clear from this experiment that he to whom destiny is announced, if he forces it, sets himself on an evil path and becomes a despot king.»

in a way that does not allow a person to understand their link, or lack thereof, to man’s destiny. It is only by making this horizon his own that a man will be able to understand whether an affection fragments his life, or instead provides him with a new principle of integration, as he pursues the beautiful thing that has been promised to him in the event of the encounter. Stories, on the other hand, help us to see the affections in context, whether fear, love, hatred envy, jealously, daring, etc., by allowing the whole story to unfold, and by locating the origin of the affection in behavior that succeeds, more or less, in bringing fullness to life. Indeed, this fullness is already present at source of the affection and determines its own truth as well as the identity of the subject.17 In classical Greece, the adventure of the paideia, i.e., the education of the generations, was carried out precisely by recounting mythological tales and by the tragedies of the theater.18 With these as their instruments, the Greeks succeeded in portraying a whole universe of meaning and in


17 Cf. P. Ricoeur, Soi même comme un autre, Seuil, Paris 1990, 167198.

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showing the relationship between a concrete moment and a person’s global destiny. The outcome of Shakespearean theatre is also to be understood in this light. Certainly these dramas have the particular power or bringing a passion to life on stage, but beyond this their great merit lies in their power to reveal the passion’s anthropological value, i.e. its capacity to render life truly full. Revenge is not what guides the whole of Hamlet. Rather, it is Hamlet’s dilemma over the meaning of a life in which he finds himself having to accept that his own father was murdered by his uncle, in connivance with his own mother, and that now, the very same uncle married her. The drama of revenge is the very need for justice. Hamlet will only be able live a full life by enacting justice; otherwise, his life is ruined and gone mad. His “to be or not to be” refers to an essential question of life, to what makes life human: one cannot live in the kind of relationship in which Hamlet finds himself. The stories a person hears throughout his life allow him, then, to get a first, external glimpse into the meaning of the great passions of life. They also provide him with an opportunity to identify himself to a greater or lesser degree with their heroes and characters. The first step is for him to understand that the affections do not end in themselves, and that because of this, he will need to know how to interpret them by distancing himself from the affective intensity which accompanies them.

Praxis and Meaning The second step is to understand that the affection one experiences is a real provocation and challenge to one’s freedom. Indeed, every man is Ulysses or Laocoön, Antigone or Macbeth, Romeo or Don Quixote. Every man is called to respond to the desire for adventure, to the anger, to the

18 Cf. W. Jaeger, Paideia. La formazione dell’uomo Greco, La nuova Italia, Florence 1943.

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injustice, to the ambition, to the love, to the ideal that he finds in his life. Not to respond is already a response. Every man is an actor on life’s stage, and whether he likes it or not, he is playing a role. A man’s freedom is challenged and provoked by his affections. However, for freedom to respond appropriately, it has to understand the meaning of the affection; that is, the relationship between the affection and his fulfillment as a human person. And here we come to the point: a man will never understand this relationship if his free will does not wish to be engaged. What comes first, then, meaning or freedom? If it is true that the meaning of an event challenges and provokes our freedom, it is equally true that one who is unwilling to act cannot understand. To solve the mystery, we need to introduce a new element that explains the ultimate root of human freedom. What moves our freedom to become involved in this process? Freedom will only make this step if it receives love, if it understands the love that is at play. It is love that awakens freedom, that embraces it and that renews it from within. Therefore, there is a hermeneutic circularity between the event, freedom, meaning and love. Love is the new element that allows us to understand freedom’s dynamism. The stories we listen to can certainly help, but in order truly to understand, we need to be able to perceive the love that is at play; i.e., the love that touches the heart of man and calls him to something beautiful and great. Within this context, praxis emerges as a qualifying element of truth: not because praxis produces truth,19 but because we are dealing with the truth that touches life in its inner core and which man can understand only if he sets out on the journey. The first act, then, consists in trusting in the love that is offered, and in the value of the story that is handed on.20


19 Cf. L. Melina, Azione: come epifania dell’amore, Cantagalli, Siena 2008, 113-128. 20 Cf. J. Noriega, “Verso la pienezza: gradualità e crescita nella carità,” in J.J. Pérez Soba – O. Gotia, Il cammino della vita: l’educazione, una sfida per la morale, LUP, Roma 2007, 249-271.

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For light to be shed on the meaning of life – on the destiny that makes it so beautiful and great – and for man to desire it and take his proper place therein, he needs continual contact, life lived together, and conversation. Plato explains it in this way: “but after much converse about the matter itself and a life lived together, suddenly a light, as it were, is kindled in one soul by a flame that leaps to it from another, and thereafter sustains itself.”21


21 Plato, Letters VII, 341 c-d. 22 Cf. J. Larrú, “La Famiglia e l’educazione moral virtuosa,” in J. J. Pérez Soba – O. Gotia, Il cammino della vita: l’educazione, una sfida per la morale, LUP, Roma 2007, 325-341.

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Family, Communion and the Communication of Meaning The importance of a child’s surroundings (and their centrality in helping him grasp the meaning of life) now begins to emerge. These surroundings consist in a collection of irrevocable relationships that cannot be modified without the persons involved changing as well. Intergenerational relations, fatherhood and motherhood, childhood, fraternal bonds, and the relationship between spouses: these are the relationships that allow family members to offer one another irrevocable love based not on the pleasure of the moment or on the satisfaction that the other offers, but on a sharing of life’s fullness, on the communion of persons. This is the context in which a child or youngster is also vulnerable to a whole set of interpersonal relationships that affect and challenge him. However, because these relationships are based on irrevocable love, they allow the meaning of the affections they generate through daily encounters and skirmishes to emerge.22 The child is called through these events to take responsibility for his own actions and to interpret his own role. He cannot hide behind the fact that he does not understand the meaning of what is happening, because everyone around is continually reminding him of similar stories, and is asking for his own free response, so that the fullness of family life may be theirs. It becomes immediately apparent in family life that the affections do not end in themselves, and that, if it is important to feel them – indeed, if it is beau-

«The great teacher in values, Max Scheler, said of himself as he reflected on his own inner difficulties and the ruin they caused in his life: “I will never forgive God for having made a beast like me.” Communicating meaning therefore means offering a space and a place in a true relationship.»

tiful feel them – still everything is not confined to feeling. For in order for family life to go on, all of its members need to act and to build, and not only to feel. Within this context, the child comes to understand that his actions always appear as reactions to the actions of the others. In this way, he begins to conceive of a “family ‘we,’” the common representation everyone offers together, and in which each member has his own specific role to play. The child begins to experience the joy of interacting, according to his own role, in the “family ‘we.’” In accepting this challenge, which brings him out of his own interests and desires, the child – who until then was enclosed within “his good” and identified it with what he liked – begins truly to understand what the true good is, i.e. the common good, the good of a family communion made possible by all its members. From this perspective, we can see how man does not truly know how to say “my good” until he is able to say “our good.”23 Therefore, the role of stories is decisive in so far as they provide a first hint at the meaning of the affections. They thereby direct the affective energy from the outset towards the more excellent ways of experiencing affection, ways capable of fulfilling life, of rendering it full and true, ways worthy of imitation.24 The love a child receives will enable


23 Cf. A. MacIntyre, Dependent Rational Animals: Why Human Beings Need the Virtues, Open Court, Chicago 1999. 24 Cf. F. Pesci, Rischio educativo e ricerca di senso, Aracne, Rome 2007. But especially: F. Pesci, Desideri, beni, virtù, felicità. La teoria mimetica di René Girard e l’educazione contemporanea, Lithos, Rome 2010.

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him to open himself to trust and to act for the sake of the common good, by shaping his desires as never before, so that these very desires stably direct him toward the excellence of behavior that truly fulfills life. The teleology of love, and the stories that are handed down from one generation to another, allow the meaning of the affective event to emerge. «Stories help us to see the affections in context, whether fear, love, hatred envy, jealously, daring, etc., by allowing the whole story to unfold, and by locating the origin of the affection in behavior that succeeds, more or less, in bringing fullness to life. Indeed, this fullness is already present at source of the affection and determines its own truth as well as the identity of the subject.»

Muse reading a papyrus, Athens, between 435425 BC.

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Conclusion Education (and the communication of meaning it involves) is not simply a matter of passing on information about values. Educating in values is important, but it has its limits: for it is one thing to learn to appreciate a symphony and quite another to play the violin. The great teacher in values, Max Scheler, said of himself as he reflected on his own inner difficulties and the ruin they caused in his life: “I will never forgive God for having made a beast like me.” Communicating meaning therefore means offering a space and a place in a true relationship. Education involves a true drama: a drama of reciprocal interaction between individuals in a community of action, which is sustained and guided initially by educators, and whose sole aim is to enkindle a light in the one who is being educated so that he, too, might find his proper place. And this is where assistance in interpreting the affections may come in; these affections have a direct relation to a life full of successful relationships; therefore, they need to be molded and shaped to move

in that direction. Macbeth was a victim of an illusion. He himself recognizes this at the end, when he sees the woods surrounding Dunsinane advance toward the castle: “Life’s but a walking shadow, a poor player that struts and frets his hour upon the stage and then is heard no more: it is a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.” But are things really this way? Dear Macbeth, you did not interpret well the witches’ saying and, seized by your own ambition, you thought that you had to realize your own destiny. However, destiny is not fulfilled only through the work of one’s hands. And, above all, one’s destiny is never realized by bloodying one’s hands. You lacked a context of true love to interpret well the witches’ words. You perceived as an echo the voice of your wife, who like you was drunk with ambition. You lacked an authentic communion of persons that would have allowed the meaning of something beautiful to emerge. We can neither understand nor mold meaning by ourselves. It emerges through events, but only within a context of communion, and only if we are provoked and challenged to interact for the sake of the common good. On the stage of life, we will understand what role we are to play if the persons with whom we interpret the drama live out the grandeur and greatness of their relationships in true communion. For it is here that the horizon of fullness that gives meaning to our representation of life emerges.


Translated by Diane Montagna

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«By professing that God has entered history as “fruit of a woman’s womb,” the Catholic Church professes that the created person with the highest dignity is a woman, and places maternity at the heart of faith.»

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La Maestà (detail of the fresco) by Simone Martini. Palazzo Pubblico of Siena, S. XIV

Individualism, Personalism, and the New Evangelization BY ANTONIO SUÁREZ

Insofar as human rights have been used to justify possessive individualism, they have been deprived of their true meaning. In the name of new human rights, of second and third generation, of purely positivistic inspiration, and in accord with an absolutism of the technical, the core of the natural law is infringed. This predominant ideology is, maybe, the main obstacle for the task of the New Evangelization.

“What is the truth? One day Jesus said: ‘I am the way,

and the truth and the life’ (Jn 14: 6). Thus, the correct formulation of the question is not ‘What is the truth?’ but ‘Who is the truth?’ It is this question too that men and women of the third millennium are asking themselves.”1 With these words John Paul II recalled, in his visit to Switzerland in 2004, a basic principle of Catholic faith: the truth is a Person. With Christ “the truth in Person” breaks into history.2 The incarnation of the second Person of the Holy Trinity manifests, in an evident way, the personal character of the human body: “The glory of the Blessed Trinity is reflected in human beings, created by God.”3 Furthermore, with His HUMANITAS Nº 5 pp. 72 -83


1 John Paul II, Homily in Bern, (6.6.2004). 2 Origen, Contra Celso. 3 John Paul II, op. cit.

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4 See Benedict XVI, Motu proprio Porta fidei (11.10.2011).

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incarnation, this divine Person brings about the Redemption of all mankind. Therefore, by professing the incarnation we also profess that each human body has a personal character: the person and their fundamental rights are determined by their belonging to the human species. Finally, by professing that God has entered history as “fruit of a woman’s womb,” the Catholic Church professes that the created person with the highest dignity is a woman, and places maternity at the heart of faith. By confessing that Jesus Christ is the truth, we proclaim the dignity of the human person, of maternity, and of humanity. By winning souls for Christ, we help make the world more human. This message is especially relevant at the current historical moment, also in view of the new evangelization.4

The Basis of Rights The principle according to which the person is defined by her belonging to the human species means that the fundamental human rights should not be established on the basis of her belonging to a subgroup of mankind, no matter how this is defined: race, religion, people or nation, political class. Nor should the rights of humanity be reduced to those of the present generation. Certainly, this principle may be professed without professing the Catholic faith. It amazes us, however, that the Catholic Church now seems to be the only religious and moral authority that defends them. Maybe the reason is that one cannot deny this principle if one is a Catholic, for such rejection would at the same time imply making vacuous the central truths of faith, such as the Incarnation and the universal value of Redemption. From this standpoint, Catholic truth presents itself as a guarantee of humanity. It is also important to notice that the principle which we are referring to is not just a “principle of natural right.” The human body, i.e. our personal identity, constitutes the visible basis of rights: it is, as it were, the “main document”

of every contract (any identification document refers to the body). Consequently, this fundamental principle of Catholic faith is at the same time the ground of all rights (natural, civil, penal, constitutional). When it is affirmed that civil society and the rule of law emerge from a “social contract” among men, one should not lose sight of the fact that this contract is not a voluntary agreement between “pure subjectivities,” but between “incarnated freedoms.” That which enables men to form a society is their belonging to the human species (human family).5 Humanity precedes society.

The Service of the Catholic Church In the current world, it is normal, when someone proclaims the inseparability of the individual and the human species, that he be identified as a Catholic. It is not easy to refute this idea, and it may even be counterproductive. In fact, it may be more effective to stress that it is a principle without which the law will end up collapsing (just as a roof made of concrete, deteriorated by years of corrosion, suddenly collapses), and that by defending this principle the Catholic Church serves the person, the law, and humanity. “The Church has a responsibility towards creation,” and considers that it is her duty to “protect mankind from selfdestruction.”6 On the other hand, it should not be forgotten that he or she who defends this fundamental principle of law and lives well in accordance with it, “observes the natural law and its precepts [...] and is able to attain eternal life by the efficacious virtue of divine light and grace.”7 This means that he or she actually forms part of the Catholic Church, for “extra Ecclesiam nulla salus.”8 Regarding this, the addresses delivered by Benedict XVI at Westminster Hall (9.17.2010) and the Bundestag (9.22.2011) are significant. It seems as if mankind would be increasingly in need of the Catholic Church’s support at the time of renewing the respect for the law and for the human species.


5 See Benedicto XVI, Caritas in veritate (6.26.2009), n. 53; Leo XIII, Diuturnum illud (6. 29.1881); Pius VI, Breve Quod alicuantum (3. 10.1791). 6 Benedict XVI, Caritas in veritate (6. 29.2009), n. 51. 7 Pius IX, Quanto conficiamur moerere (8.10.1863). 8 See Catechism of the Catholic Church, 846-848.

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Overcoming Individualism


It is a great merit of modern humanism that it recognises the importance of the freedom to organise society in a way more consonant with the dignity of the human person. The concept of human rights, the idea of the equality of all men before the law, the democratic participation of citizens in government, constitutionalism, and the separation of powers constitute part of these results. Nonetheless, modern humanism, mostly in the form of the liberal ideology of the Enlightenment, included a view of man not centered on the person, but on the individual understood as pure subjectivity. It can be said that this view is a “positivistic individualism,” an ideology according to which the individual is “only a self-creating freedom.”9 Liberalism, for example, in its original version, not only included the excellent economical principle of the “free market,” but also a “possessive individualism,” which celebrates the “relation to property” while forgetting the metaphysics of the “interpersonal relation.”10 According to that “individualism,” the body is not a person, but an absolute property of the subject. This is valid regarding one’s own body, but also regarding other human bodies over which one eventually comes to have power. Human society is reduced to a network of market relations, and communal life is an equilibrium of selfish interests.11 The individual has absolute primacy, even over the human species. Insofar as human rights have been used to justify possessive individualism, they have been deprived of their true meaning.

The Error of Collectivism 9 Benedict XVI, Address to the Bundestag,9.22.2011. 10 See Benedict XVI, Caritas in veritate (6. 29.2009), n. 53. 11 See Crawford Brough Macpherson, The Political Theory of Possessive Individualism: Hobbes to Locke, 1962, Oxford University Press, USA; Reprint edition 2011.

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The intellectual necessity of taming “possessive individualism” has led to collectivist ideologies that have tried to set limits to it through various means of socialization. In spite of preserving the primacy of the “property relation,”

(…) THIS MESSAGE IS ESPECIALLY RELEVANT AT THE CURRENT HISTORICAL MOMENT, ALSO IN VIEW OF THE NEW EVANGELIZATION. «Already in the nineteenth century the Magisterium highlighted the error of “possessive individualism”, disguised as a liberal ideology. For example, Pius IX states that “where religion has been removed from civil society, and the doctrine and authority of divine revelation repudiated, the genuine notion itself of justice and human right is darkened and lost, and the place of true justice and legitimate right is supplied by material force.»

socialist collectivism has tried to remedy the disastrous consequences that follow from this postulate by bestowing “society” with the ownership of property rights. However, as said before, the concept of “society” (in contraposition to that of “human species”) is vague, and the definition of “social good” is left to those in power. National Socialism

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12 See Benedict XVI, Address to the Bundestag, 9.22.2011. 13 See Leo XIII, Longinqua oceani (1.1.1895); Pius XII, Serium laetitiae (11.1.1939).

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proceeded with racist and nationalistic criteria; Marxism, with criteria regarding political class. The remedy turned out to be worse than the disease: it was like thinking that the fire could be put out with gasoline “because it is liquid.” A contradictory dialectic was established, incapable of coherently grounding personal rights, that is to say, on the basis of one’s belonging to mankind. Consequently, totalitarian regimes emerged, which in the name of “freedom” perverted the law and sacrificed the person.12 Furthermore, insofar as truth is concerned, the positivistic postulate of individualism leads to relativism and rejects any boundaries to freedom that are not the result of voluntary decisions made by the individuals in the various associations in which they constitute themselves. Finally, this postulate has led Europe to “secularism,” a movement of “secularization,” which culminated in the Marxist vindication of the State’s emancipation from God, religion, and morals (secularism). It is worth noticing, even if only by passing, that American constitutionalism developed in a different way, on the basis of the principles stated by George Washington in his Farewell Address: religion and morality are necessary resorts of all dispositions and virtues that lead to political prosperity. He who subverts these great pillars of human and civil happiness cannot pretend to be a patriot. It would be impossible to guarantee the fundamental rights (property, life, education) if the exercise of justice lacked the religious sense. It would be a mistake to think that national morality could persist without the religious principle. Leo XIII explicitly quotes the first president of the United States and uses the ideas of the Farewell Address when formulating the fundamental principles of social Catholic doctrine; and the same direction is then followed by Pius XII.13

«Regarding this, the addresses delivered by Benedict XVI at Westminster Hall (in the picture) and the Bundestag are significant. It seems as if mankind would be increasingly in need of the Catholic Church’s support at the time of renewing the respect for the law and for the human species.»

Personalism’s Solution The collectivist ideologies have been reduced to absurdity by history. On the contrary, individualism is still alive: it is today the predominant ideology, and maybe the main obstacle for the task of the new evangelization. A first step towards overcoming it consists in not mistaking it with Christian personalism. It’s easy to think, for example, that “liberal individualism” and “Christian personalism” are equivalent given that both affirm the primacy of the individual vis-à-vis the State and society. Certainly, during the

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«A contradictory dialectic was established, incapable of coherently grounding personal rights, that is to say, on the basis of one’s belonging to mankind. Consequently, totalitarian regimes emerged, which in the name of “freedom” perverted the law and sacrificed the person.»

14 Benedict XVI, Caritas in veritate (6.29.2009), n. 53.

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twentieth century, the struggle against totalitarianism led to a rapprochement between liberal and Catholic positions; for example, regarding the defence of private property. However, there is a deep difference: “liberal individualism” defends the primacy of the person vis-à-vis the human species; whereas “Christian personalism” defends the inseparability of the person and the human species: the relation between the person and her humanity is one of a whole to another whole.14 This difference is precisely what leads to very divergent positions on subjects such as marriage, family, and life.

Marriage, Life, and Family

Beneath errors such as divorce, contraception, the destruction of embryos and foetuses, or same-sex marriage, is hidden a subtle negation of the principle according to which no individual owns the human species. Let’s consider, for example, the case of contraception: everyone acknowledges that if the exercise of sexuality was not tied to a pleasure so great, “the human species would have become extinct a long time ago.” By considering legitimate to produce this pleasure “at will” (that is, to willingly eliminate all chances of conception), a behavior is legitimised which, at least in principle, implies extinction (besides the grave damage it produces to interpersonal relations and marital love). In any case, it is understood that individual pleasure trumps the conservation of the species. Yet insofar as a person’s belonging to the species is the visible basis of personal rights, this very basis is called into question, which ultimately leads, among other things, to legitimize the destruction of defenseless human beings.

In such a breach of the fifth commandment, the aberration is easily recognised, since the abuse affects a human body, and so it becomes plain that it is at the same time an abusive act against the human species. The breach of the sixth commandment is an abusive act (in principle) against the species without directly abusing a human person. However, by agreeing to the principle according to which “the individual owns the human species,” one also agrees to the idea that the individual owns human bodies, over which he acquires de facto power. This means the establishment of a mentality that is open to violence. In the last meeting in Assisi, a representative of agnostic humanism declared the following: “Secularism is the only form of civilisation that does not include a reflection on maternity.” I think one could not express in a better way the fact that the “secular State” bears in itself a tendency against maternity and destructive of mankind. Already in the nineteenth century the Magisterium highlighted the error of “possessive individualism,” disguised as a liberal ideology. For example, Pius IX states that “where religion has been removed from civil society, and the doctrine and authority of divine revelation repudiated, the genuine notion itself of justice and human right is darkened and lost, and the place of true justice and legitimate right is supplied by material force.” And, in terms which may be considered prophetical in light of the current economic crisis, he insists on the fact that “human society, when set loose from the bonds of religion and true justice, can have, in truth, no other end than the purpose of obtaining and amassing wealth, and that (society under such circumstances) follows no other law in its actions, except the unchastened desire of ministering to its own pleasure and interests.”15 In decidedly fighting against “liberal individualism,” the Magisterium prior to the Second Vatican Council upheld (indirectly, if you will, but without hesitation) the Catholic view of the person and the basis of rights. The Second Vatican Council in a certain way introduced a change of perspective, and the Magisterium succeeding


15 Pius IX, Quanta cura (12.8.1864).

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16 Benedict XVI, Address to the Bundestag (9.22.2011). 17 Benedict XVI, Address (8.16.2011).

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it mainly stresses the proclamation of the doctrine of the person and her rights. Nonetheless, it condemns individualism and positivism (for example, in bioethical and family matters). Both before and after the Second Vatican Council, the Vicar of Christ, in defending “the truth in Person,” defended and will always defend the person and mankind. On one hand, it is very important, for the sake of permeating today’s culture with the spirit of the Gospel, not to appear as one who sacrifices freedom in the name of truth. Yet, on the other hand, it would be counterproductive to accept the thesis that “the Catholic Magisterium has sacrificed freedom and personal rights in the name of truth.” If one accepts this thesis, one would be suggesting that the Magisterium has defended a truth which is not a person; and this, as we have seen, is a negation of the very basis of Christian faith. By defending the principle according to which the human body is personal and is the visible basis of rights, the Magisterium has rather defended the truth without which it is not possible to define the person; a truth which every State has the duty to defend, even in a coercive manner. As Benedict XVI recalled before the German Parliament: “It is evident that for the fundamental issues of law, in which the dignity of man and of humanity is at stake, the majority principle is not enough.”16 One must bear in mind “the universal human good.”17

Christian Humanism “The truth is Jesus Christ, who came into the world to reveal to us and give to us the Father’s love. We are called to witness to this truth with words and especially with life!”18 Rather than by refuting doctrinal errors and teaching abstract truths, the new evangelization will be carried out by our witnessing with our lives the adherence to the Truth in person, Jesus Christ. “Christ reveals man to man,”19 John Paul II insisted tirelessly, and he ended up tearing down the walls of atheist Marxist collectivism. By presenting the Incarnation, the personal character of the human body is proclaimed; maternity is exalted; and mankind is defended. By insisting on the fact that “the Truth is a person: Jesus Christ,” we shall free our culture from the subtle chains of hedonist and positivistic individualism, and shall establish Christian personalism and humanism.

Translated by Rafael Simian


18 John Paul II, Homily in Bern, 6.6.2004. 19 See Thomas Aquinas, S. Th., II-II, q. 11, a. 1.

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«Miguel de Unamuno has illustrated it in this way when he identifies Sancho’s fear of the windmills with the fear that agitates the man of our time when faced with his own technological products. It is a fear that prevents him from living according to his proper humanity.» Don Quixote of La Mancha, engraved by Gustav Doré.

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Cervantes and the Question of Modern M an BY JOSÉ GRANADOS DCJM


t may be helpful for those who would like to analyse the course of modern times to take up Don Quixote again, in order to see where on the path of Modern times we find ourselves now. Cervantes’ great novel has been successful without interruption since its appearance. It made the Romantics cry, and the revolutionaries dreamt, when reading it, of a freedom with no boundaries. Its author probably did not suspect that the adventures of this mad knight-errant would continue to live for so long in the hearts of many. And the fact is, considered in itself, mysterious: What is it that made the story of the amusing nobleman and his funny squire have such penetration during the course of Modernity? The novel’s success can be explained by recourse to the contrast between the world of dreams and ideals embodied in the noble Quixote, and the mundane horizon, the everyday reality, represented by Panza.1 While the first aspires to greatness of spirit, free from all barriers and in constant search of adventures, the other witnesses to the disenchantment of the modern world. In fact, we inhabit a universe without mysteries, one which we think can be wholly explained (or will be one day) according to the laws of mathematics and physics. And so it is a universe incapable of providing a horizon for the human quest for meaning. The genius of the first modern novel consisted—we should notice—in the fact that its theme coincided perfectly with that of the new age. Indeed, the novel represents the abyss that opens between man’s gigantic desires and his helpless situation in a cosmos lacking any messages.2 Miguel de Unamuno has illustrated it in this way when he identifies Sancho’s fear of the windmills with the fear that agitates the man of our time when faced with his own technological products. It is a fear that prevents him from living according to his proper humanity: The Knight was right: fear and only fear made Sancho and us, ordinary mortals, see windmills in the unbridled giants that sow evil upon the earth. [...] Today they don’t appear to us as windmills

HUMANITAS Nº 5 pp. 84 - 91


* The following article was published as the “Introduction” to the book Teología de la Carne—El cuerpo en la Historia de la Salvación (Editorial Montecarmelo y Didaskalios, Burgos 2012) by professor José Granados, from the Pontifical Institute John Paul II for Studies on Marriage and Family. We thank the author for granting us his authorization.

1 Cf. J. Ortega y Gasset, Meditaciones del Quijote [Meditations of Don Quixote], Alcaraz, Madrid, 1914, 54-55. 2 Cf. J. Marías, Cervantes clave española [Cervantes: Spanish Key], Alianza, Madrid 2003.

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anymore, but as locomotives, generators, turbines, steam ships, automobiles, telegraphs with or without wires, machine guns and ovariotomy tools, yet they contrive the same harm. Fear and only Sanchoesque fear inspires in us the cult and veneration of steam and electricity; fear and only Sanchoesque fear makes us fall on bended knee before the unbridled giants of mechanics and chemistry, imploring them for mercy. And at last will mankind give up its spirit, exhausted with fatigue and tediousness, at the feet of a colossal fabric of the Elixir of eternal life. And the exhausted Don Quixote shall live, because he sought for health within himself and dared to attack the windmills.3 THE GENIUS OF THE FIRST MODERN NOVEL CONSISTED –WE SHOULD NOTICE IT– IN THE FACT THAT ITS THEME COINCIDED PERFECTLY WITH THAT OF THE NEW AGE. INDEED, THE NOVEL REPRESENTS THE ABYSS THAT OPENS BETWEEN MAN’S GIGANTIC DESIRES AND HIS HELPLESS SITUATION IN A COSMOS LACKING ANY MESSAGES.

3 M. de Unamuno, Vida de Don Quijote y Sancho, [The Life of Don Quixote and Sancho], Madrid 1905. 4 See the interesting study by D. Leder, The Absent Body, University of Chicago Press, Chicago 1990.

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“The exhausted Don Quixote shall live, because he sought for health within himself.” Unamuno thus describes for us the only way out that seems still open to man. Given that the world of nature, similar to an immense machinery, is uninhabitable, one must take refuge in another sphere of reality, “within oneself.” It is the sphere of one’s own self, isolated from all contact with the natural sciences, and involving the realm of the subjective: art, morals, religion... But is this a real solution to human problems? Man does not find within himself the refuge for which he seeks. For the crack dividing the modern world runs through his own being: it is a crack that reaches the bond between soul and body to divide them. In fact, since Descartes, the body tends to be considered one more part of the vast universe ruled by the laws of physics. We know the equations that govern it, described with the aid of the positive sciences. And one day, when we know all about it, we will be capable of replacing it with a mechanical artifact more docile to our commands. And yet this worldview does not remove the sensation that the body belongs to one’s own identity; that I am my body; that without the body man cannot orient himself within the labyrinth of life. Cervantes, in his Quixote, made this contrast his favourite subject, which is the great enigma of the human condition. The knight-errant’s madness leads him to almost forget the concerns for the body, and his broken silhouette shall receive the nickname “the knight of the sad countenance.” Sancho, on the other hand, continually reminds us of the bodily demands of life: the need to eat, drink, and sleep. In this horizon we can again formulate the question: Is it possible to reconcile the two extremes of Cervantes’ novel? Can the everyday world represented by Sancho be a place in which the ultimate meaning, that which provides life with a definite sense, may be made manifest? Or should we rather leave this cosmos to itself, as a lifeless

universe, incapable of producing wonder and of offering answers to our thousand questions? In other words, we ask ourselves whether reality may be rediscovered as a domain in which there is room for mystery—the manifestation of that which, being beyond ourselves, provides a sense to everything we do. Going back to the example used by Unamuno, we can say that, in another time, Don Quixote’s windmills—the air that propels them and the flour ground in them— evoked much more than natural processes subject to anonymous laws; they had a symbolic value that allowed man to discover the horizon of his journey through the world. The wind spoke of breath, from which man receives life; flour recalls bread, which relates man to the earth and reveals to him the benefits upon which his existence depends. Should we resign ourselves to the windmills being reduced to technological products, unable to symbolise our origin and goal? Regarding this it is interesting to go back to the creative reading of Don Quixote that Unamuno carried out in his The Life of Don Quixote and Sancho, where the hero’s madness is actually due to a frustrated love for Aldonza Lorenzo.5 Alonso Quijano’s unrequited love results in the protagonist’s vital disillusionment; he no longer has faith in finding an answer to his wishes in the grey landscape of La Mancha. That is why he feels the need to revive the mad world of knighterrantry. Aldonza is transformed into Dulcinea, and Alonso Quijano comes to be Don Quixote. By making this connection between the love for Aldonza and the ideals of Don Quixote, Unamuno identified that door through which novelty and wonder are still able to enter into man’s ordinary existence. In commenting on the adventure with the lions, when the Knight fights the beast with the sole aim of showing his courage, the author writes:


Wonderful feat! Never seen courage of Don Quixote, and simple courage, without motive or aim, pure courage, unblemished courage! Wouldn’t it be that while Don Quixote flaunted thus his courage, underneath him the poor Alonso the Good, weary by the disappointment suffered by not encountering the sighed-for Aldonza, sought to die in the claws and jaws of the lion, a death not as torturing as that which his wretched love was inflicting on him?6

Thus, according to this reading, the experience of loving Aldonza, had it been successful, would have offered our knight the cure to heal the wound that lacerated his existence. Here one discerns, even if only vaguely, that in love, man’s concrete experience, the totality of life in its many dimensions (body, soul, spirit) speaks a language that orients him in his search for refuge and direction.

5 Julián Marías agrees on this point with Unamuno’s interpretation. According to Marías’ analysis, if Cervantes’ life and the rest of his works are taken into account, it can be shown that Don Quixote’s main subject is precisely human love as a key to interpret the whole of human existence. Cf. J. Marías, Miguel de Unamuno, Espasa Calpe, Madrid 1976. 6 M. de Unamuno, Vida de don Quijote y Sancho [The Life of Don Quixote and Sancho], p. 237.

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7 Cf. A Howson, The Body in Society, Polity Press, Cambridge 2004. 8 Cf. M. Foucault, Histoire de la sexualité [A History of Sexuality], 3 vols., Gallimard, Paris 1976-1984. 9 Cf. A. Giddens, Modernity and Self-Identity: Self and Society in the Late Modern Age, Stanford University Press, Stanford, CA, 1991; Ibid., The Transformation of Intimacy: Sexuality, Love and Eroticism in Modern Society, Stanford University Press, Stanford, CA, 1992; Ibid., Runaway World: How Globalisation is Reshaping our Lives, Routledge, London 2002.

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Is it not possible that the promise love bears in itself lead us to disappointment? For love to be able to provide meaning to life, beyond romantic effervescence, we must search in it for an ointment that heals the cracks of our torn apart world. Love should be capable of suturing the original scar that divides man from his own body. That is why an analysis of love serves no purpose if it does not relate it to the body, and through it, to the universe that surrounds us. The answer to the question of the body hinges on love and, in the same way, the answer to the question of love hinges on the body. As we shall try to show in the coming pages, the solution to the problem must reside in that precise point where love and body come together. In fact, we notice that in contemporary attempts to overcome the crisis of meaning experienced by man, the key point is precisely the bond between his bodily condition, on one hand, and personal relations, on the other. Sociology, for example, returns now to the body in order to discover there a key element in the construction of the human city. The body appears as a place through which man can escape his chronic isolation, coming into contact with others and establishing long-lasting ties.7 Body and love invoke each other to offer us an enclave where salvation is possible. This rediscovery of the body, however, has received disagreeing interpretations. There is, for example, Michel Foucault’s view.8 The body is, according to his analysis, a means through which the individual’s private life is subjected to the oppression of a controlling State. So it has been, for example, with the way sexuality has been conceived and the liberation thereof; and the same can be said of other institutions, such as the modern clinic. Foucault speaks of administrative power or bio-power, in order to describe these ways in which man’s intimacy is abused and violated through his corporality. A much more optimistic analysis is given by the British sociologist Anthony Giddens.9 He ascribes to the body what is in his view a very positive role: the body is capable of fulfilling the task initiated by Modernity. According to Giddens, our age, which he calls High Modernity or Late Modernity, does not consider the body as something already constituted, but as an element that can be recreated and incorporated into one’s own personal project. The body thus comes to be the axis where the success of the liberal democratic project pivots. The transformation of the body is the way to conquer the individual’s private sphere for the cause of liberty. If this task is to be accomplished, politics is required to take a serious interest in private life, and to help remodel intimate relations. This view concerns in a very special way the so-called “traditional family,” the last bastion of an antiquated regime in which nature is not yet completely malleable according to human desires. Therefore, the traditional family shall

«At the end of the novel, faced with his destiny, at the moment of death, it is conceded to the hero to find again the path of mental health. Such healing is possible because, in this last moment, his body, in fragility and poverty, finally speaks of the true adventure, of the true call to transcendence that the flesh makes transparent, not only in the hour of death, but during the whole journey of life.» Don Quixote of La Mancha, engraved by Gustav Doré.

have to be disarticulated for the sake of a liberty without any ties.10 From the disagreement between Foucault and Giddens we can nevertheless rescue a point of agreement: the importance given to the body in the elaboration of man’s identity. For the body determines, for good or bad, his life in society and, in the domain of private life, his personal relations. However, we are lacking an orientation to help us decide whether these views are adequate. Is man, as Foucault says, defenceless before the powers of society? Should man be optimistic,

10 Giddens’ work has in fact inspired family policies developed in some Western countries during the last decade: they are policies which, as is widely known, aim at redefining the so-called “traditional family” (which is simply the family).

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11 Cf. Tertullian, De resurrectione mortuorum [On the Resurrection of the Dead], 9.2 (CCL 2, 932). 12 The phrase was coined by Friedrich Christoph Oetinger (“Leiblichkeit ist das Ende der Werke Gottes”); cf. H. Schlier, Grundzüge einer Paulinischen Theologie [Fundamental Elements of Pauline Theology], Herder, Freiburg–Basel–Wien, 1978, p. 99. 13 Cf. Tertullian, De resurrectione mortuorum, 8.2 (CCL 2, 931). In what follows we shall not distinguish between the terms “body” and “flesh,” unless the context indicates it. Of course, there are differences between them, which vary according to the use each author makes of them. In St. Paul, the term “flesh” tends to have a negative implication when compared with “body,” although in many uses both terms are interchangeable. Thus, whereas the body is called to acquire immortality, the term “flesh” is applied only to what is corruptible. Cf. J. A. T. Robinson, The Body: A Study in Pauline Theology, The Westminster Press, Philadelphia 1952, p. 31: “whereas sarx [flesh] refers to man, in the solidarity of creation, as distant to God, soma [body] refers to man, in the solidarity of creation, as he was made by God.” On the other hand, for some of the Church Fathers, e.g. Irenaeus or Tertullian, the term “flesh” (caro) acquires a more specific meaning, and it is preferred to “body” (corpus) to express the properly Christian view. “Flesh” indicates man’s relation to the rest of creation, and thus his inclusion in his world and his relation to the rest of the human family. To include a modern author in this overview, Michel Henry has based his phenomenology of the Incarnation on the term “flesh,” which refers to the human body as lived, and which Henry opposes (excessively, in our opinion) to the mundane body, a merely external reality. Cf. M. Henry, Incarnation: Une Philosophie de la Chair [The Incarnation: A Philosophy of the Flesh], Seuil, Paris 2000. 14 Cf. G. G. Stroumsa, “Caro salutis cardo: Shaping the Person in Early Christian Thought,” History of Religions, 30, no. 1 (1990), 25-50.

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as Giddens proposes, with an optimism based on his sole decision and deprived of a larger framework for orientation? Or does the body announce a message of freedom to man, making him see that it is possible to break his isolation, beyond the paralysing anxiety in which the post-modern project has immersed him? All this—which is very important for the future of our society— places before Christianity a key challenge and opportunity. In fact, by returning to the body, our culture has come to place itself, maybe without intending to, in the exact point where the gospel of Christ proclaims its message. In effect, according to Christianity, the body has been chosen by God to manifest his divine mystery and thus offer salvation to man. Tertullian speaks of God’s appreciation for the flesh, which is “the labor of His own hands, the care of His own thoughts, the receptacle of His own Spirit, the queen of His creation, the inheritor of His own liberality, the priestess of His religion, the champion of His testimony, the sister of His Christ!”11 And in the same way it has been possible to summarise Saint Paul’s theology with the sentence: “The body is the end of all of God’s works.”12 Now, since the heart of Christianity is precisely the revelation of God as love (cf. Jn 4: 7-10), to say that God reveals himself in the body is equivalent to defining the body as the proper place for the manifestation of love. Thus, according to the gospels, if the body has a language, it does not speak to us of the oppression others exercise on the individual (Foucault), nor does it express itself with the moderate optimism of those who try to construct their autonomous identity and project (Giddens). The body’s language rather serves the purpose of expressing the truth and plenitude of that love in which man was created in the beginning and in which he shall find fulfilment at the fullness of times. In fact, Tertullian has called the body “the jamb (or axis) of salvation” (caro salutis est cardo).13 Here we find a very rich perspective, with which theology can answer the cultural challenge we have described.14 The body is the very condition on which salvation hinges in at least these two ways, associated with the Latin word cardo. a) Cardo is in the first place the jamb into which the door turns and opens. We want to show in these pages that the flesh is the jamb of salvation because it allows man’s world to open itself, to show the access to transcendence, to the mystery of God’s manifestation. Going back to Cervantes’ novel, we can say that the body is the place where the everyday reality inhabited by Sancho Panza shows the access to Don Quixote’s ideals. This openness takes place insofar as the body is the

space where human love is present in human experience; a space which Christ shall enter into in order to express the plenitude of divine love. b) Cardo can also mean the main street of Roman cities, which, along with the Decumano, provided structure to the whole city. In theology, too, the flesh is turned into the main axis where the lines of man’s experience and God’s revelation are intertwined, allowing us to grasp the architecture of Christian salvation. Accordingly, we shall see how the logic of the body, united with the logic of love, grants us access to the logic of revelation.15 What happens when we take the body as the true jamb of our theological reflection, as the “theological place” par excellence, the place chosen by God to reveal himself in plenitude to man? What way of understanding the world, the human person, and God results from this perspective? And how can this view direct our steps in this cultural moment? Theology offers an answer to the question set forth in Cervantes’ novel, which is the question of modern man. Cervantes himself, while narrating the drama of a broken existence, offered a solution by placing at the center of his novel the friendship between the Knight and Sancho, which grows and develops from page to page. This deep camaraderie will open Sancho’s world upwards, a world previously deprived of hope; and it will help Don Quixote to find the connection between his mission as a knight and the everyday experience of living. At the end of the novel, faced with his destiny, at the moment of death, it is conceded to the hero to find again the path of mental health. Such healing is possible because, in this last moment, his body, in fragility and poverty, finally speaks of the true adventure, of the true call to transcendence that the flesh makes transparent, not only in the hour of death, but during the whole journey of life.

Translated by Rafael Simian


15 According to St. Irenaeus of Lyon, the task of the theologian consists in explaining the history of the world as a history of the salvation of the flesh. Theology should avoid the speculations proper to Gnostic thought. Its task is rather “quare Verbum Dei caro factum est et passus est, gratias agere... et quemadmodum mortalis haec caro induet immortalitatem et corruptibile incurruptelam, adnuntiare...” (cf. Adversus Haereses I, 10, 3; SC 264, 162-164).

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«In the human being something “reveals” itself to us that is more than any finite and conditioned mode of being; thus, the term “image.” In contrast to mere pictures, which are images only in an accidental sense, the human is created as image. Human being is being an image. Thus human being participates in the incorruptibility of the One of whom the human is an image. Human beings are called to eternal life.» Drawing of Edgar Degas by Manet.

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Is every human being a person? BY ROBERT SPAEMANN

Defining the question The Papal encyclical, Evangelium vitae (EV), declares solemnly that “... the direct and voluntary killing of an innocent human being is always gravely immoral” (EV 57). This unconditional ethical obligation to respect every human life is justified by reference to “the incomparable dignity of the human person.” Such an unconditioned claim is made upon us by the face of every human being we meet. The encyclical supports this claim of intuitive perception with two arguments. First and foremost, the claim to unconditional respect is based biblically and theologically on the recognition of the human being as the imago Dei. The human is the “image” of God. Humans, however, are not unconditioned simply taken in themselves; merely as such, theirs is a most conditioned, finite being, which can be transformed from living to dead with hardly the lifting of a finger. And yet, such violence, while always possible for us physically, is absolutely impossible on another level. In the human being something “reveals” itself to us that is more than any finite and conditioned mode of being; thus, the term “image.” In contrast to mere pictures, which are images only in an accidental sense, the human is created as image. Human being is being an image. Thus human being participates in the incorruptibility of the One of whom the human is an image. Human beings are called to eternal life. The second and secondary argument is based on the consequences of not respecting the unconditioned dignity of the human being. The encyclical points out that an order of law in which the freedom from being at another’s free disposition is lacking does not deserve the name of law; it is merely an organization of the power of the stronger over the weaker. In section nineteen the pope mentions a theory held by some who would acknowledge only those humans as subjects of legal rights who already manifest certain signs of personal autonomy. He also speaks of the theory of those who would “identify the dignity of the person with the capacity for explicitly verbal communication.” Not included in this category are therefore the unborn, the dying, and severely impaired or senile humans; although not mentioned by the encyclical, it must be added that by this theory infants are excluded as well. HUMANITAS Nº 5 pp. 92 - 103


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1 Peter Singer, Practical Ethics, Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 1979. An expanded second edition appeared in 1993 (Cambridge University Press). 2 “A week-old baby is not a rational and self-conscious being, and there are many nonhuman animals whose rationality, self-consciousness, awareness, capacity to feel, and so on, exceed that of a human baby a week, a month, or even a year old. If the fetus does not have the same claim to life as a person, it appears that the newborn baby does not either, and the life of a newborn baby is of less value than the life of a pig, a dog, or a chimpanzee” (Singer, Practical Ethics, 122-23; in the second edition this statement appears with slight modifications on p. 169). 3 Cf. also Norbert Hoerster, Abtreibung im ¡achularen Staat: Argumente gegen den Paragraphen 21S, Frankfurt, 1991.

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In his book, Practical Ethics,1 the most influential proponent of this theory, Peter Singer, has declared outright that the life of a human infant is of less value than that of an adult pig.2 Because the encyclical argues for the most part theologically, it does not deal closely with the arguments proposed by Singer and his followers in their attempt to eliminate human rights and to claim that not all human beings are persons.3 The Holy Scriptures do not speak of “persons” as such, but simply of human beings. For revelation, humanity is one single family: all that are begotten of humans belong to this family. The conviction that even newly born children possess human dignity is reflected in the infancy narratives of the Gospel, where the shepherds and kings worship the child at Bethlehem. The conviction that human being begins with conception is reflected in the celebration of the Annunciation as a feast of the Lord; the conviction is also shown by the feast of Mary’s conception as well. Peter Singer responds that this might all be well and good for believing Jews and Christians, and thus they can respect their own babies, if they wish, but they should not demand that others do likewise, as there are no arguments of reason for doing so. Quite to the contrary, he argues, the partisanship for one’s own species is merely a kind of racism, or “species-ism,” here for the human race and species. If humans have higher rights than animals, then that is merely because they possess certain properties lacked by others: self-consciousness, the sense of one’s own life as the whole of a biography, linguistic communication, et cetera. Every other being in the universe that had these properties would possess the same rights. But human beings who do not have these properties, those who do not yet have such properties or who no longer or perhaps even never had them in actu, also do not have such rights. They are not persons. Peter Singer is simply drawing the ultimate consequence out of the theory already held by John Locke, who separated the being of a person from human being for the first time, considering personality as one particular characteristic of human beings, a characteristic that need not always be present. In the following reflections, I would like to present quite briefly several theses about this theory in order to show that this separation makes no sense even on rational grounds, much less on religious ones. Rational argument shows that we must continue to hold that all humans are persons.

On persons and properties Of course, in one sense we do name individuals of a certain species or even of several species “persons” on the basis of a number of certain properties. On the other hand, the concept of person is not

«The Holy Scriptures do not speak of “persons” as such, but simply of human beings. For revelation, humanity is one single family: all that are begotten of humans belong to this family. The conviction that even newly born children possess human dignity is reflected in the infancy narratives of the Gospel, where the shepherds and kings worship the child at Bethlehem. The conviction that human being begins with conception is reflected in the celebration of the Annunciation as a feast of the Lord; the conviction is also shown by the feast of Mary’s conception as well.» Annunciation by Fra Angelico

a predicate by which we name an individual as one instance of a concept and thus subsume it under a certain class. In order to characterize an individual as a person, we need to know in advance to what class it belongs; whether it is a human being or an angel or a rational being of some still unknown kind. The question which needs to be answered is this: If there are certain specific characteristics by which we describe certain beings as persons, then are those individuals of this species still persons, even if they do not possess these characteristics? I shall not discuss here in detail the different conceptual definitions of person, beginning with the famous one of Boethius (individua substantia rationalis naturae), but rather I wish to begin with a notion introduced into the discussion by Harry Frankfurt. Harry Frankfurt speaks of “secondary volitions.”4 He means by this term wishes and other acts of the will that direct themselves towards one’s own wishes and one’s own acts of will. It is uniquely human that we not only have intentions and propositional attitudes, not only wishes and acts of will, but that we can wish, that we might wish, or that we might not wish for something in particular. Anyone who struggles with an addiction or another self-destructive habit knows this: We can wish to wish differently than we do. Humans are not just in some set mode, but they can wish to be otherwise. To some degree, they can try to influence and manipulate themselves; truly, we can wish somehow to be altogether different human beings than we are. With this we have admittedly gone a good way beyond that which Frankfurt had meant to say. Humans can imagine themselves

4 Cf. Harry G. Frankfurt, “Freedom of the Will and the Concept of Person,” The Journal of Philosophy 68, 1971, 5-21; Idem, “Identification and Externality,” in A. Oksenberg Rorty, ed., The Identities of Persons, Berkeley, University of California Press, 1976, 239-252.

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«If humans have higher rights than animals, then that is merely because they possess certain properties lacked by others. But human beings who do not have these properties, those who do not yet have such properties or who no longer or perhaps even never had them in actu, also do not have such rights. They are not persons. Peter Singer is simply drawing the ultimate consequence out of the theory already held by John Locke, who separated the being of a person from human being for the first time, considering personality as one particular characteristic of human beings, a characteristic that need not always be present.» Portrait of John Locke.

THE SECOND AND SECONDARY ARGUMENT IS BASED ON THE CONSEQUENCES OF NOT RESPECTING THE UNCONDITIONED DIGNITY OF THE HUMAN BEING. THE ENCYCLICAL POINTS OUT THAT AN ORDER OF LAW IN WHICH THE FREEDOM FROM BEING AT ANOTHER’S FREE DISPOSITION IS LACKING DOES NOT DESERVE THE NAME OF LAW; IT IS MERELY AN ORGANIZATION OF THE POWER OF THE STRONGER OVER THE WEAKER. 5 Cf. also the preparation of Homer’s Ulysses to hear the Sirens. His well thought out command not to be unbound, even when, as he rightly anticipates, he will ask to be, shows again the perceived distinction of personal identity and property or characteristic.

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to be both completely different and yet still themselves. The dreams, fairy-tales, and the religious imagination of humanity contain repeatedly the notion of metamorphosis. The ability of fairy-tales to imagine that someone could be first a man, then a frog, then a prince, but all the time the same identical person, points to the difference we all assume between person and properties or characteristics.5 The same presupposition is evident in Franz Kafka’s story of “Metamorphosis.” In each case, the abiding numerical identity of the human being is presupposed, which is not a function of some qualitative identity. We can imagine ourselves to be otherwise without being others. Persons are beings who are what they are in a way different from other beings. They are not simply instances of a species, but rather they relate themselves to what they are. Thus human beings can shed tears at a theatrical performance and even enjoy this pain and that anxiety; already Augustine was fascinated by this phenomenon. A person is therefore not just “something,” but “someone.” Someone is never something. To be “someone” is not a property of something, not the property of a thing or an organic being, which could already be adequately described as such and such in non-personal terms. Rather, we identify distinctly from the start either someone or something. We identify an exemplar of the species homo sapiens from the start and without consideration of any factually possessed characteristics

«The dreams, fairy-tales, and the religious imagination of humanity contain repeatedly the notion of metamorphosis. The ability of fairy-tales to imagine that someone could be first a man, then a frog, then a prince, but all the time the same identical person, points to the difference we all assume between person and properties or characteristics. The same presupposition is evident in Franz Kafka’s story of “Metamorphosis.” In each case, the abiding numerical identity of the human being is presupposed, which is not a function of some qualitative identity. We can imagine ourselves to be otherwise without being others.» First

Edition of The Metamorphosis by Franz Kaka, originally published in German on 1916.

as someone, thus, as a person. I want to give five reasons here why that is the case. First, the presuppositions of interaction between parent and child: A child first develops specifically personal characteristics, including the ability to relate to itself, when the mother (or some other human being) has already oriented herself towards the child as “someone,” that is to say, when she has treated the child as a person in encounter. No mother acts with the intention of manipulating “something” in a way that someday will make a “someone” out of it. No mother intends to “make” a person, but she turns her attention towards someone, towards a person; and by doing so, she gives this person the possibility of developing step by step the characteristics in which persons show themselves. This “turning towards” must be spontaneous and genuine. Were mothers in fact by their attentive turning towards their children only making somethings into persons, then we would have to take steps to hide this theory from parents, lest the precondition of successful “conversion” be destroyed, namely the conviction that they are in fact already dealing with persons. There is no gradual transition here from something to someone. Second, the experience of a well-founded caution against drawing conclusions from the argument e silentio in regard to the apparent lack of intentional acts: One of the characteristics of personality is the presence


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of intentional acts, different from mere propositional attitudes, from merely being set on doing something, which must be ascribed to animals as well. We are completely certain that intentional acts are present whenever we manage to enter into living communication with other beings. We do not have the same degree of assurance in deciding about the absence of such acts. Davidson has shown that we can only identify intentional acts and deeds as such, when we acknowledge a certain degree of rationality in them, that is to say, when we share in large part their views on the world and their propositional attitudes. If the views of any human being about what he or she had to do to attain a certain effect were totally false, then we could not even know which effect, if any, they had intended to reach. It might still be possible that they had acted intentionally, but if they act in a totally irrational manner, then we cannot know whether or not they had acted intentionally. It is therefore necessary to distinguish between the concepts of responsibility and accountability. These who are mentally ill might not always be accountable for their actions because they often give their deeds a meaning which we cannot recognize; and yet they could possibly still be as responsible before God for such deeds as any “rational” human being. Third, the fundamental difference between someone and something: What is the case with those too seriously impaired to still coordinate their movements or again with infants who have not yet learned to do so? Do we have any grounds for viewing and treating them as “someone,” although that can demand great sacrifices from us? The question is how do we perceive the incapacitated? As mere things? As animals of a unique type? Precisely not. We perceive them as patients, as infirm. Unavoidably, they stand in a personal relationship as someone needing help. We do not consider them merely as “something.” That is clear from the fact that we search for means to cure them, that is to say we search for means of helping their nature in a way that would allow them to assume that place in the community of persons that is reserved for them until their death. We do not know what it is like to be such a human being, but we do know that whether we shall ever have an appropriate access to what personhood means depends in large measure on the way we deal with such human beings. Humans are not simply what they are; they have their nature. And there is no reason to drop this view whenever the nature thus held becomes sufficiently deformed. We can easily try an experiment at falsification. Imagine a being, born of humans but otherwise very unlike them. Let us imagine that the behavior of this being contained no indication of identifiable practical and theoretical intentionality. Imagine further that this being would appear to us to be entirely healthy, that it moves normally

«Personality is not the result of a development but rather already the structure of a unique kind of development. It is not the structure of a development that only becomes visible as a development from an external point of view, while its own reality was embodied merely in each of its actual states. Rather it is the structure of a development, one that can recognize itself retrospectively as this development and as the subject of this development, as a unity that spans the time in which it developed. This unity is the person.» Drawing of Degas

by Manet.

in the world. It would be called an animal, equipped with all the instincts necessary for survival, recalling that the absence of such instincts is one of the decisive marks of a human being. By contrast, this being needs no outside help to survive. It is not dependent on communication with other humans; of course, it is also not capable of such. Such a being would have to appear to us in fact as a new, previously unknown species of animal, since we perceive that it is not sick. It would not be a person; and it would not belong to humankind. By contrast, the mentally infirm do belong to humankind. The infirm are those who in the universal community of persons are in the immediate sense only the recipients of physical and psychological benevolence without being capable either of acknowledging such help or of anything that normally makes such an acknowledgment possible. But in fact they give more than they receive. They receive help on the level of basic vitality. That the healthy part of humanity provides this help is itself a fact that has a fundamental significance for humanity itself. It lets the meaning of the community of persons shine forth. As we have seen, love and recognition of a human being are addressed to that being itself, not to its properties, even though we perceive what this kind of being is by its properties. In particular, without the special characteristics of the beloved, no love of friend-


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ship or eros could ever come about. There is some charm or wit, some mutual interest or shared conviction that initiates these kinds of love. And yet love, even if first initiated by such characteristics, is directed toward the person having the properties and not toward the properties themselves; otherwise, it would be said that no real love of the other person was present. The totally infirm do not possess many charming characteristics of this kind. But by our way of living with human beings who lack such characteristics, it becomes clear in an exemplary manner that, in the human community of acknowledgment, it is really the acknowledgment of selfhood that is at stake and not merely an esteem for useful or pleasant characteristics. Those who are totally debilitated challenge and bring out what is best in humankind, the authentic foundation of our self-respect. That which they thus give to humanity by their taking is more than what they receive. Fourth, the inappropriateness of the term “potential persons”: The argument of nominalism regarding small children is that they are only potentially persons; that they need first to be co-opted into the community of mutual recognition and acknowledgment in order to become persons. I have already given an answer to part of this argument: acknowledgment presupposes what is acknowledged. But beyond this something needs to be said about the notion of potential persons. There are no potential persons; persons have potencies, capabilities. Persons can develop themselves, but nothing develops itself into a person. Someone does not come to be from something. Were personality a mere state, then it could come to be by and by; but if a person is someone, who can be found in various states and dispositions, then the person is always prior to such states. The person is not the result of a change but of a generation, like Aristotle’s substances. Person is substance, because personhood is the way in which human being is. Person neither begins to exist after human being nor ceases to exist before it. Only after some time does the human being begin to say “I.” But that one, whom a human means with “I,” is not simply “one I,” i.e., some sub-case or other of egoness, but precisely the very human being who says “I.” We say, for example, “I was born then or there,” “I was begotten then or there,” even though the being that was begotten or born did not say “I” at the time. And yet we still do not say: “Then or there something was born, from which I then came to be.” I was this being. Personality is not the result of a development but rather already the structure of a unique kind of development. It is not the structure of a development that only becomes visible as a development from an external point of view, while its own reality was embodied merely in each of its actual states. Rather it is the structure of a development,

one that can recognize itself retrospectively as this development and as the subject of this development, as a unity that spans the time in which it developed. This unity is the person. There is also another reason why it is meaningless to speak of potential persons. The concept of potentiality in this context only comes up if personality is presupposed. Persons are the transcendental condition of possibilities. Ever since the Megaric school, there has been repeated criticism of the fact that we say that there are some things that are not actually. What is merely possible seems to lack precisely that precondition necessary for actualization; precisely as non-actual, it is impossible. It is possible only when all preconditions are given; but in that case it is also actual. There is only one counterexample against this line of argument: the consciousness of freedom. In fact I only have freedom to do something when it is also possible for me not to do it. The meaning of this can be defined only in a circular manner, that is to say by referring back to the consciousness of freedom. That which is at the very foundation of the conditions of possibility cannot itself be thought of as mere potentiality. Persons are, or they are not. But if they are, then they are always actual, semper in actu. They are like Aristotle’s substance, prote energeia, first actuality, which contains within itself the possibility of a plurality of further actualizations. It does indeed make sense to speak of possible and originating intentionality. Intentional acts rise up out of the stream of consciousness and take on step by step the propositional structure by which they then become distinct, atomic unities. But whenever we speak of potential intentionality, we are assuming actual persons. Fifth, the absurdity of trying to assign conditions to what we admit and want to be unconditional: The acknowledgment or recognition of personhood is the acknowledgment or recognition of an unconditional claim. The unconditioned nature of a claim would, however, be illusory, if on the one hand the claim itself were termed unconditional, while on the other hand the right to file the claim, so to speak, was made dependent upon fulfilling certain empirical preconditions that remain hypothetical. A sentence that with certainty is either true or false can just as certainly make an unconditional claim to its acceptance, if it is true; that which remains uncertain in such a case is merely whether it is in fact true. But if it is true, it has a right to be acknowledged as true. Sentences that are either true or false are of two kinds. Firstly, there are some sentences that, if true, are true by necessity. The sentences of arithmetic are of this kind. If an addition sum is true at all, it is because it follows necessarily from the basic principles of number. It can be said in advance that, if it is true, it must be true by necessity. It might be a matter of debate, especially for the beginner, whether


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some given sentence in fact belongs to this kind of necessarily true sentences. But if it is true, the student knows at the start that it will be true by necessity. The same thing does not hold for practical sentences, the other group of sentences that are either true or false. They cannot be known to be apodictic and binding without the concomitant certainty of their apodictic nature. If I am obligated to do something here and now, then it is impossible not also to be able here and now to know this: to the degree to which such knowledge is impossible, to that degree is the knowledge of the obligation weakened. If we are not yet capable of knowing this with certainty, then it also cannot yet oblige us in concreto, here and now. In situations of objective uncertainty there must be rules for dealing with such uncertainty, rules that are not equally uncertain, but rather rules that provide a greater measure of reliable orientation. Descartes’ provisional morality is a summary of such rules. The obligation to acknowledge persons unconditionally would be illusory, as already mentioned, if it were a matter of our prudential judgment about whether or not we should acknowledge that a given human being is in fact also a person, arguing, say, that the very acknowledgment of the criteria for personhood is debatable or that there is doubt whether the criteria are met in a given case. The word “unconditioned” would be degraded to a mere façon de parler. In fact it is not the case that there is, to begin with, clarity about a general rule, held with certainty, that persons must be unconditionally respected, and that only then deduced from this general certainty does it come to this or that less certain, posterior application of the rule to individual cases, which as individual could always be called into doubt. The unconditional respect for human beings is not more certain on the general than on the concrete level. The claim of persons to unconditional respect is rather perceived primarily and fundamentally as a claim that comes from a particular person or from several particular persons. The very claim is perceived in reflection as unconditional, only when the conviction is in fact already given that this is a case of such unconditional being. The unconditioned nature of the sentence of which Lévinas speaks, “You will not kill me,” goes forth in each case from the face of a particular, individual human being. That I may not kill this or that human being is even more certain than that I may kill no one at all. Person is not the concept of species but rather that way by which individuals of the species “human” are. They are in such a way that each of those existents in that community of persons we call “humanity” holds a unique place, irreproducible and incapable of substitution. Only as holding such a place are they perceived as persons by

someone who also occupies such a place. To make the recognition of such a place depend upon the prior realization of certain qualitative conditions would be to have already destroyed the unconditional character of the claim at its very root. Whoever lays claim to this place asserts this claim as a born, not an elected, member of humanity. Personal rights are not granted or permitted, but rather they are claimed by everyone with equal right. “By everyone” means at least by every human being. The idea of unconditional rights enjoyed only after conditions for approval by others are fulfilled is a self-contradiction. Personal rights are only unconditional rights, if they are not made to depend upon the fulfillment of some qualitative condition, about which others decide who are already acknowledged members of the community of rights and law. Humanity cannot be a community of law in the sense of a “closed shop”; were it otherwise, then even the axiom pacta sunt servando would be valid only in regard to those whom the majority had agreed to acknowledge as subjects of rights. There can be, and there may be, but one single criterion for personality: that of biologically belonging to the human race. Personal rights are what is meant by their concept only if they mean the same thing as human rights. And if someday we should discover other natural species in the universe, whose adult individuals often possess rationality and self-consciousness, then we would also have to acknowledge all such creatures of this species as persons as well.


Translated by Richard Schenk, O.P.

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«The university is a privileged place, a precious institution, and it is a great honor to teach in this institution: it is an institution that matters greatly, but cut off from its own intellectual and historical roots, from normative philosophical and theological traditions, it has largely forgotten it actually matters. It matters because of the truth and because the human being is made for the truth. That is the surpassing dignity of the human being in which the dignity of the university participates. To ask secular reason’s dismissive question, “What is truth?” is to lose104 the dignity of the human being as well as the dignity of the university.»


University, Education, and the Unity of K nowledge BY REINHARD HÜTTER


et me get up front to the central claim of my article1: What is increasingly missing from the late-modern research university and the kind of training it offers is what I shall call the university’s third dimension. For the American Association of Universities (AAU) this third dimension seems to have disappeared from the university. The first two dimensions of the late modern university constitute its “sharpness” as problemsolving institution: to intricate questions and to solve complex problems. The late modern university accomplishes this task by way of ever more specialized research and by way of a concomitant training of undergraduate and graduate students in the kind of expert knowledge that makes them competent problem-solvers. The university’s third dimension—constitutive of the classical university—comprises, first, scholē (in English “leisure”) that is, the structured practice of intellectual contemplation and reflection, and, second, paideia, that is, the integral formation of the intellectual virtues in conjunction with the development of the moral virtues. A university that lacks this third dimension might well be able to develop remarkable research, but, I think, will eventually suffer from a suffocating intellectual spiritual flatness that in the long run will prove detrimental to the university as such. In order to make good on this claim I will proceed through three steps. In the first step, I will offer a snapshot of the late-modern research university and highlight three of its noteworthy features: first, the remarkable ambivalence in contemporary academic thought pertaining to reason’s reliability and range, and, ultimately, to reason’s capacity for truth; second, the late-modern university’s pervasive embrace of the means of quantification or metrics for purposes of assessment and management (into which university administration seems to have largely morphed); and third, its embrace of the allegedly neutral framework of “secular reason” HUMANITAS Nº 5 pp. 104 - 125

The university’s third dimension, its depth dimension, refers to what has been at one time essential to the university qua university, that is, the pursuit of larger, comprehensive and integrating questions of truth and meaning— questions, I dare say, of metaphysics and morals.

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What is to be observed at the present moment regarding this third dimension are signs of a new emerging disenchantment with secular reason as the university’s governing principle, a disenchantment discernible as it seems first and foremost among some of the postmodern avant-gardes of the late-modern research university.

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for its internal and external communication. These features belong essentially to what I regard as the university’s first and second dimension that together constitute the cutting edge, the utilitarian character of a highly complex problem-solving machine. The university’s third dimension, its depth dimension, refers to what has been at one time essential to the university qua university, that is, the pursuit of larger, comprehensive and integrating questions of truth and meaning—questions, I dare say, of metaphysics and morals. What is to be observed at the present moment regarding this third dimension are signs of a new emerging disenchantment with secular reason as the university’s governing principle, a disenchantment discernible as it seems first and foremost among some of the postmodern avant-gardes of the late-modern research university. In a second step, I shall consider a brief philosophical observation and an equally brief theological reminder about the university’s third dimension. In a concluding third step I will conclude that leisure and paideia are the two practices that keep the soul of the university alive and that will assure that the university qua university will continue to matter even under the specter of a comprehensive functionalization of the late-modern university—especially after the disenchantment of secular reason. Like all thought, the normative perspectives that inform my critique of the late-modern research university and the concomitant university education come from somewhere. The perspective that informs the normative understanding of the university pursued here has its roots in the ancient paideia that came to flourish in the remarkable and still pertinent work of Thomas Aquinas. Obviously, this idea of university does not form the matrix on which the late-modern universities are built. However, I still hold as a governing principle for the subsequent reflections that a vision like the following is required as a critical normative standard in order to help us see at which point the “university” is in danger of becoming an equivocation (that is, a branding fraud). To quote Alasdair MacIntyre from his recent God, Philosophy, Universities: A Selective of the Catholic Philosophical Tradition: “The ends of education… can be correctly developed only with reference to the final end of human beings and the ordering of the curriculum has to be an ordering to that final end. We are able to understand what the university should be, only if we understand what the

«Newman is right: liberal education is meant not for the cultivation of the saint, but for the cultivation of the intellect; the university is meant for the excellence that characterizes the saint. The gentleman Newman invokes should, I think, be understood as an intellectually well-formed socially competent person. But here I think Newman is granting a point tacitly that at other instances in his work he was willing to support explicitly: that paideia, the formation of character, is integral to a university education. For, arguably, the formation of intellectual virtues occurs best in conjunction with the formation of character.»

university is. But while this thought was crucial for Aquinas’s conception of the university, it was remarkable uninfluential in determining how universities in fact developed.”2 Describing and understanding the de facto development of universities in historical, sociological, and political terms is one kind of thing. Making sense of the university qua university on intellectual terms is another thing. I am pursuing only the latter here, and the presupposition of my talk is that the ideal reflected in Aquinas’s thought, and echoed to some degree under considerable different conditions in John Henry Newman’s 1852 Dublin lectures on The Scope and Nature of University Education, is far from obsolete. On the contrary, this ideal constitutes the corrective reminder and salutary challenge and is as such a program, I submit, superior to the Enlightenment model of the university as a place of advanced training in useful competencies, superior well to the Berlin-type and the Weberian version of the late-modern research university. For all these later models share the deficiencies of modernity; that is, they regard the university’s third dimension as dispensable and, if maintained, as at best a supererogatory concession to a luxury admitted for purely sentimental reasons, namely as one expedient way to honor the university’s pre-modern roots. 2

The university’s third dimension— constitutive of the classical university— comprises, first, scholē (in English “leisure”) that is, the structured practice of intellectual contemplation and reflection, and, second, paideia, that is, the integral formation of the intellectual virtues in conjunction with the development of the moral virtues. (…)

Alasdair MacIntyre, God, Philosophy, Universities: A Selective History of the Catholic Philosophical Tradition, Lanham, MD, Rowan and Littlefield, 2009, 95.

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ÂŤFor late modernity, that is, a thoroughly secularized and increasingly fragmented modernity, has now lost its optimistic ĂŠlan and instead has become tired and cynical. In the agnostic world of irresistibly corruptible, interminably quarrelling, and tirelessly consuming bodies, hence a world in which the greatest dangers are disease, litigation, and the inability to consume, the hierarchy of university sciences stands in service of the avoidance of these evils: at the top stands the medical school supported by all the biomedical sciences, followed by the law school and the business school supported by their respective auxiliary sciences, first and foremost computer science and mathematics, but also any useful remnants of the liberal arts.Âť

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Let me expand upon what I mean by the third dimension. In 2006, as an octogenarian, the philosopher Benedict Ashley published a simply remarkable book, a model of interdisciplinary rigor and comprehensiveness, The Way toward Wisdom: An Interdisciplinary and Intercultural Introduction to Metaphysics. Let me use his words to amplify this idea of the university’s third, integrative dimension. The very term “uni-versity” means many-lookingtoward-one, and is related to the term “universe,” the whole of reality. Thus, the name no longer seems appropriate to such a fragmented modern institution whose unity is provided only by a financial administration and perhaps a sports team. The fragmented academy is, of course, the result of the energetic exploration of all kinds of knowledge, but how can it meet the fundamental yearning for wisdom on which each culture is based?3

The search for wisdom characterizes the university’s third dimension and realizes the university qua university in a strict and proper sense. Hence, the university’s third dimension functions as critical norm that puts into stark relief strong tendencies—not recent in the origin, but recently gaining remarkable momentum—to reduce the university to a polytechnicum with a largely functionalized propaedeutic liberal arts appendix, this polytechnicum being largely an accidental agglomeration of advanced research competencies gathered in one facility for the sake of extrinsic and contingent convenience. If this trend should come to its logical term, if indeed each of these advanced research competencies could be located elsewhere, that is, be directly linked to hospitals, to biochemical and computers companies, or to this or that branch of the military-industrial complex, without any lost, then the university in any substantive sense would have disappeared; and to still call what remains a university would be simply an equivocation, undoubtedly useful for reasons of branding and marketing, but hardly for reasons of substance.


(…) A university that lacks this third dimension might well be able to develop remarkable research, but, will eventually suffer from a suffocating intellectual spiritual flatness that in the long run will prove detrimental to the university as such.

Benedict Ashley, The Way Toward Wisdom: An Interdisciplinary and Intercultural Introduction to Metaphysics, Notre Dame, IN, University of Notre Dame Press, 2006, 20.

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A Snapshot of the Late-Modern Research University

Leisure and paideia are the two practices that keep the soul of the university alive and that will assure that the university qua university will continue to matter even under the specter of a comprehensive functionalization of the latemodern university—especially after the disenchantment of secular reason.

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1. It is hard to imagine a gulf deeper than the one that currently exists between those academics who regard reason in terms of utmost triumph and those who regard it in terms of utmost despair. Mathematically disciplined and technologically executed, human reason has transformed the globe in unprecedented ways. The academic disciplines based on reason’s mathematical and technological acumen hold a robust trust—if not faith—in reason’s capacity to grasp reality and, precisely because of this grasp, successfully to conform the world to human interest and needs. Paradoxically, we can register a simultaneous widespread sense of despair about reason’s superior status and role. Instead of sovereignly guiding human affairs to their clear, defined, and well-considered ends, reason seems to be a little more than a coping mechanism or a regulative fiction driven and directed by instincts and desires it can hardly perceive, much less rule. The academic disciplines that traditionally draw upon reason’s reflective, integrative, and directive capacities— and exercised by humanity in the act of understanding and interpreting both world and self—seem to have fallen into a state of internal disarray while finding themselves exiled into what by all accounts seems to be a state of permanent marginalization within the late-modern research university. Reason triumphing in the form of instrumental rationality has produced its own demise as famously analyzed in Max Horkheimer and Theodore Adorno’s Dialectic of Enlightenment. This arguable state of affairs is obviously not just an ivorytower phenomenon, remote from and largely irrelevant to human society at large. Rather, the simultaneous triumph of and despair about reason mirrors late-modern society as such: we encounter breathtaking developments in artificial intelligence and biotechnology together with atmospheric epistemological skepticism and ontological nihilism that is as pervasive and erosive as it is elusive. Instrumental rationality and ontological nihilism seem to be two sides of the same coin. What is eclipsed in between is this question of truth. Because reason seems to have become incapable of attaining truth, it has to assert itself instead in the gigantomaniac demonstration and celebration of its instrumental effectiveness, its will to power. The prophet of

ÂŤInstrumental rationality and ontological nihilism seem to be two sides of the same coin. What is eclipsed in between is this question of truth. Because reason seems to have become incapable of attaining truth, it has to assert itself instead in the gigantomaniac demonstration and celebration of its instrumental effectiveness, its will to power. The prophet of this dynamic has been Friedrich Nietzsche. While Nietzsche was greatly disillusioned with the nineteenth century Berlin-style university, the late-modern, secular research university with its strong pragmatic and anti-metaphysical bent is more profoundly committed to some Nietzschean tenets that it seems to be aware.Âť Edward Hooper, Night Shadow, 1921.

this dynamic has been a German university professor of the nineteenth century, one who retired very early in his career from the university: Friedrich Nietzsche. While Nietzsche was greatly disillusioned with the nineteenth century Berlin-style university, the late-modern, secular research university with its strong pragmatic and anti-metaphysical bent is more pro-

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foundly committed to some Nietzschean tenets that it seems to be aware. Let me, for just one example, cite aphorism 480 from The Will to Power:

To quote Alasdair MacIntyre: “The ends of education… can be correctly developed only with reference to the final end of human beings and the ordering of the curriculum has to be an ordering to that final end. We are able to understand what the university should be, only if we understand what the university is. But while this thought was crucial for Aquinas’s conception of the university, it was remarkable uninfluential in determining how universities in fact developed.”

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There exists neither “spirit,” nor reason, nor thinking, nor consciousness, nor soul, nor will, nor truth: all are fictions that are of no use. There is no question of the “subject and the object,” but of a particular species of animal that can prosper only through a certain relative rightness; above all, regularity of its perceptions (so that it can accumulate experience). Knowledge works as a tool of power. Hence it is plain that it increases with every increase of power. The meaning of “knowledge”: here, as in the case of “good” and “beautiful,” the concept is to be regarded in a strict and narrow anthropocentric and biological sense. In order for a particular species to maintain itself and increase its power, its conception of reality must comprehend enough of the calculable and constant for it to base a scheme of behavior on it. The utility of preservation—not some abstract-theoretical need not to be decided—stands as the motive behind the development of the organs of knowledge—they develop in such a way that their observations suffice for our preservation. In other words measure of the desire for knowledge depends upon the measure to which the will to power grows in a species: a species grasps a certain amount of reality in order become master of it in order to press it into service.

What would the kind of university look like in which Nietzsche’s understanding of the human being took hold, at least tacitly, of its self-understanding? This brings me to another segment of snapshot. 2. A university in which Nietzsche’s understanding of human being took hold would be, to say the least, profoundly ambivalent about itself—and remember, the best strategies to cope with ambivalence in matters of substance and teleology is quantification of metrics, instrumentalization, and management. It would also be a place in which philosophy would share an unequivocally marginal position with the other humanities, in which what once were the “liberal arts” would be characterized by curricular fragmentation and even disarray, and a place in which the biotechnological science would display an almost

«In the speech for Rome´s La Sapienza University, Benedict pointed to the self-deception of secular reason. “If our culture seeks only to build itself on the basis of the circle of its own argumentation and what convinces it on the time, and if—anxious to preserve its secularism—it detaches itself from its life-giving roots, then it will fall apart and disintegrate.” Like late-modern society, the late-modern research university lives from intellectual and moral sources it cannot account for, let alone produce. The university’s third dimension, however, seems to depend precisely on such intellectual and moral sources.»

uncontrollable—should I say cancerous? —growth. Such a “university” —I put the word into quotation marks—would be first and foremost a highly sophisticated problem-solving machine at the service of those who are able and willing to pay for its service. In different, that is, more positive Benthamian terms: the late-modern research universities as they can be found across the globe are by and large institutions geared first and foremost to producing knowledge by way of highly specialized research (primarily in the natural and medical sciences), knowledge that is meant to serve interests that almost exclusively arise from the practical and technical needs and demand of the kinds of societies in which these universities are located. In a secondary way, these universities are geared to communicate this knowledge in order to produce specific competencies in their graduates. The undergraduate’s education—most lately blatant in Europe’s new Bologna system—is increasingly functionalized toward the acquisition of marketable skills and competencies. Added to these clearly defined, specialized competencies comes to stand an equally well defined set of so-called “Rahmen-Kompetenzen,” framework competencies. For it must be ensured that future Einsteins, Hawkings, Wittgensteins, Habermases and Auerbachs know how to lead effective small groups discussions, can organize

All the later models, as the Berlin-type and the Weberian version of the late-modern research university, share the deficiencies of modernity; that is, they regard the university’s third dimension as dispensable and, if maintained, as at best a supererogatory concession to a luxury admitted for purely sentimental reasons, namely as one expedient way to honor the university’s premodern roots.

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laboratory teams, and prepare compelling Power-Point presentations. It was none other than Newman, who in his lectures on The scope and nature of the university—lectures more relevant than ever, I dare say—more than 150 years ago anticipates the specter of the late-modern research university. He discerns its seed in the scientific method of another of its founder fathers—Francis Bacon.

The university’s third dimension functions as critical norm that puts into stark relief strong tendencies— not recent in the origin, but recently gaining remarkable momentum—to reduce the university to a polytechnicum with a largely functionalized propaedeutic liberal arts appendix, this polytechnicum being largely an accidental agglomeration of advanced research competencies gathered in one facility for the sake of extrinsic and contingent convenience.

I cannot deny [Bacon] has abundantly achieved what he proposed. His is simply a Method whereby bodily discomforts and temporal wants are to be most effectually removed from the greatest number; and already, before it has shown any signs of exhaustion, the gifts of nature, in their most artificial shapes and luxurious profusion and diversity, from all quarters of the earth, are, it is undeniable, by its means brought even to our doors and we rejoice in them.4

But in the course of 150 years since Newman’s rather friendly characterization of the Baconian university, things have become considerably graver. For late modernity, that is, a thoroughly secularized and increasingly fragmented modernity, has now lost its optimistic élan and instead has become tired and cynical. In the agnostic world of irresistibly corruptible, interminably quarrelling, and tirelessly consuming bodies, hence a world in which the greatest dangers are disease, litigation, and the inability to consume, the hierarchy of university sciences stands in service of the avoidance of these evils: at the top stands the medical school supported by all the biomedical sciences, followed by the law school and the business school supported by their respective auxiliary sciences, first and foremost computer science and mathematics, but also any useful remnants of the liberal arts. And since it has been discovered that allegedly religious practice might contribute health and longevity, the gods are making a come-back, of sorts—now as an appendix to the medical school! It is in light of these recent developments that the warning of Pope Benedict XVI—himself a long-time university professor profoundly committed to this unique institution of higher learning–—has an especially salient and sobering ring. The 4

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John Henry Newman, The Idea of a University, Discourse V, 8, http://www.newmanreader.org.

following is part of a speech that the Pope prepared in January of 2008 for the Roman university La Sapienza (once the Pope’s own university in Rome, now a secular Roman university), a speech that, however, was never delivered because at the last moment the university administration withdrew the invitation. Here is the pertinent passage, however: The danger for the western world—to speak only of this— is that today, precisely because of the greatness of his knowledge and power, man will fail to face up the question of the truth. This would mean at the same time that reason would ultimately bow to the pressure of interests and attraction of utility, constrained to recognize this as the ultimate criterion. To put it from the point of view of the structure of the university: there is a danger that philosophy, no longer considering itself capable of its true task, will degenerate into positivism; and that theology, with its message addressed to the reason, will be limited to the private sphere of a more or less numerous group. Yet if reason out of concern for its alleged purity, becomes deaf to the great message that comes to it from Christian faith and wisdom, then it withers like a tree whose roots can no longer reach the water that gives life. It loses the courage for truth and thus becomes not greater but smaller.5

What the Pope indicts here is the unexamined negative framework of a secular reason— uncritically reductive and, in the end, unscientific because it is unhistorical and antihermeneutical—as the everyday default working paradigm for the self-understanding of the university qua university. It is interesting, to say the least, that the Pope’s concern is echoed in unexpected and surprising ways among those of the postmodern avant-garde who have come to realize that “secular reason” is a figment unable to account for itself let alone the comprehensive nature of the university as universitas. Now to the final segment of my snapshot of the late-modern research university.

We encounter breathtaking developments in artificial intelligence and biotechnology together with atmospheric epistemological skepticism and ontological nihilism that is as pervasive and erosive as it is elusive. (…)

3. Stanley Fish, once upon a time chair of the English department at Duke and now a professor of humanities and law in Florida International University in Miami, recently introduced 5

Benedict XVI, Lecture by the Holy Father Benedict XVI at the University of Rome “La Sapienza,” http://www.vatican.va.

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and discussed a noteworthy book by University of San Diego Warren Distinguished Professor of Law Steven D. Smith, The Disenchantment of Secular Discourse. Stanley Fish and Steven Smith attempt to break open from the inside what Charles Taylor once aptly called “the citadel of modern secular reason.” In his book Smith argues that “there are no secular reason… of the kind that could justify a decision to take one course of action rather than another.” Consider Fish’s apt summary of Smith’s argument:

(…) Instrumental rationality and ontological nihilism seem to be two sides of the same coin. What is eclipsed in between is this question of truth. Because reason seems to have become incapable of attaining truth, it has to assert itself instead in the gigantomaniac demonstration and celebration of its instrumental effectiveness, its will to power.

Secular reason can’t do its own self-assigned job—of describing the world in ways that allow us to move forward in our projects—without importing, but not acknowledging, the very perspectives it pushes away in disdain. While secular discourse, in the form of statistical analyses, controlled experiments, and rational decisions-trees can yield banks of data that can then be subdivided and refined in more ways than we can count, it cannot tell us what data means or what to do with it. No matter how much information you pile up and how sophisticated are the analytical operations you perform, you will never get one millimeter closer to the moment when you can move from the piled-up information to some lesson or imperative it points to.6

Now, in a certain way, this is not surprising under the considerations of the modern dismissal of ontological and moral teleology. This profound incapability is in fact just what we should expect from secular reason and a university committed to it. But there is a deeper and more unsettling problem—the self-deception of secular reason about its own “sleight of hand.” Consider again Fish on Smith’s book: Nevertheless, Smith observes, the self-impoverished discourse of secular reason does in fact produce judgments, formulates and defends agendas, and speaks in a normative vocabulary. How does it manage? By “smuggling,” Smith answers. “The secular vocabulary within which public discourse is constrained today is insufficient to convey our full set of normative convictions and commitments. We manage to debate normative matters anyway—but only by smuggling in notions that are formally inadmissible, and hence 6

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Stanley Fish, “Are There Any Secular Reasons?” http://opinator.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/02/22/are-there-secular-reasons/?/.

that cannot be openly acknowledged or adverted to.” The notions we must smuggle in, according to Smith, include “notions about purposive cosmos, or a teleological nature stocked with Aristotelian ‘final causes’ or ‘providential design,’” all banished from secular discourse they stipulate truth and value in advance rather than waiting for them to be revealed by the outcomes of rational calculation. But if secular discourse needs notions like these to have a direction—to even get started—“we have little choice except to smuggle [them] into the conversations—to introduce them incognito under some sort of secular disguise.”7

Fish’s analysis of Smith’s argument rings true. For every university reflects unavoidably to at least some degree the culture it arises from and operates in. The late-modern research university has to a large degree embraced the assumption of secular reason and is committed to serving an allegedly shared, non-partisan discourse of “public reason,” with its many unquestionable and indeed staggering accomplishments. This, however, is an illusion and, a disastrous one at that. For inside the self-imposed limitations of “secular reason” the university qua university becomes unintelligible to itself. All it can be for “secular reason” is a convenient agglomeration of facilities and competencies proximate to each other, branded and marketed under one single name, but each receiving its justification in light of distinct and largely incommensurable needs from vastly varied segments of advanced, diversified, and technologically driven society. “Secular reason” has intentionally cut itself off from the intellectual and moral sources that would allow it to acknowledge and advance the overarching teleology that gives intrinsic value to the university as such: the mind being ordered to truth and the corresponding search for truth and the ordering or these truths—which is the task of wisdom. In the same speech for Rome´s La Sapienza University, Benedict pointed to the self-deception of secular reason. “If our culture seeks only to build itself on the basis of the circle of its own argumentation and what convinces it on the time, and if—anxious to preserve its secularism—it detaches itself from its life-giving roots, then it will fall apart and disintegrate.”8 Like late-modern society, the late-modern research university lives from intellectual and moral sources it cannot account for, 7 8

For inside the selfimposed limitations of “secular reason” the university qua university becomes unintelligible to itself. All it can be for “secular reason” is a convenient agglomeration of facilities and competencies proximate to each other, branded and marketed under one single name, but each receiving its justification in light of distinct and largely incommensurable needs from vastly varied segments of advanced, diversified, and technologically driven society. (…)

Ibid. Benedict XVI, “La Sapeinza,” http://www.vatican.va.

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«In Leisure: The Basis of Culture, the German philosopher Joseph Pieper reminds us of this all-important correlation: Strictly speaking, a claim for academic freedom can only exist when the “academic” itself is realized in a “philosophical” way. And this is historically the reason: academic freedom has been lost, exactly to the extent that the philosophical character of academic study has been lost, or, to put it another way, to the extent that the totalitarian demands of the working world have conquered the realm of the university. Here is where the metaphysical roots of the problem lie: the “politicization” is only a symptom and consequence. And indeed, it must be admitted here that this is nothing other than the fruit… of philosophy itself, of modern philosophy!»

let alone produce. The university’s third dimension, however, seems to depend precisely on such intellectual and moral sources. (…) “Secular reason” has intentionally cut itself off from the intellectual and moral sources that would allow it to acknowledge and advance the overarching teleology that gives intrinsic value to the university as such: the mind being ordered to truth and the corresponding search for truth and the ordering or these truths—which is the task of wisdom.

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What Is the University’s “Third Dimension” About? The third dimension is the unifying dimension that offers an integrative and ordered view of the first two dimensions and hence enables coherence, order, and evaluation—and pedagogically paideia. It is the dimension of “meta-science,” of a unifying and integrating inquiry that transcends each particular science and the acquiring of specific competencies. It is an inquiry that attends to the whole, to the order and coherence of all science, to its governing principles, and hence to the university as a self-conscious and coherent search for truth and wisdom, forming an ellipsis around two foci: the universe and the human being. The third dimension, the depth-dimension, offers internal coherence to a university education and realizes the university in a strong and proper sense. Whatever makes a university sill a somewhat, even marginally, coherent reality is parasitical on this third, depth dimension. Inasmuch as the late-modern research university embraces “secular reason” as its dominant mode of self-understanding and of meditation, it closes itself off from this third dimension and restricts itself to

the two-dimensional plane of the production of knowledge. I would like to highlight two features of this third dimension by way of a philosophical observation and a theological reminder.

A philosophical observation First the philosophical observation that brings me again to Fish’s interpretation of Smith’s The Disenchantment of Secular Discourse: Smith does not claim to be saying something wholly new. He cites David’s Hume declaration that by itself “reason is incompetent to answer any fundamental question,” and Alasdair MacIntyre’s description in After Virtue of modern secular discourse as consisting “of the now incoherent fragments of a kind of reasoning that make sense on older metaphysical assumptions.” And he might have added Augustine’s observation in De Trinitate that the entailment of reason cannot unfold in the absence of a substantive proposition that it did not and could not generate.9 In this pregnant passage, as well as elsewhere in his essay, Fish seems to suggest the return of metaphysics by way of the resurgence of two ultimately irrepressible realities: teleology and transcendence of human reason. What is the gesturing toward? Instead of entering a protracted discussion of these deep matters, let me take a shortcut by offering two citations of placeholders. First, MacIntyre says in God, Philosophy, Universities that “the ends of education… can correctly develop only with reference to the final end of human beings and the ordering of the curriculum has to be an ordering to that final end. We are able to understand what the university should be only if we understand what the universe is.”10 In short, if the university is to be coherently a university in the full sense of the term, it needs to embark upon inquiries that depend upon principles that “secular reason” can neither produce nor account for. What is even more important to realize is that, arguably, the full recovery of meta-scientific inquiry is correlated to an equally full recovery of genuine academic freedom. In Leisure: The Basis of Culture, the German philosopher Joseph Pieper reminds us of this all-important correlation:

True academic freedom is a freedom that is realized fully in the university’s third dimension, a dimension that is accessible from each university discipline. (...)

9 Fish, “Secular Reason?” 10 MacIntyre, God, Philosophy, Universities, 95.

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Strictly speaking, a claim for academic freedom can only exist when the “academic” itself is realized in a “philosophical” way. And this is historically the reason: academic freedom has been lost, exactly to the extent that the philosophical character of academic study has been lost, or, to put it another way, to the extent that the totalitarian demands of the working world have conquered the realm of the university. Here is where the metaphysical roots of the problem lie: the “politicization” is only a symptom and consequence. And indeed, it must be admitted here that this is nothing other than the fruit… of philosophy itself, of modern philosophy!11

(...) The integrating and ordering function of the third dimension is not extrinsically imposed upon the various academic disciplines but arises from what Pieper calls the “philosophical” character of academic study per se by way of which each discipline transcends itself in the very pursuit of its distinct subject matter.

Instead of modern philosophy, Pieper could as well have said “secular reason.” His point is that true academic freedom is a freedom that is realized fully in the university’s third dimension, a dimension that is accessible from each university discipline. Differently put, the integrating and ordering function of the third dimension is not extrinsically imposed upon the various academic disciplines but arises from what Pieper calls the “philosophical” character of academic study per se by way of which each discipline transcends itself in the very pursuit of its distinct subject matter.

The theological reminder Now, from the philosophical observation to the theological reminder. The theological reminder is simply this: the university’s third dimension flourishes to the fullest if enlightened from above. As long as God is the end of the pursuit of wisdom and theology, natural and revealed, is the capstone of the university’s disciplines, then the third dimension will never collapse, and the university will remain universitas in the full sense of the term. It was this theological reminder that has kept pre-modern Christian universities aware of the fact that the primordial human estrangement from God is a fundamental estrangement that left a wound in the human being, a wound that affected the will most strongly of all the human faculties. In light of the knowledge that the third dimension yields, Newman in his typically succinct way formulates a 11 Joseph Pieper, Leisure: The Basis of Culture, San Francisco, Ignatius Press, 2009, 75.

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serious reservation that indicates the limitation of even the best kind of university education one can hope for, the best kind yielded by a university whose third dimension is in full bloom, so to speak. I cite again from his 1852 Dublin lectures, The Scope and Nature of University Education: Knowledge is one thing, virtue is another; good sense is not conscience, refinement is not humility, nor is largeness and justness of view faith. Philosophy, however enlightened, however profound, gives no command over the passions, no influential motives, no vivifying principles. Liberal education makes not the Christian, not the Catholic, but the gentleman… Quarry the great rock with razors, or moor the vessel with a thread of silk; then may you hope with such keen and delicate instruments as human knowledge and human reason to contend against those giants, the passion and the pride of man… Liberal education, viewed in itself, is simply the cultivation of the intellect, as such, and its object is nothing more or less than intellectual excellence.12

On one level, the most fundamental one from a theological point of view, Newman is right: liberal education is meant not for the cultivation of the saint, but for the cultivation of the intellect; the university is meant for the excellence that characterizes the saint. The gentleman Newman invokes should, I think, be understood as an intellectually well-formed socially competent person. But here I think Newman is granting a point tacitly that at other instances in his work he was willing to support explicitly: that paideia, the formation of character, is integral to a university education. For, arguably, the formation of intellectual virtues occurs best in conjunction with the formation of character; differently put: a deficient or absent character formation complicates or even obstructs the proper formation of the intellectual virtues. Because the virtues of the mind—development of which is integral to the university’s third dimension—cannot be divorced from the formation of character, that is the formation in the moral virtues, we can now specify more clearly the twofold way in which the university matters, especially after the disenchantment of secular reason. This brings me to the final part of my article.

The theological reminder is simply this: the university’s third dimension flourishes to the fullest if enlightened from above. As long as God is the end of the pursuit of wisdom and theology, natural and revealed, is the capstone of the university’s disciplines, then the third dimension will never collapse, and the university will remain universitas in the full sense of the term.

12 Newman, Idea, Discourse V, 9.

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What It Means to Reclaim the University’s Third Dimension: Leisure, Paideia, and Genuine Academic Freedom

Two practices are essential for its full development and flourishing: leisure or school and paideia. The practice of leisure has as its intrinsic end the integration of the sciences, the contemplation of the whole, in short, the search of wisdom. The practice of leisure is the only practice that allows something like the self-reflexivity of the university as university.

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I do not indulge in the illusion that one can save the university in one sabbatical, let alone in the course of a single article. But one can begin to think in different ways about different things and ask different questions. The university is a privileged place, a precious institution, and it is a great honor to teach in this institution: it is an institution that matters greatly, but cut off from its own intellectual and historical roots, from normative philosophical and theological traditions, it has largely forgotten it actually matters. It matters because of the truth and because the human being is made for the truth. That is the surpassing dignity of the human being in which the dignity of the university participates. To ask secular reason’s dismissive question, “What is truth?” is to lose the dignity of the human being as well as the dignity of the university. What would it mean to recover this dignity in full? As I mentioned in my introduction, two practices are essential for its full development and flourishing: leisure or school and paideia. The practice of leisure has as its intrinsic end the integration of the sciences, the contemplation of the whole, in short, the search of wisdom. The practice of leisure is the only practice that allows something like the self-reflexivity of the university as university. (The integration thus brought is, however, radically different from the kind of interdisciplinarity that is meant to produce just another kind of data, another kind of useful knowledge to be applied here or there). Second, the practice of paideia aims at an integral human formation of character, the formation of the intellectual virtues in conjunction of the moral virtues. There is no paideia without leisure, and true leisure flourishes in paideia. Let me turn to paideia first and begin with an unlikely voice of concern. In his 2004 novel, I Am Charlotte Simons, Tom Wolfe offers a trenchant exposé of contemporary American university life that only seems to confirm Newman’s position about contending against “the passion and the pride of man.” While describing the drug-abuse, alcoholism, and sexual promiscuity that characterize late-modern secular American college and university life, Wolfe clearly also seems to expect more from colleges and universities than simply to mimic the cultural

and moral destitution of the wider society. In a conversation with an interviewer, Wolfe said that he deplored the fact that “with a few exceptions, universities have totally abandoned the idea of strengthening character.”13 Are Wolfe’s expectations of the idea of the late-modern university hopelessly naïve, outmoded, and ultimately utopian or might they reflect some understanding of the connection between character formation and the pursuit of wisdom? It is noteworthy and should give those who care about these matters pause that on this very point the Thomistic students of Aristotle and the Augustinian students of Plato are in full agreement, and that, therefore, Benedict XVI shares Tom Wolfe’s expectation of character formation to be an integral component of a university education that serves that name. On September 27, 2009, in his address to representatives of the members of the academic community of the ancient Charles University in Prague, Benedict states: “From the time of Plato, education has been not merely the accumulation of knowledge and skills, but paideia, human formation in the treasures of an intellectual tradition directed to virtuous life… The idea of an integrated education, based on the unity of knowledge grounded in truth, must be regained.”14 How this paideia is exactly to be understood needs further development. What seems obvious is that in order to engage in the pursuit of the unity of knowledge— wisdom—one must be formed in those intellectual virtues requisite for such pursuit to be successful. Less obvious is the correlation between the formation of the intellectual virtues and the formation of the moral virtues. In Aquinas’s doctrine of the cardinal virtues, prudence holds a principal position, for it is the one intellectual virtue that cannot be without moral virtue.15 Hence, like Newman, Aquinas can also account for the brilliant scoundrel. For prudence does not belong to those intellectual virtues that perfect the speculative intellect for the consideration of truth. But, unlike Newman, classical paideia and also Thomas expect from an university education more than the perfection of the strictly intellectual virtues; for the end of a proper liberal arts education is the pursuit of wisdom. And the pursuit of wisdom entails not only the refinement of habits of thought but also the habits of action; both pertain to

The practice of paideia aims at an integral human formation of character, the formation of the intellectual virtues in conjunction of the moral virtues. There is no paideia without leisure, and true leisure flourishes in paideia.

13 Tom Wolfe, quoted in Mary Ann Glendon, “Off at College,” First Things 150 (February 2005), 41. 14 Benedict XVI, Meeting with Members of the Academic Community, Address of the Holy Father, Vladislaw Hall in the Prague Castle, September 27, 2009. 15 Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologiae I, q. 58, a. 5.

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In In his address to representatives of the members of the academic community of the ancient Charles University in Prague, Benedict XVI states: “From the time of Plato, education has been not merely the accumulation of knowledge and skills, but paideia, human formation in the treasures of an intellectual tradition directed to virtuous life (… )

the end of the human being. It is for this reason that paideia is integral to the pursuit of wisdom. And since prudence is the intellectual virtue that perfects reason pertaining to things to be done,16 the practice of paideia entails first and foremost the formation of prudence. Paideia entails also the formation of other virtues such as truthfulness, studiousness, persistence, humility, collegiality— ordered and structured by temperance, that is, self-restraint, as well as by courage and justice. But what correlates paideia to the other central practice, leisure, is indeed prudence. Here we have the virtue that integrates both core practices of the university’s third dimension into the concrete life of each student—and forms the matter, of each professor, too. Which brings us finally to the practice of leisure or scholē— the practice of a non-productive productivity. Differently put, the productivity in which leisure reaches its term—contemplation—remains essentially intrinsic to the practice of leisure. It cannot be functionalized for some extrinsic purpose. As such, leisure is the soul, the life principle of the university. Where scholē is gone, and with contemplation, meta-scientific is also lacking. In God, Philosophy, Universities, MacIntyre puts the matter most succinctly. To whom… in such a university falls the task of integrating the various disciplines, of considering the bearing of each on the others, of the nature and order of things? The answer is “No one,” but even this answer is misleading. For there is no sense in the contemporary American University that there is such a task, that something that matters is being left undone. And so the very notion of the nature and order of things, of a single universe, different aspects which are objects of enquiry for the various disciplines, but in such a way that each aspect needs to be related to every other, this notion no longer informs the enterprise of the contemporary American university. It has become an irrelevant concept.17 Is the practice of leisure and its intrinsic end, contemplation, a waste of time? It is exactly that. As Pieper has forcefully reminded us, leisure is the basis of culture. Without leisure, without that waste of time that escapes metric functionalization and managerial manipulation, in short, without the excess that contemplation always is, the university and the research it undertakes and the education it offers will be nothing but two-dimensional, 16 ST I, q. 57, a. 5. 17 MacIntyre, God, Philosophy, Universities, 16.

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that is, as flat as the blade of a circular saw, providing many cutting edges but no depth, or as ineffective as the razor scraping character from the rock. What gives a university and a university education depth and its unique dignity is what is in excess of “usefulness” (what the ancient would call “servility”). The artes liberals carry their end in themselves. And as such they always indicate the way of genuine academic freedom. It is the practice of leisure, however, that enables regular academic freedom to be realized as a freedom for excellence, which is nothing but a freedom for contemplation. I would hope that some of the Catholic colleges and universities in America at least will not only be found among those institutions of higher learning that defend the university’s third dimension but be first and foremost among those eager to return to this third dimension its original dignity and splendor.

(...) The idea of an integrated education, based on the unity of knowledge grounded in truth, must be regained.”

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Desire, the engine of life BY GIOVANNI CUCCI, S.I.

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«St. Gregory the Great verifies the dynamics of spiritual desire in Mary Magdalene’s attempt to find Jesus in the sepulcher, a desire which expands and reinforces itself in spite of all difficulties. “So, she searched at first but did not find; she persevered in the search and found. It so happened that desires grew as they persisted and growing, they reached the object of their search. Holy wishes expand as they persist. If, instead, they weaken while waiting, it is a sign that they are not real wishes.”»


(Detail of the fresco “Noli me tangere” by 127 Fra Angelico, St. Marcus Convent, Florence).

An ambiguity which must be clarified


1 Cfr. Thomas Aquinas, 3 Sent., d35 q1 a2. For more on this subject, cfr. G. CUCCI, La forza della debolezza. Aspetti psicologici della vita spirituale, Rome, AdP, 2007, 21-62. 2 P. Galopin—J. Guillet, “Desiderio,” in X. Leon-Dufour (ed.), Dizionario di Teologia Biblica, Casale Monferrato (Al), Marietti, 1982, col. 265. 3 R. May, L’amore e la volontà, Rome, Astrolabio, 1971, 213.

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To speak of “desire” with regards to spiritual life can provoke a sense of discomfort considering that giving way to desire would lead to an unrestrained life, slave of its own impulses, neglecting the selected values. Desire could also evoke the worst sufferings experienced in life: unrequited love, betrayed friendship, delicate gestures misunderstood…. A series of circumstances which, on opening oneself and expressing what one most appreciates, have led to profound grievances. This tempts us to come to the conclusion that a life without desire would altogether be more restrained, orderly, and stable. However, desire cannot be abolished that easily. In their inseparable binary, desires and attachments constitute the basic element of psychological life, intellectual and spiritually; they are the source of every action. Even when they seem to be a chaotic and complicated assortment, they lead to fundamental and necessary facts which bring relish to life because they provide it with interest and taste. Saint Thomas sharply associates desire with the act of vision itself, an essential selective operation that is drawn to what captivates the heart.1 Quite opposite to other religious traditions, desire also holds a fundamental place in biblical revelation itself, inasmuch as it constitutes a specific element in the relation with God: “For Buddhism, the supreme perfection resides in ‘giving death to desire.’ How far off from this dream seem to be the men of the Bible, even those closer to God! On the contrary, the Bible is full of commotion and the conflicts of all kinds of desires. Certainly it is far from approving them all (...), but in that way they acquire all their strength and provide man’s existence with all its values.”2 On the other hand, in contrast, all these precautions and fears show the power and the role that desire has in life. It can really irradiate the whole being, providing pleasure, strength, courage, and hope when facing decisions and difficulties. As R. May observes, “desire provides will with warmth, content, imagination, playfulness, freshness, and richness. Will provides self-direction, maturity of discernment. Will protects desire allowing it to act without excessive risks, but without risks will loses its heart, its vitality, and tends to extinguish itself in self-contradiction. If a person only has will and no desire, she finds herself constricted, a prisoner of a childhood state, and as an adult who has remained in childhood she can turn into a human robot.”3 Frequently it is precisely the lack of desire that which constitutes the line of division between a successful project, coherent and lasting, and the thousand good intentions which, as it is said, hell is paved with… When it is attractive, the same value turns into something beautiful

HUMANITAS Nº 5 pp. 126 - 137

Psychology with soul

and easy to achieve. From the moral point of view great changes can be brought about when values are attractive to the subject: “behaviour is good and valid as long as it is the outcome of a will for goodness. More important than being good, it is to have the desire of being good.”4 Certainly, paraphrasing psychologist Kubic,5 desire allows one to bring about the only kind of lasting transformation, that is to say, “to change the capacity of changing”: this enables one to create order within disorder. When desire is real, authentic, it leads to a radical restructuring, to “bring order into one’s own life,” as St. Ignatius6 would say, becoming a man able to like and enjoy it7, that is to say, to be happy. But, what is meant by the term “desire”? And how is it possible to recognize in it authenticity and depth?

What is desire? In the field of psychology “desire” and “need” are differentiated. Desire, unlike need, has a more subtle and complex root, related to the history, the memory, and the attachments of the individual. It [desire] is also related to imagination, and it does not easily pinpoint an immediate object, as necessity usually does.8 It would be reductionist therefore to identify desire with pleasure or sexual satisfaction; desire rather is an element present in all aspects of life: intellectual, spiritual, relational, playful. There is an element of continuity in desire which points to a direction, a course, a sense in life, as opposed to necessity which is specific, limited, circumscribed, and of short duration. From the psychological point of view desire could be described as the capacity “to channel all our energies towards an object we consider to be central. It is not therefore the blind impulse, the mad desire, the urge which drives with no control, but a significant tendency towards something appreciated in itself.”9 Desire is therefore a sort of “hinge” which is able to unite cognition, imagination, and affection. It is essential to have a correct knowledge of our desire and to find its adequate object, because that means to know what we want from life and to be prepared to face risks, to make sacrifices and to overcome obstacles in order achieve what we want In a strictly philosophical perspective, it is possible to specify three different levels of this “unifying tendency” that distinguishes desire: 1) in the lowest level, desire is comparable with necessity, as a need for consumable goods (for example, food); 2) as a search for a good whose want is felt, but which is, in a way, present in the individual (such as the wish to be happy, to conclude a study or an enterprise); 3) as an answer to a question present in the individual that challenges him totally, to the extent of compromising his own freedom, even permanently (for example, a choice of life).10

4 A. Manenti, Vivere gli ideali. Fra paura e desiderio/1, Bolonia, Edb, 1988, 200. 5 Cfr. L. S. Kubie, “The Process of Evaluation of Therapy in Psychiatry, in Archives of General Psychiatry 28 (1973), 880-884. 6 Cfr. Ignatius of Loyola, Spiritual Exercises n.21. 7 The act of delighting, in St. Thomas’ sense; he speaks of “beatitudo” as the ultimate end in man’s life and of delight as the reflection of the attainment of that end: “delight is caused by a desire’s coming to rest in a good that has been attained. Hence, since beatitude is nothing other than the attaining of the highest good, beatitude cannot exist without a concomitant delight” (Summa Theol., I-II, q. 4, a.1). 8 “Need provokes a state of internal tension which finds its satisfaction in a specific action produced by the adequate object, as can be food for hunger, whilst desire is indissolubly tied to the “mnestic traces,” as Freud defines them, which find their reward in the hallucinating reproduction of perceptions which have become “signs” of such a satisfaction” (U. Galimberti (ed.), Dizionario di Psicologia, Milan, Garzanti, 1999, 295). In this sense desire, as different from need, involves imagination, dreams and the subject’s experiences of life. 9 A. Manenti, Vivere gli ideali, cit., 61. 10 Cfr. D. Von Hildebrand, Christian Ethics, New York, David McKay Company, 1953, 32. In the present article desire is considered as the second and third meaning of this subdivision.

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From the anthropological point of view, desire unhinges the illuminist conception of the human being as it considers him only under the purview of pure rationality; desire seems, rather, to produce confusion in life, establishing, in a way, a subversive air of chaos. This is why it can be seen as an enemy, as it knocks down life schemes which are too precise, it makes the future uncertain, it brings in unforeseeability, and it reveals that which one would not like to acknowledge: “the world of desire is not a clear and simple world (...). Our culture has sufficiently taken on psychoanalysis’ main acquisitions so that we are rather angered by whatever lapse—“failed” word or gesture—that seems to betray in us certain desires which we would never want to admit, not even to ourselves. The reason for all this is simple: these desires are not only difficult to identify, but often they are so because they are difficult to admit. In fact, the world of our desires raises in us a host of other feelings which we can hardly control.”11 On the other hand, desire, as opposed to necessity, shows the specific spiritual characteristic of man: transcendence. Necessity is related to something immediate, whilst desire can be related to long term facts which imply projections, sacrifices, trials, losses, and renouncement; desire requires the application of all one’s aptitudes and capabilities. Think of the wish [desire] to become a doctor, or to carry out research, or being engaged in bringing justice to a situation of abuse or exploitation: all this means that desire must last for a period of time. And above all, and this is the most important aspect, desire does not seem to fade away with its concrete achievements.

The dialectic between desires and limits

11 A. Loup, Generati dallo Spirito, Magnano (Bi), Qiqajon, 1994,96. 12 “To Desire” derives from the latin verb which signifies “to be aware of the lack of sidera” that’s to say from the necessary constellations to extract the aruspici; therefore, in common language, “to feel the want of” (G. Devoto G. C. Oli, Nuovo Vocabulario Illustrato della Lingua Italiana, Milano, Selezione, 1987, 858). 13 Cfr. on this B. Kiely, Psicologia e teologia morale. Linee di convergenza, Casale Monferrato (Al), Marietti, 1982, 206-220.

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To speak of desire is also to speak of a need,12 of a struggle and a tendency towards action in order to reach a good we lack. This means that the joy of achieving something is only “one side of the coin” of living. The other side, just as essential, is set by limits: it can be said that existence, seen under this point of view, moves in two fundamental directions, symmetrical and opposed to each other.13 The world of desire reveals to the human being that he is potentially infinite. When he is born he can learn any language, accomplish any undertaking; everything seems to be equally laid out before the range of his possibilities: he could be an entrepreneur, a monk, a teacher, an explorer, an athlete....Furthermore, desire opens the door to thousands of more possible wishes; it never knows the word “end,” and seems to grow as time goes by: reading a book leads to other possible and infinite readings; a person one knows also establishes relationships with others close to her; one experience enables many others, one can

Psychology con withalma soul Psicología «Noli me tangere», fresco by Fra Angelico, St. Marcus Convent, Florence.

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14 Cfr. F. O. Kernberg, Teoria della relazione oggettuale e clinica psicoanalitica, Turin, Boringhieri, 1980, 15-82.

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never reach the point of saying “enough.” However, with the enchantment of new discoveries comes also, sooner or later, exhaustion and disappointment, that is, the awareness of a limit. Then one enters into a course which leads to reappraisal: with time learning becomes more tiresome and the virtually infinite possibilities are relentlessly reduced. If desire is the budding of life which remains fresh and blossoming, limit introduces the notion of the death of infinite potential undertakings and achievements; it reminds one of definitiveness in the sense of no return, the closure of any possibility. However, limit inasmuch as desire, is not negative in itself, because it makes living possible. Think for example of the exact limits which have made possible the appearance of life on earth: it would only be a question of shifting the inclination of the earth’s axis a few degrees, or the distance of the sun, or temperature, to turn the earth into a desert. Without boundaries there can be no order or stability: in the book of Genesis, creation is strictly described as a series of limits introduced by God to allow the different forms of life to develop and spread more and more. Limit is also important to psychological health: the absence of interior boundaries characterize, in fact, the lack of psychological development known as psychosis, in which the subject cannot perceive his interior differences with outer reality, but only a kind of diffused and undifferentiated anxiety.14 According to our discussion, the presence of a boundary does not at all imply the death of desire but rather constitutes the only possible way of fulfilling it: it isn’t possible to carry out desires without knowing or considering the limits, that’s to say, the potentialities [capacities] that really are at hand. Also, a limit is only perceived as such within the perspective, proper of desire, of overcoming it. The two movements of desire and limit, the beginning and the end, closely cross each other: the central point in their balance is the necessity of making a decision, choosing what one really wants and therefore giving up many other equally achievable tasks. What at first sight appears to be an obvious perception: “I want to do this, therefore I can’t do that,” is often the core of the problem. If the wish is not known, discovered, matured, if the limit is not considered or is rejected as something negative, then it is impossible to decide, to establish an accurate option, specially, if it is a definitive one. Hence the importance of the so called “ fundamental paradox” of human life: recognizing and accepting as such the dialectic between desire and limit, and knowing it to be the only possible way to obtain what one most strongly wishes, it is easier to live this dialectic. Problems arise when that dynamic is not accepted and one tries to eliminate it, yielding to the temptations of one-sidedness.

Desire presents itself as an arduous good which is achieved through struggles and denials. When difficulties are excessive, they stifle desire. However, the opposite is also true: excessive comfort and ease is just as destructive of desire, emphasizing the sense of independence, of low self-esteem (because nothing has “ever” been gained in life...), of the passivity that leads one to prefer comfort rather than profundity. It is precisely the wealth of disposable means that have no adequate project that imply the risk of extinguishing desire, as is illustrated in Borges’ famous story where one is ushered into a huge library and having no interests or reference points ends up discouraged and overwhelmed by the weight of the multiplicity and vastness of potential parcours [paths, routes]. The inability to know what one wants, to manage values so as to be able to differentiate the quality of multiple options, the illusion of always having before one equidistant possible choices of life (cultural, professional, relations, attachments), ends up paradoxically blocking initiative because one doesn’t know from where to start. To this must be added a cultural condition with a proliferation of needs and an awareness of a scarcity of wishes, which extends a veil of instability over existence. Without long term projects which seriously require a person’s involvement, life itself loses its flavor and is reduced to a consumable good. A document published some years ago by the Pontifical Work for Ecclesiastical Vocations attributed the reason for the disorientation of the young to the excessive possibilities (but not only this) as having to wander through a thousand different paths without being able to differentiate them in order of importance for their own life, with dangerous pitfalls in the scale of their options: “Like ancient Rome, modern Europe seems similar to a pantheon or great temple in which all the ‘divinities’ are present, or in which every ‘value’ has its place and its niche. Different and contrasting ‘values’ are represented and exist together, without any precise gradation; completely dissimilar codes of reading and evaluation, of orientation and behavior. In such a context it is difficult to have a unified conception or vision of the world, and in consequence, the ability even to plan one's life is weakened. In fact, when a culture no longer defines the supreme possibilities of meaning, or does not manage to converge around certain values as particularly capable of giving meaning to life, but places everything on the same level, every possibility of projective choice falls and everything becomes indifferent and flat.”15 With a mentality which expects everything “now, and at once,” and an overprotective environment, there is the risk that desire may die.

Psychology with soul

The crisis of desire


15 Pontifical Work for the Ecclesiastical Vocations, New vocations for a new Europe, January 6, 1998, n. 11a.

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Furthermore, if the habit of overcoming difficulties does not exist, there remains a state of boredom, of interior frailty, so that should there appear an obstacle or a conflict, the situation could easily deteriorate, with dramatic results: at this point this calamity is interpreted as a total disaster, and makes it impossible to go on living. Frequently the adolescent’s and young person’s suicide—a fact in dramatic increase in western societies—has its origin in totally disproportioned motivations, lived as a kind of global catastrophe: “If there is no gratitude, life does not unfold to hope and closes itself in a repetitive present, similar to an infinite cloning of multiple small instants, all alike, instants which slip away into a vacuum. This is boredom (...). The young person of our days is one who (...) “could, but does not want,” disillusioned and hurt by welfare and a little depressed and angry, or satiated and unsatisfied, as different sociological analyses point out. He is subtly fragile: a blow from his father, a bad mark at school, a “no” from a girlfriend would wipe out the future and with it all possible desire.”16 Given this condition it is indispensable to learn to understand desire, to decipher the symbolic meaning which characterizes it, acknowledging its teaching of life. But is it possible to establish “a scale of gradations” between different desires in order to recognize their value and truth? The seriousness of these unavoidable questions in addition to the importance of knowing one’s own desires shows the effective help that comes from the routine of the spiritual life. It is in reading and interpreting desire that the psychological discourse discovers some of the fundamental elements of the spiritual life, such as asceticism and renunciation: these must not be understood as enemies of desire but as a way of recognition and maturity of what is really worthy, rejecting that which, in spite of its attraction, removes all flavor from life, leaving the person at the mercy of her whims.

For an education of desire

16 A. Cencini, Il modno dei desideri. Orientamenti per la guida spirituale, Milan, Ed. Paoline, 1998, 29. The impressive increase in young suicides, after different explanations, seems to be rooted in the impossibility to distinguish and differentiate the object of the problems. On this cfr. P. Crepet, Le dimensioni del vuoto. I giovani e il suicidio, Milan, Feltrinelli,1993, 51 s.

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The essential assumption of this work [education of desire] lies in the trust that profound wishes will be fulfilled and adequately achieved. This trust implies having a concept of life and of the world controlled by order and sense, a concept of life that makes compromise and effort worthwhile. It is not by chance that desire is also a powerful sign of God’s presence in one’s own life. The Gospel itself can be seen as a fundamental education of desire. For example, let us think of Jesus’ initial question in St. John’s Gospel, “What seek you?” (Jn 1:38), it is a question that invites us to clarify our heart before we follow him. Also within the context of miracles, Jesus again refers to desire; when he meets the paralyzed man at the Bethsaida pool he first asks him:

Psychology with soul

“Wilt thou be healed?” (Jn 5:6). It is not a question that can be taken for granted, and, in fact, the sick man does not answer it but instead he goes on talking about problems which are familiar to him,17 the problems of a typical day in a paralytic’s life. To be “healed” means to deal with the fear of losing a probably painful condition, but a familiar one, in order to start a new life, healthier and freer, but also more insecure, difficult, and unknown; this is why some hypothetically promising decisions are never carried out when the opportunity presents itself. Therefore, in order to change, it is not enough to simply “not be well” or to be exasperated; it is necessary to truly wish to introduce something new in one’s own life while, at the same time, being ready to accept its cost. Jesus invites us to be aware of what is important to wish from life, as a guide for further steps in healing and salvation. How can we know then the truth and depth of our desire? The first criterion of valuation is duration. A profound wish does not die out with time but rather, like the grain of mustard in the parable (Mk 4, 31), grows more and more. Profound desires are not normally extinguished by difficulties and failures but are, instead, reinforced. It is like thirst: if one doesn’t find something to drink, one doesn’t give up but on the contrary, there comes a moment in which that need ends up occupying all of one’s thoughts and plans. This characteristic was well recognized by the Fathers of the Church. St. Gregory the Great verifies the dynamics of spiritual desire in Mary Magdalene’s attempt to find Jesus in the sepulcher, a desire which expands and reinforces itself in spite of all difficulties. “So, she searched at first but did not find; she persevered in the search and found. It so happened that desires grew as they persisted and growing, they reached the object of their search. Holy wishes expand as they persist. If, instead, they weaken while waiting, it is a sign that they are not real wishes.”18 St. Ignatius of Loyola achieves the first fundamental experience of God by listening to his own heart and becoming aware of this strange alternation: worldly desires are easily assimilated but do not last long and finally they leave a void and a sour taste in one’s mouth; the desire for God instead (“to go barefoot to Jerusalem, feeding only on herbs, practicing known acts of austerities common to saints”)19 presents at first a certain resistance, but once accepted, it brings about profound peace and serenity, which lingers in time. Thirty years had gone by when he related this experience and yet the desire for Jerusalem was still filling and kindling Ignatius’ heart. Secondly, it is important to observe whether from one wish there spring others which contribute and stimulate the undertaking of other equally fine things. The “circular character” is proper of the


17 “Sir, I have no man, when the water is troubled, to put me into the pond. For whilst I am coming, another goeth down before me” (Jn 5:7). 18 Gregory the Great, s., Omilie sui Vangeli, Om. 25, 12.15. 19 Cfr. Ignatius of Loyola, Autobiography, n.8.

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«St. Ignatius of Loyola achieves the first fundamental experience of God by listening to his own heart and becoming aware of this strange alternation: worldly desires are easily assimilated but do not last long and finally they leave a void and a sour taste in one’s mouth; the desire for God instead presents at first a certain resistance, but once accepted, it brings about profound peace and serenity, which lingers in time.»

20 Cfr. Ignatius of Loyola, Spiritual Exercises, n. 43. 21 Cfr. P. Ricoeur, Tempo e racconto, vol. 3, Il tempo raccontato, Milan, Jaca Book, 1988, 372-380.

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spirit; one realizes that undertaking a charitable action helps one to better live other moments of the day: while praying, while studying, while relating to others, for instance. It is another way of detecting how desire grows with time, bringing peace and serenity. In order to carry this out, however, it is necessary to pause and look at previous experience from a distance, as when one wishes to observe a town or a region in its entirety, it must be viewed from afar. Through the examination of conscience St. Ignatius had this moment of distance from what he had lived20: an invitation to examine his day from a particular point of view, observing the desires he had possessed. The re-reading of one’s own life is one of the most sacred and important signs one may fulfill, a sign which, however, is frequently unheeded and performed too late, before death. As Ignatius suggests, performing this calmly and with a sense of gratitude does not only help identify profound wishes but also purifies them, living one’s own failures in a different way. As the philosopher Santayana points out, a man who has not known his own past is condemned to repeat it. In any case, it is important that this examination also includes an expert knowledgeable in spiritual matters. Above all, that person should be able to listen. Often it is not necessary to say too much because he who is talking, the moment he speaks, sees his life unfolding before him, finding “one’s own narrative identity,”21 as Ricoeur calls it. One can only know oneself by telling others about oneself in a context of welcoming gratuity, without the pressure of duty or the anguish of judgement. Spiritual assistance is not supposed to get an easy answer to an immediate problem; it is instead a slow labor, profound and tedious, of undoubtable help in the knowledge of oneself from the human point of view. A precious fruit from this examination is also to learn from one’s own errors, a personal characteristic of the saints. Just as in science and civilization, each person’s spiritual life acts according to trial and error; sin itself discloses a teaching, and as long as one does not

Translated by Juana Subercaseaux

Psychology with soul

perceive it, one risks remaining its prisoner. Instead, when one is able to decipher the symbolic value of a desire which had appeared as “bad,” it loses its “magic” power which drives towards evil, revealing the worth one had always been looking for; as the spiritual masters observed: “When the fundamental desire is uncovered—which is always a desire for absolute love—(...), a thousand apparently bad small desires, which act as bait, lose their attraction and are no longer experienced as an almost irresistible ‘vertigo’ or as ‘dangerous,’ contrary to what they had appeared to be.”22 Therefore far from being a spoil of the most outrageous materialism, the world of desires essentially leads us to the spiritual dimension, transcendent because it invites us to go beyond ourselves, to elaborate a project, and bet on it, even through sacrifice, accomplishing what one most vividly desires, for it can give a sense, a meaning, and a direction—so to speak—to one’s life.


22 A. Louf, Generati dallo Spirito, cit., 99.

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NOTES Saint John’s Bible, handwritten and illuminated for today’s man By Verónica Griffin Barros

In 1998, the Benedictine Abbey

and Saint John’s University of Collegeville, Minnesota, and the master English calligrapher Donald Jackson undertook the task of creating a hand-written and illuminated Bible. This was the first handwritten Bible made in a Benedictine monastery since the invention of the press. The purpose was to create a Bible that would illuminate faith in modern man. That would capture the beauty and dignity of the great medieval Bibles, but with eloquent images for today’s man, and contemporary Biblical texts. Fifteen years later the work was concluded. It is called the Saint John’s Bible. It has 1,150 pages divided into seven volumes (Pentateuch, Historical Books, Books of Wisdom, Psalms, Prophets, Gospels and Acts, Letters

and the Apocalypse). Each volume weighs more than 35 pounds and when it is open it is two feet high and three feet across (24 inches by 36 inches). Six calligraphers and some ten artists of illumination worked on it. The original version, written in the English language, is at the Hill Museum & Manuscript Library of the University of Saint John today. Something happens to all those who look at its pages. The spacious margins comfort and move the spirit to meditation. When the Bible is seen handwritten with a calligraphy to which one is not accustomed today, and to realize the time that took each calligrapher to write out each word, turn the word to its original sense of a person to person message, “from heart to heart” in the words of Pope Francis.


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Illustration from the Book of Genesis: The Creation.

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Donald Jackson. Photography by Andrew Montgomery.

Donald Jackson writing the first words of the Gospel according to John. Photography by Andrew Montgomery.

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The handwritten and illuminated Bible was a lifelong dream of Donald Jackson, official calligrapher of the British Crown and former Chairman of the Society of Scribes & Illuminators in the United Kingdom. He discussed the project with Fr. Eric Hollas, OSB, Executive Director of the Hill Museum & Manuscript Library at that time, and then submitted it in 1995 to the monks of Saint John. The project revitalized a venerable Benedictine tradition. Due to the extraordinary quality that this work would reach and the need they had noticed for man to be enchanted again not only with the substance, but with the form in which the Holy Scriptures were presented, the monks adopted Jackson’s dream.


Those who were going to work on Saint John’s Bible would do so in the same way that it was done in medieval Benedictine monasteries. The Minnesota Benedictines appointed a Committee on Illumination and Text directed by Father Michael Patella OSB, and consisting of monks, artists, medievalists, theologians, biblical scholars, and art historians. They would determine what version of the Bible would be finally used: the New Revised International Standard Version, and would be in charge of reflecting on the theological aspects of the project such as proportions, page by page, the instructions, the reference material, and the work plan for the team of calligraphers, illuminators, and designers who would work under the direction of Donald Jackson from his scriptorium in Monmouth, Wales. Between 1996 and 1997, the Minnesota group developed an illumination plan, and Jackson and his team elaborated the samples and the preparatory drawings. Simultaneously, Jackson created a new script specifically for the new Bible. Due to the length of the text that was to be transcribed, the Bible should be small, legible, modern, and at the same time worthy of a sacred book. The first task of the six calligraphers involved in the project was to study it and get accustomed to its style and texture. Today, only subtle differences allow us to distinguish the hand of the different copyists. With the help of computers, the rhythm, the size, and the spacing between letters and the words of Jackson’s calligraphy were imitated. Ideal separation between paragraphs and the places for the illuminations were established, even the text of each page and time that the calligraphers were going to take in the transcription: between seven and half and thirteen hours to complete the 108 lines foreseen for each page. Such careful planning would allow the simultaneous work of the scribes, the illuminators, and the correctors. Donald Jackson was particularly careful in watching that each page

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facing each other was written by the same calligrapher, even though they should pass through several hands that added notes at the foot of the page, the titles, the numbers of the chapters, the capital letters, and, occasionally, brief referential texts in Hebrew. The following step was to elaborate a vellum or calfskin parchment, very strong material that thereafter would be treated and scrubbed with different abrasives, giving a perfect, soft and velvety texture, over which they could write and paint. The scribes required strong and flexible quills. The best would be made from the largest flight feathers used by birds. Goose quills for the main body of the text, and turkey and swan quills for the capital and heavier letter forms. The quills must be sunk in water, ground, and trimmed before they can be used as

writing tools. In order to write the central text, black ink would be used, which was prepared with lamp black ink from nineteenth-century Chinese ink sticks. In order to emphasize the beginning of each paragraph, the number of the verses and the marginal notes of the texts would be highlighted with vermilion red and blue with a mixture of azurite and lapis lazuli, which already is a form of ornamentation. On March 8, Ash Wednesday of the year 2000, Donald Jackson wrote the first words on the parchments. They were the verses of Saint John’s Gospel: “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God…” Eleven years later, on the May 9, 2011, the great work was completed and Jackson wrote the final word, “Amen.”

Reflection of Benedictine spirituality The term “illumination” comes from the Latin “illuminare” that means “bathe with light” and is used when a manuscript is decorated with gold leaf. It is a technique of which the strictest version used in this Bible was assisted by the dampness of the gilder’s breath, who fixes the gold over a thick coat of gesso—a mix of chalk, plaster, and agglutinating paste—previously

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applied on the surface of the parchment that is going to be illuminated. After careful polish, the optimum result allows the appreciation of the slightly elevated contours, typical of the gesso, which reflect the light and improve the effect of the gold. Illumination is not only an illustration. It is a spiritual meditation

service of the Lord in any time or in any state of his life. A very Benedictine subject is the careful care for all those things that arise from the principle set forth in Chapter XXXI of the Rule of Saint Benedict: “that everything be cared for like sacred vases of the altar.” This translates in the delicate

turned into vision that is meant to enrich the text. “It is a Benedictine approach to the Scriptures,” explains Father Michael Patella, OSB, former Chairman of the Illumination and Text Committee of the Saint John’s Bible. Special care was taken for Saint John’s Bible to reflect the Benedictine spirituality. The principles set forth by Saint Benedict in the Rule that he drafted for his monks in the 5th Century, have shown themselves to be admirably valid for every man who wishes to put himself at the

attention put in every detail of the elaboration of the Bible. Another principle is hospitality, promulgated in Chapter LIII: “To all the aliens who present themselves (at the monastery) they will be welcomed as Christ…” which reflects in the selection of the texts that were highlighted in the margins—the marginalia—and the motives for the illustrations, particularly referring to charity for the poor, the pilgrim, the foreigner. The third, justice: “Always prefer mercy to justice,” in

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The Ten Commandments.

First page of the Gospel according to Matthew.

Chapter LXIII. No less important is the conversion of customs, that in the Benedictine Order constitute a special vote, and to which the Bible of Saint John constantly exhorts. Many illuminations represent signs of present times. For instance, the threads of DNA that were used to represent the “Genealogy of Christ” in St. Mathew’s Gospel; the Twin Towers of New York, for the parables of St. Luke, representing the need to forgive. In describing the third day of Creation, satellite images of the Nile delta were used. And for the creation of man, on the sixth day, the cave paintings of Africa and Australia were chosen. Textile models from the Peruvian Indians and from North America, as well as Africa and the

East were also used in vignettes and decorative models. The forests of Saint John University or the countryside close to Donald Jackson’s house in Wales, contributed to the flora and fauna that decorated the marginalia of the pilgrims. They are used as a metaphor of the wonder of God’s creation and highlight the singular connection between this Bible and the author of its initiative and the Benedictine monastery where it was made. The marginalia of nature are completed with templates and stamps of more abstract themes. Applied by the scribes and illuminators, they create a rich visual vocabulary and provide recurrent elements within and through the volumes of the Bible.

*** Published at the dawn of the 21st Century, the Bible of Saint John “seeks to ignite the spiritual imagination of believers throughout the world by commissioning a work of art that illuminates the Word of God for a new millennium.” This is what the Benedictine monks of Saint John’s Abbey of Minnesota expect, with a bit of candidness, but founded on hope

in the love of God for all his children. This purpose joins with that of reviving a tradition of the medieval monasteries which was decisive for the preservation of knowledge and culture. Not of least important has been the ability for art historians to witnessa process that was once a fundamental activity of human civilization.

Beginning of The Gospel according to John. More information on the website www.saintjohnsbible.org In addition to the original manuscript Bible, the project contemplated a limited edition of 299 printed issues of real size, with a manual application of gold and signed by the author. This edition is on sale. A patrimonial edition, made by the Liturgical Press, size 9.3/4” by 15” is also at the disposal of the public. It may be bought at: http://www.saintjohnsbible.org/Subjects.aspx?ID=45 Translated by Marlene Hyslop

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On July 25, 1913, Juana Ross de Edwards died. She was the spouse of Agustín Edwards Ossandón and a member of a renowned family whose roots are a fruit of, and a testimony to Valparaíso’s English ascendancy. A prominent figure in Chile during her years and noted for her generosity, Juana stood out because she incarnated the ideals of love and generosity that stemmed from her Catholic identity. Despite being well-off, she was not unaware of the needs and vices of the people of this city. Rather, she became a great benefactor of hospitals, homes, and asylums, dedicating her life to her neighbours, especially the poorest. Humanitas offers to the Anglophone public the homily delivered by the Bishop of Valparaíso on this anniversary, in which he presents a biographical sketch of this admirable person who unites and incarnates the richness of the English tradition with its legacy in Chile.

We thank God our Father for an extraor- dren and, in general, the weakest of our Chilean dinary woman He brought to our Church (particularly Valparaíso’s) community were the preferred objects of her and our Chilean nation: affections and concerns. Juana Ross Edwards de IN SPITE OF THE FACT THAT SHE BELONGED TO Who was Juana Ross? Edwards, the centenary THE MOST EXCLUSIVE GROUP IN THE SOCIETY The daughter of a distinof whose death we are OF HER TIME, AND LIVED IN A BEAUTIFUL guished family of immicommemorating. This PALACE, JUANA, A CULTURED, INTELLIGENT, grants who settled in La notable benefactor was, AND SHARP WOMAN, DID NOT LIVE ISOLATED Serena, she received a during the time of her IN AN “IVORY TOWER.” SHE WAS AWARE OF good human and Chrislife (at the end of the 19th THE POVERTY, INJUSTICE, AND INEQUITY tian education, first of all century and beginning THAT COEXISTED WITH WEALTH IN THE in the midst of her own of the 20th), the owner FLOURISHING VALPARAÍSO OF THOSE DAYS. family. She contracted of the largest personal SHE WAS ACQUAINTED WITH THE POVERTY— marriage at a very young fortune in Chile; yet she AND THE POOR LIVING IN THE HILLS, RAVINES, age, given the required chose to live like the AND SLUMS OF THE CITY. dispensations, with her poorest, using her means uncle Agustín Edwards to better the situation of those in our society who were most in need. The Ossandón. Because of her husband’s job, they poor, the elderly, and the sick; defenceless chil- moved to the then flourishing Valparaíso, and it

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was in this city that she spent most of her life, and where she left us the greater part of her work. “Bor n wit h a silver spoon in her mouth,” life was nevertheless not at all easy for her. She was deeply affected by the death of her parents; of eight of her nine siblings; of her husband; of her seven children; and of her best friends. This true personal and familial tragedy, which would have been enough to lead any person to a deep crisis, and depression, and the loss of the will to live, provided her with the occasion to definitively start a new life, now entirely dedicated to the love of a “new family”: those most in need in both material and spiritual terms. What was the secret that gave Juana Ross’s life its deep meaning? What is the key to understand her existence? It is a secret not at all secret: her profound faith in Jesus Christ, dead and risen for the sake of us all; her intimate love for the holy Virgin Mary; and the Christian conviction that spiritual and material goods have been given to us by God so that we share them, especially with our brothers and sisters that need them the most. In fact, the goods that we do not share turn into evil. And he or she who gives his goods to the poor “stores up a treasure in heaven” for eternal life, as the Lord tells us. In spite of the fact that she belonged to the most exclusive group in the society of her time,

and lived in a beautiful palace, Juana, a cultured, intelligent, and shar p woma n, did not live isolated in an “ivory tower.” She was aware of the poverty, injustice, a nd i nequ it y t hat coex isted with wealth in the flourishing Va lp a r a í s o o f those days. She was acquainted with the povert y— a nd t he poor living in the hills, ravines, and slums of the city. And after she was widowed and lost the majority of her loved ones, she renounced her goods, made a vow of poverty, always dressed for mourning, donated her beautiful mansion to build a temple for the Virgin del Carmen, and devoted herself, in heart and soul, to her “new family,” renouncing all social life and zealously cultivating a low profile. She exercised love intelligently. She did not simply give away her money, but committed herself to already existing institutions: mainly the Charity of the Ladies of Valparaíso and The Company of the Daughters of Charity of Saint Vincent de Paul. She also helped to create works and institutions that lasted: children’s homes, homes for the elderly, homes for widows, hospitals, educational establishments, houses and villages for workers and the poor, churches, chapels, and parishes. In sum, an impressive number of good works, many of

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which still exist, at the service of those most in for those most in need that lived in that city. need, in whom she always saw Jesus’ counte- And after the civil war ended in 1891, and she nance. All this was done with discretion and could come back to Chile, she opened a secret reserve, always anonymously. In fact, she never bank account to help the soldiers and officers of the army that were loyal attended the inaugural to Balmaceda and so had ceremonies. to migrate to Lima. This Meanwhile, she lived THIS NOTABLE BENEFACTOR WAS, DURING THE is an event worthy of modestly, taking part TIME OF HER LIFE (AT THE END OF THE 19TH meditation. The Gospel every day in the Holy CENTURY AND BEGINNING OF THE 20TH), THE at its core. Mass and receiving comOWNER OF THE LARGEST PERSONAL FORTUNE Yet, we would not like munion. She prayed the IN CHILE; YET SHE CHOSE TO LIVE LIKE THE it if this thanksgiving Rosary every day and POOREST, USING HER MEANS TO BETTER THE celebration for Juana Ross devoted an important SITUATION OF THOSE IN OUR SOCIETY WHO Edwards de Edwards part of her time to reaWERE MOST IN NEED. THE POOR, THE ELDERLY, was reduced to a relation ding and prayer. AND THE SICK; DEFENCELESS CHILDREN AND, and a memory, much Yet there is one event IN GENERAL, THE WEAKEST OF OUR CHILEAN as we all admire her for in her life which is quite (PARTICULARLY VALPARAÍSO’S) COMMUNITY her good works and the unknown and which I WERE THE PREFERRED OBJECTS OF HER testimony to her saintly would like to highlight, AFFECTIONS AND CONCERNS. life. She is the starting especially because it point. Indeed, we firmly should still be significant to us. During her exile in Lima (she was expe- believe that the celebration in which we are lled from the country by order of Balmaceda’s participating should be an opportunity for us government), she silently performed acts of love to ask ourselves, before our conscience and

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the Lord, what are we doing with our lives and with our spiritual and material goods, be they many or few? We are part of a superficial culture in which everyone thinks he clearly knows what all others should do; in which we judge everyone and about everything. Is not this an opportunity God gives us to meditate very deeply on how we should better share more of our time, the greatest good we possess, and other spiritual and material goods, with those who lack them? Is this not an opportunity to try to better understand the tragic reality in which many of those around us live? Is this not an opportunity to become alive to the great iniquities that take place in Chile and Valparaíso? All this, I insist, is not to think what others should do, and thus remain inactive, merely judging and commenting, but to personally become engaged in some of the opportunities to serve our neighbours offered both in our

civil society and in the churches, recalling St. Alberto Hurtado’s maxim: “Give until it hurts; give yourself until it hurts.” On the centennial of her death, many people and institutions have praised her great work. (…) Yet I believe we are missing something very important and personal: we must ask ourselves, in the presence of the Lord, what should we do to follow the steps of such a notable and committed Catholic woman? The Lord shall make us accountable for the use we have made of the goods He has blessed us with; for the good we did and the good we left undone. I hope we will all hear, at the end of our lives and from the mouth of our heavenly Father, what Jesus tells us in the Gospel: “Well done, good and faithful servant, enter into the joy of your Master;” “I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.”

Translated by Rafael Simian

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The Pope in His own Words

HE ALWAYS CREATES HARMONY IN THE CHURCH “Our unity is not primarily a fruit of our own consensus or of the democracy in the Church, or of our effort to get along with each other; rather, it comes from the One who creates unity in diversity, because the Holy Spirit is harmony and always creates harmony in the Church,” said H.H. Francis during his Wednesday general audience.

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HUMANITAS Nº 5 pp. 150 - 161


n the Creed we say “I believe in one... Church.” In other words we profess that the Church is one, and this Church by her nature is one. However if we look at the Catholic Church in the world, we discover that it includes almost 3,000 dioceses scattered over all the continents: so many languages, so many cultures! Present here are many bishops from many diverse cultures, from many countries. There is a bishop of Sri Lanka, a bishop of South Africa, a bishop from India, there are many here... bishops from Latin America. The Church is spread throughout the world! And yet the thousands of Catholic communities form a unit. How can this be?

Unity in faith, hope and charity, unity in the sacraments, in the ministry: these are like the pillars that hold up and keep together the one great edifice of the Church. We find a concise answer in the Compendium of the Catechism of the Catholic Church which says: the Catholic Church in the world “has but one faith, one sacramental life, one apostolic succession, one common hope, and one and the same charity” (n. 161). It is a beautiful definition, clear, it orients us well. Unity in faith, hope and charity, unity in the sacraments, in the ministry: these are like the pillars that hold up and keep together the one great edifice of the Church. Wherever we go, even to the smallest parish in the most remote corner of this earth, there is the one Church. We are at home, we are in the family, we are among brothers and sisters. And this is a great gift of God! The Church is one for us all. There is not one

Church for Europeans, one for Africans, one for Americans, one for Asians, one for those who live in Oceania. No, she is one and the same everywhere. It is like being in a family: some of its members may be far away, scattered across the world, but the deep bonds that unite all the members of a family stay solid however great the distance. I am thinking, for example, of my experience of the World Youth Day in Rio de Janeiro: in that endless crowd of young people on the beach at Copacabana we could hear many languages spoken, we could note very different facial features, we came across different cultures and yet there was profound unity, they formed one Church, they were united and one could sense it. Let us all ask ourselves: as a Catholic, do I feel this unity? As a Catholic, do I live this unity of the Church? Or doesn’t it concern me because I am closed within my own small group or within myself? Am I one of those who “privatize” the Church to their own group, their own country or their own friends? It is sad to find a “privatized” Church out of selfishness or a lack of faith. It is sad! When I hear that so many Christians in the world are suffering, am I indifferent or is it

I am thinking, for example, of my experience of the World Youth Day in Rio de Janeiro: in that endless crowd of young people on the beach at Copacabana we could hear many languages spoken, we could note very different facial features, we came across different cultures and yet there was profound unity, they formed one Church, they were united and one could sense it.

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As a Catholic, do I live this unity of the Church? Or doesn’t it concern me because I am closed within my own small group or within myself? Am I one of those who “privatize” the Church to their own group, their own country or their own friends? as if one of my family were suffering? When I think or hear it said that many Christians are persecuted and give their lives for their faith, does this touch my heart or not? Am I open to a brother or sister of the family who is giving his or her life for Jesus Christ? Do we pray for each other? I have a question for you, but don’t answer out loud, only in your heart. How many of you pray for Christians who are being persecuted? How many? Everyone respond in you heart. Do I pray for my brother, for my sister who is in difficulty because they confess and defend their faith? It is important to look beyond our own boundaries, to feel that we are Church, one family in God! Let us go a step further and ask ourselves: are there wounds in this unity? Can we hurt this unity? Unfortunately, we see that in the process of history, and now too, we do not always live in unity. At times misunderstanding arises, as well as conflict, tension and division which injure her and so the Church does not have the face we should like her to have; she does not express love, the love that God desires. It is we who create wounds! And if we look at the divisions that still exist among Christians, Catholics, Orthodox, Protestants... we are aware of the effort required to make this unity fully visible. God gives us unity, but we often have a lot of trouble putting it

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into practice. It is necessary to seek to build communion, to teach communion, to get the better of misunderstandings and divisions, starting with the family, with ecclesial reality, in ecumenical dialogue too. Our world needs unity, this is an age in which we all need unity, we need reconciliation and communion and the Church is the home of communion. St Paul told the Christians of Ephesus: “I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, beg you to lead a life worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all lowliness and meekness, with patience, forbearing one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace” (4:1-3). Humility, meekness, magnanimity, love to preserve unity! These, these are the roads, the true roads of the Church. Let us listen to this again. Humility against vanity, against arrogance — humility, meekness, magnanimity, love to preserve unity. Then Paul continued: there is one body, that of Christ that we receive in the Eucharist; and one Spirit, the Holy Spirit who enlivens and constantly recreates the Church; one hope, eternal life; one single faith, one baptism, one God and Father of us all (cf. vv. 4-6). The wealth of what unites us! This is the true wealth: what unites us, not what divides us. This is the wealth of the Church! Let each one ask him- or herself today “do I increase harmony in my family, in my parish, in my community or am I a gossip.

At times misunderstanding arises, as well as conflict, tension and division which injure her and so the Church does not have the face we should like her to have; she does not express love, the love that God desires. It is we who create wounds!

Let each one ask him- or herself today “do I increase harmony in my family, in my parish, in my community or am I a gossip. Am I a cause of division or embarrassment? And you know the harm that gossiping does to the Church, to the parishes, the communities. Gossip does harm! Gossip wounds. Am I a cause of division or embarrassment? And you know the harm that gossiping does to the Church, to the parishes, the communities. Gossip does harm! Gossip wounds. Before Christians open their mouths to gossip, they should bite their tongue! To bite one’s tongue: this does us good because the tongue swells and can no longer speak, cannot gossip. Am I humble enough to patiently stitch up, through sacrifice, the open wounds in communion?”. Finally, the last step which takes us to a

greater depth. Now, this is a good question: who is the driving force of the Church’s unity? It is the Holy Spirit, whom we have all received at Baptism and also in the Sacrament of Confirmation. It is the Holy Spirit. Our unity is not primarily a fruit of our own consensus or of the democracy in the Church, or of our effort to get along with each other; rather, it comes from the One who creates unity in diversity, because the Holy Spirit is harmony and always creates harmony in the Church. And harmonious unity in the many different cultures, languages, and ways of thinking. The Holy Spirit is the mover. This is why prayer is important. It is the soul of our commitment as men and women of communion, of unity. Pray to the Holy Spirit that he may come and create unity in the Church. Let us ask the Lord: Lord, grant that we be more and more united, never to be instruments of division; enable us to commit ourselves, as the beautiful Franciscan prayer says, to sowing love where there is hatred; where there is injury, pardon; and union where there is discord. So be it. (Vatican, September 25, 2013)



et me tell you what I hope will be the outcome of World Youth Day: I hope there will be noise. Here there will be noise, I’m quite sure. Here in Rio there will be plenty of noise, no doubt about that. But I want you to make yourselves heard in your dioceses, I want the noise to go out, I want the Church to go out onto the streets, I want us to resist everything worldly, everything static, everything comfortable, everything to do with clericalism, everything

that might make us closed in on ourselves. The parishes, the schools, the institutions are made for going out ... if they don’t, they become an NGO, and the Church cannot be an NGO. May the bishops and priests forgive me if some of you create a bit of confusion afterwards. That’s my advice. Thanks for whatever you can do. (…) Faith in Jesus Christ is not a joke, it is something very serious. It is a scandal that God came to be one of us. It is a scandal that he died on a cross.

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It is a scandal: the scandal of the Cross. The Cross continues to provoke scandal. But it is the one sure path, the path of the Cross, the path of Jesus, the path of the Incarnation of Jesus. Please do not water down your faith in Jesus Christ. We dilute fruit drinks – orange, apple, or banana juice, but please do not drink a diluted form of faith. Faith is whole and entire, not something that you water down. It is faith in Jesus. It is faith in the Son of God made man, who loved me and who died for me. So then: make yourselves heard; take care of the

two ends of the population: the elderly and the young; do not allow yourselves to be excluded and do not allow the elderly to be excluded. Secondly: do not “water down” your faith in Jesus Christ. The Beatitudes: What must we do, Father? Look, read the Beatitudes: that will do you good. If you want to know what you actually have to do, read Matthew Chapter 25, which is the standard by which we will be judged. With these two things you have the action plan: the Beatitudes and Matthew 25. You do not need to read anything else.

(Meeting with young people from Argentina, July 25, 2013)



od calls you to make definitive choices, and he has a plan for each of you: to discover that plan and to respond to your vocation is to move toward personal fulfilment. God calls each of us to be holy, to live his life, but he has a particular path for each one of us. Some are called to holiness through family life in the sacrament of Marriage. Today, there are those who say that marriage is out of fashion. Is it out of fashion? In a culture of relativism and the ephemeral, many preach the importance of “enjoying” the moment. They say that it is not worth making a life-long commitment, making a definitive decision, “for ever”, because we do not know what tomorrow will bring. I ask you, instead, to be revolutionaries, I ask you to swim against the tide; yes, I am asking you to rebel against this culture that sees everything as temporary and that ultimately believes you

are incapable of responsibility, that believes you are incapable of true love. I have confidence in you and I pray for you. Have the courage “to swim against the tide”. And also have the courage to be happy. The Lord calls some to be priests, to give themselves to him more fully, so as to love all people with the heart of the Good Shepherd. Some he calls to the service of others in the religious life: devoting themselves in monasteries to praying for the good of the world, and in various areas of the apostolate, giving of themselves for the sake of all, especially those most in need. I will never forget that day, 21 September – I was 17 years old – when, after stopping in the Church of San José de Flores to go to confession, I first heard God calling me. Do not be afraid of what God asks of you! It is worth saying “yes” to God. In him we find joy!

(Address to the volunteers of the WYD, July 28, 2013)

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o be called by Jesus, to be called to evangelize, and third: to be Called to promote the culture of encounter – In many places, generally speaking, due to the economic humanism that has been imposed in the world, the culture of exclusion, of rejection, is spreading. There is no place for the elderly or for the unwanted child; there is no time for that poor person in the street. At times, it seems that for some people, human relations are regulated by two modern “dogmas”: efficiency and pragmatism. Dear Bishops, priests, religious and you, seminarians who are preparing for ministry: have the courage to go against the tide of this culture. Be courageous! Remember this, which helps me a great deal and on which I meditate frequently: take the First Book of Maccabees, and recall how many of the people wanted to adapt to the culture of the time: “No …! Leave us alone! Let us eat of

everything, like the others do… Fine, yes to the Law, but not every part of it …”. And they ended up abandoning the faith and placing themselves in the current of that culture. Have the courage to go against the tide of this culture of efficiency, this culture of waste. Encountering and welcoming everyone, solidarity – a word that is being hidden by this culture, as if it were a bad word – solidarity and fraternity: these are what make our society truly human. Be servants of communion and of the culture of encounter! I would like you to be almost obsessed about this. Be so without being presumptuous, imposing “our truths”, but rather be guided by the humble yet joyful certainty of those who have been found, touched and transformed by the Truth who is Christ, ever to be proclaimed (cf. Lk 24:13-35).

(Homily of Pope Francis during the Mass with bishops, priest, religious and seminarians, Cathedral of San Sebastián, July 27, 2013)



hat has the Cross given to those who have gazed upon it and to those who have touched it? What has the Cross left in each one of us? You see, it gives us a treasure that no one else can give: the certainty of the faithful love which God has for us. A love so great that it enters into our sin and forgives it, enters into our suffering and gives us the strength to bear it. It is a love which enters into death to conquer it and to save us. The Cross of Christ contains all the love of God; there we find his immeasurable mercy. This

is a love in which we can place all our trust, in which we can believe. Dear young people, let us entrust ourselves to Jesus, let us give ourselves over to him (cf. Lumen Fidei, 16), because he never disappoints anyone! Only in Christ crucified and risen can we find salvation and redemption. With him, evil, suffering, and death do not have the last word, because he gives us hope and life: he has transformed the Cross from being an instrument of hate, defeat and death to being a sign of love, victory, triumph and life.

(Speech of Pope Francis during the Way of the Cross with the young people, Waterfront of Copacabana, July 26, 2013)

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he field. Beyond being a place of sowing, the field is a training ground. Jesus asks us to follow him for life, he asks us to be his disciples, to “play on his team”. Most of you love sports! Here in Brazil, as in other countries, football is a national passion. Right? Now, what do players do when they are asked to join a team? They have to train, and to train a lot! The same is true of our lives as the Lord’s disciples. Saint Paul, describing Christians, tells us: “athletes deny themselves all sorts of things; they do this to win a crown of leaves that withers, but we a crown that is imperishable” (1 Cor 9:25). Jesus offers us something bigger than the World Cup! Something bigger than the World Cup! Jesus offers us the possibility of a fruitful life, a life of happiness; he also offers us a future with him, an endless future, in eternal life. That is what Jesus offers us. But he asks us to pay admission, and the cost of admission is that we train ourselves “to get in shape”, so that we can face every situation in life undaunted, bearing witness to our faith, by talking with

him in prayer . Father, are you asking us all to pray? I ask you all … but reply in the silence of your heart, not aloud: do I pray? Do I speak with Jesus, or am I frightened of silence? Do I allow the Holy Spirit to speak in my heart? Do I ask Jesus: what do you want me to do, what do you want from my life? This is training. Ask Jesus, speak to Jesus, and if you make a mistake in your life, if you should fall, if you should do something wrong, don’t be afraid. Jesus, look at what I have done, what must I now do? Speak continually with Jesus, in the good times and in the bad, when you do right, and when you do wrong. Do not fear him! This is prayer. And through this, you train yourselves in dialogue with Jesus, in this path of being missionary disciples. By the sacraments, which make his life grow within us and conform us to Christ. By loving one another, learning to listen, to understand, to forgive, to be accepting and to help others, everybody, with no one excluded or ostracized. Dear young people, be true “athletes of Christ”!

(Speech during the prayer vigil with the Young people, Waterfront of Copacabana, July 27, 2013)



opefulness. The second reading of the Mass presents a dramatic scene: a woman – an image of Mary and the Church – is being pursued by a Dragon – the devil – who wants to devour her child. But the scene is not one of death but of life, because God intervenes

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and saves the child (cf. Rev 12:13a, 15-16a). How many difficulties are present in the life of every individual, among our people, in our communities; yet as great as these may seem, God never allows us to be overwhelmed by them. In the face of those moments of discou-

ragement we experience in life, in our efforts to evangelize or to embody our faith as parents within the family, I would like to say forcefully: Always know in your heart that God is by your side; he never abandons you! Let us never lose hope! Let us never allow it to die in our hearts! The “dragon”, evil, is present in our history, but it does not have the upper hand. The one with the upper hand is God, and God is our hope! It is true that nowadays, to some extent, everyone, including our young people, feels attracted by the many idols which take the place of God and appear to offer hope: money, success, power, pleasure. Often a growing sense of loneliness and emptiness in the hearts of many people leads them to seek satisfaction in these ephemeral idols. Dear brothers and sisters, let us be lights of hope! Let us maintain a positive outlook on reality. Let us encourage the generosity which is typical of the young and help them to work actively in building a better world. Young people are a powerful engine for the Church and for society. They do not need material things alone; also and above all, they need to have held up to them those nonmaterial values which are the spiritual heart of a people, the memory of a people. In this Shrine, which is part of the memory of Brazil,

we can almost read those values: spirituality, generosity, solidarity, perseverance, fraternity, joy; they are values whose deepest root is in the Christian faith. The second attitude: openness to being surprised by God. Anyone who is a man or a woman of hope – the great hope which faith gives us – knows that even in the midst of difficulties God acts and he surprises us. The history of this Shrine is a good example: three fishermen, after a day of catching no fish, found something unexpected in the waters of the Parnaíba River: an image of Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception. Whoever would have thought that the site of a fruitless fishing expedition would become the place where all Brazilians can feel that they are children of one Mother? God always surprises us, like the new wine in the Gospel we have just heard. God always saves the best for us. But he asks us to let ourselves be surprised by his love, to accept his surprises. Let us trust God! Cut off from him, the wine of joy, the wine of hope, runs out. If we draw near to him, if we stay with him, what seems to be cold water, difficulty, sin, is changed into the new wine of friendship with him.

(Homily during the Holy Mass in the Basilica of Our Lady of Aparecida, July 24, 2013)



would also like to tell you that the Church, the “advocate of justice and defender of the poor in the face of intolerable social and economic inequalities which cry to heaven” (Aparecida Document, 395), wishes to offer her support for every initiative that can signify genuine development for every person and for the whole person. Dear friends, it is certainly necessary to give bread to the hungry – this is an act of justice. But there is also a deeper hunger,

the hunger for a happiness that only God can satisfy, the hunger for dignity. There is neither real promotion of the common good nor real human development when there is ignorance of the fundamental pillars that govern a nation, its non-material goods: life, which is a gift of God, a value always to be protected and promoted; the family, the foundation of coexistence and a remedy against social fragmentation; integral education, which cannot be reduced to the mere

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transmission of information for purposes of generating profit; health, which must seek the integral well-being of the person, including the spiritual dimension, essential for human balance and healthy coexistence; security, in the conviction that violence can be overcome only by changing human hearts. (…) Today, to all of you, especially to the residents of this Community of Varginha, I

say: you are not alone, the Church is with you, the Pope is with you. I carry each of you in my heart and I make my own the intentions that you carry deep within you: thanksgiving for joys, pleas for help in times of difficulty, a desire for consolation in times of grief and suffering. I entrust all this to the intercession of Our Lady of Aparecida, Mother of all the poor of Brazil, and with great affection I impart my blessing.

(Speech during the visit to the community of Varginha, July 25, 2013)



relentless process of globalization, an often uncontrolled process of intense urbanization, has promised great things. Many people have been captivated by their potential, which of course contains positive elements as, for example, the shortening of distance, the drawing closer of peoples and cultures, the diffusion of information and of services. On the other hand, however, many are living the negative effects of these realities without realizing how they affect a proper vision of man and of the world. This generates enormous confusion and an emptiness which people are unable to explain, regarding the purpose of life, personal disintegration, the loss of the experience of belonging to a “home” and the absence of personal space and strong personal ties. And since there is no one to accompany them or to show them with his or her own life the true way, many have sought shortcuts, because the standards set by Mother Church seem to be asking too much. There are also those who recognize the ideal of man and of life as proposed by the Church, but they do not have the audacity to embrace it. They think that this ideal is too lofty for them, that it is beyond their abilities, and that the goal the Church sets is unattainable. Nonetheless they cannot

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live without having at least something, even a poor imitation of what seems too grand and distant. With disappointed hearts, they then go off in search of something which will lead them even further astray, or which brings them to a partial belonging that, ultimately, does not fulfill their lives. The great sense of abandonment and solitude, of not even belonging to oneself, which often results from this situation, is too painful to hide. Some kind of release is necessary. There is always the option of complaining. But even complaint acts like a boomerang; it comes back and ends up increasing one’s unhappiness. Few people are still capable of hearing the voice of pain; the best we can do is to anaesthetize it. From this point of view, we need a Church capable of walking at people’s side, of doing more than simply listening to them; a Church which accompanies them on their journey; a Church able to make sense of the “night” contained in the flight of so many of our brothers and sisters from Jerusalem; a Church which realizes that the reasons why people leave also contain reasons why they can eventually return. But we need to know how to interpret, with courage, the larger picture. Jesus warmed the hearts of the disciples of Emmaus.

(Speech during the meeting with the bishops of Brazil, July 27, 2013)



eeing this Cathedral full of Bishops, priests, seminarians, and men and women religious from the whole world, I think of the Psalmist’s words from today’s Mass: “Let the peoples praise you, O God” (Ps 66). We are indeed here to praise the Lord, and we do so reaffirming our desire to be his instruments so that not only some peoples may praise God, but all. With the same parrhesia of Paul and Barnabas, we want to proclaim the Gospel to our young people, so that they may encounter Christ and build a more fraternal world. I wish to reflect with you on three aspects of our vocation: we are called by God, called to proclaim the Gospel, and called to promote the culture of encounter. Called by God – I believe that it is important to rekindle constantly an awareness of our divine vocation, which we often take for granted in the midst of our many daily responsibilities: as Jesus says, “You did not choose me, but I chose you” (Jn 15:16). This means returning to the source of our calling. For this reason, a Bishop, a priest, a consecrated person, a seminarian cannot be “forgetful”: it would mean losing the vital link to that first moment of our journey. Ask for the grace, ask the Virgin for the grace, she who had a good memory; ask for the grace to preserve the memory of this first call. We were called by God and we were called to be with Jesus (cf. Mk 3:14), united with him. In reality, this living, this abiding in Christ

marks all that we are and all that we do. It is precisely this “life in Christ” that ensures our apostolate is effective, that our service is fruitful: “I appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit be authentic” (cf. Jn 15:16). It is not creativity, however pastoral it may be, or meetings or planning that ensure our fruitfulness, even if these are greatly helpful. But what assures our fruitfulness is our being faithful to Jesus, who says insistently: “Abide in me and I in you” (Jn 15:4). And we know well what that means: to contemplate him, to worship him, to embrace him, in our daily encounter with him in the Eucharist, in our life of prayer, in our moments of adoration; it means to recognize him present and to embrace him in those most in need. “Being with” Christ does not mean isolating ourselves from others. Rather, it is a “being with” in order to go forth and encounter others. Here I wish to recall some words of Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta. She said: “We must be very proud of our vocation because it gives us the opportunity to serve Christ in the poor. It is in the favelas, ... in the villas miseria, that one must go to seek and to serve Christ. We must go to them as the priest presents himself at the altar, with joy” (Mother’s Instructions, I, p. 80). Jesus is the Good Shepherd; he is our true treasure. Please, let us not erase Jesus from our lives! Let us ground our hearts ever more in him (cf. Lk 12:34).

( Homily during the Mass with bishop, priest, religious and seminarians, Cathedral of San Sebastián, July 27, 2013)

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oday the Church celebrates the parents of the Virgin Mary, the grandparents of Jesus, Saints Joachim and Anne. In their home, Mary came into the world, accompanied by the extraordinary mystery of the Immaculate Conception. Mary grew up in the home of Joachim and Anne; she was surrounded by their love and faith: in their home she learned to listen to the Lord and to follow his will. Saints Joachim and Anne were part of a long chain of people who had transmitted their faith and love for God, expressed in the warmth and love of family life, down to Mary, who received the Son of God in her womb and who gave him to the world, to us. How precious is the family as the privileged place for transmitting the faith! Speaking about family life, I would like to say one thing: today, as Brazil and the Church around the world celebrate this feast of Saints Joachim and Anne, Grandparents Day is also

being celebrated. How important grandparents are for family life, for passing on the human and religious heritage which is so essential for each and every society! How important it is to have intergenerational exchanges and dialogue, especially within the context of the family. The Aparecida Document says, “Children and the elderly build the future of peoples: children because they lead history forward, the elderly because they transmit the experience and wisdom of their lives” (No. 447). This relationship and this dialogue between generations is a treasure to be preserved and strengthened! In this World Youth Day, young people wish to acknowledge and honour their grandparents. They salute them with great affection. Grandparents. Let us salute grandparents. Young people salute their grandparents with great affection and they thank them for the ongoing witness of their wisdom.

(Address from the central balcony of the Archbishop’s residence, Rio de Janeiro, July 26, 2013)



e are the ones responsible for training new generations, helping them to be knowledgeable in economic and political affairs, and solidly grounded in ethical values. The future demands a rehabilitation of politics here and now, a rehabilitation of politics, which is one of the highest forms of charity. The future also demands a humanistic vision of the economy and a politics capable of ensuring greater and more effective participation on the part of the people, eliminating forms of elitism and eradicating poverty. No one should be denied what is necessary and everyone should be gua-

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ranteed dignity, fraternity and solidarity: this is the road that is proposed. In the days of the prophet Amos, God’s frequent warning was already being heard: “They sell the righteous for silver and the needy for a pair of sandals – they … trample down the head of the poor into the dust of the earth and push the afflicted out of the way” (Am 2:6-7). The outcry, the call for justice, continues to be heard even today. Anyone exercising a role of leadership – allow me to say, anyone whom life has anointed as a leader – needs to have practical goals and to seek specific means to attain them. At the same

time, there is always the risk of disappointment, resentment and indifference, if our plans and goals do not materialize. Here I would appeal to the dynamic of hope that inspires us to keep pressing on, to employ all our energies and abilities on behalf of those for whom we work, accepting results, making it possible to strike out on new paths, being generous even without apparent results, yet keeping hope alive, with the constancy and courage that comes from accepting a vocation as leader and guide. Leadership also means making the most just decision after having considered all the options from the standpoint of personal responsibility and concern for the common good. This is the way to go to the heart of the evils of a society and to overcome them, also with the

boldness of courageous and free actions. It is our responsibility, within the limits of the possible, to embrace all of reality, observing, pondering, evaluating, in order to make decisions in the present but with an eye to the future, reflecting on the consequences of our decisions. To act responsibly is to see one’s own actions in the light of other people’s rights and God’s judgment. This ethical sense appears today as an unprecedented historic challenge, we must search for it and we must enshrine it within our society. Beyond scientific and technical competence, the present situation also demands a sense of moral obligation expressed in a social and deeply fraternal exercise of responsibility.

(Speech during the meeting with Brazil’s leaders, Municipal Theatre, Rio de Janeiro, July 27, 2013)

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“Franciscan peace is not something saccharine. Hardly! That is not the real Saint Francis! Nor is it a kind of pantheistic harmony with forces of the cosmos… That is not Franciscan either! It is not Franciscan, but a notion that some people have invented! The peace of Saint Francis is the peace of Christ, and it is found by those who ‘take up’ their ‘yoke,’” said Pope Francis in his homily in St. Francis Square during his visit to Assisi.

give you thanks, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, for you have hidden these things from the wise and understanding, and revealed them to babes” (Mt 11:25). Peace and all good to each and every one of you! With this Franciscan greeting I thank you for being here, in this Square so full of history and faith, to pray together. Today, I too have come, like countless other pilgrims, to give thanks to the Father for all that he wished to reveal to one of the “little ones” mentioned in today’s Gospel: Francis, the son of a wealthy merchant of Assisi. His encounter with Jesus led him to strip himself

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of an easy and carefree life in order to espouse “Lady Poverty” and to live as a true son of our heavenly Father. This decision of Saint Francis was a radical way of imitating Christ: he clothed himself anew, putting on Christ, who, though he was rich, became poor in order to make us rich by his poverty (cf. 2 Cor 8:9). In all of Francis’ life, love for the poor and the imitation of Christ in his poverty were inseparably united, like the two sides of the same coin. What does Saint Francis’s witness tell us today? What does he have to say to us, not merely with words – that is easy enough – but by his life?

The cross does not speak to us about defeat and failure; paradoxically, it speaks to us about a death which is life, a death which gives life, for it speaks to us of love, the love of God incarnate, a love which does not die, but triumphs over evil and death. When we let the crucified Jesus gaze upon us, we are re-created, we become “a new creation”. 1. The first thing he tells us is this: that being a Christian means having a living relationship with the person of Jesus; it means putting on Christ, being conformed to him. Where did Francis’s journey to Christ begin? It began with the gaze of the crucified Jesus. With letting Jesus look at us at the very moment that he gives his life for us and draws us to himself. Francis experienced this in a special way in the Church of San Damiano, as he prayed before the cross which I too will have an opportunity to venerate. On that cross, Jesus is depicted not as dead, but alive! Blood is flowing from his wounded hands, feet and side, but that blood speaks of life. Jesus’ eyes are not closed but open, wide open: he looks at us in a way that touches our hearts. The cross does not speak to us about defeat and failure; paradoxically, it speaks to us about a death which is life, a death which gives life, for it

Love one another as I have loved you (cf. Jn 13:34; 15:12). This yoke cannot be borne with arrogance, presumption or pride, but only with meekness and humbleness of heart.

speaks to us of love, the love of God incarnate, a love which does not die, but triumphs over evil and death. When we let the crucified Jesus gaze upon us, we are re-created, we become “a new creation”. Everything else starts with this: the experience of transforming grace, the experience of being loved for no merits of our own, in spite of our being sinners. That is why Saint Francis could say with Saint Paul: “Far be it for me to glory except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ” (Gal 6:14). We turn to you, Francis, and we ask you: Teach us to remain before the cross, to let the crucified Christ gaze upon us, to let ourselves be forgiven, and recreated by his love.

Saint Francis of Assisi bears witness to the need to respect all that God has created and as he created it, without manipulating and destroying creation; rather to help it grow, to become more beautiful and more like what God created it to be.

2. In today’s Gospel we heard these words: “Come to me, all who labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart” (Mt 11:28-29). This is the second witness that Francis gives us: that everyone who follows Christ receives true peace, the peace that Christ alone can give, a peace which the world cannot give. Many people, when they think of Saint Francis, think of peace; very few people however go deeper. What is the peace which Francis received, experienced and

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Saint Francis witnesses to respect for everyone, he testifies that each of us is called to protect our neighbour, that the human person is at the centre of creation, at the place where God – our creator – willed that we should be. Not at the mercy of the idols we have created! lived, and which he passes on to us? It is the peace of Christ, which is born of the greatest love of all, the love of the cross. It is the peace which the Risen Jesus gave to his disciples when he stood in their midst (cf. Jn 20:19-20). Franciscan peace is not something saccharine. Hardly! That is not the real Saint Francis! Nor is it a kind of pantheistic harmony with forces of the cosmos… That is not Franciscan either! It is not Franciscan, but a notion that some people have invented! The peace of Saint Francis is the peace of Christ, and it is found by those who “take up” their “yoke”, namely, Christ’s commandment: Love one another as I have loved you (cf. Jn 13:34; 15:12). This yoke cannot be borne with arrogance, presumption or pride, but only with meekness and humbleness of heart. We turn to you, Francis, and we ask you: Teach us to be “instruments of peace”, of that peace which has its source in God, the peace which Jesus has brought us. 3. Francis began the Canticle of the Creatures with these words: “Praised may you be, Most High, All-powerful God, good Lord… by all your creatures (FF, 1820). Love for all creation, for its harmony. Saint Francis of Assisi bears witness to the need to respect all that God has created and as he created it, without manipulating and destroying creation; rather to help it grow, to become more beautiful and more like what God created it to be. And above all,

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Saint Francis witnesses to respect for everyone, he testifies that each of us is called to protect our neighbour, that the human person is at the centre of creation, at the place where God – our creator – willed that we should be. Not at the mercy of the idols we have created! Harmony and peace! Francis was a man of harmony and peace. From this City of Peace, I repeat with all the strength and the meekness of love: Let us respect creation, let us not be instruments of destruction! Let us respect each human being. May there be an end to armed conflicts which cover the earth with blood; may the clash of arms be silenced; and everywhere may hatred yield to love, injury to pardon, and discord to unity. Let us listen to the cry of all those who are weeping, who are suffering and who are dying because of violence, terrorism or war, in the Holy Land, so dear to Saint Francis, in Syria, throughout the Middle East and everywhere in the world. We turn to you, Francis, and we ask you: Obtain for us God’s gift of harmony, peace and respect for creation! Finally, I cannot forget the fact that today Italy celebrates Saint Francis as her patron saint. I greet all the Italian people, represented by the Head of Government, who is present among us. The traditional offering of oil for the votive lamp, which this year is given by the Region of Umbria, is an expression of this. Let us pray for Italy, that everyone will always work for the common good, and look more to what unites us, rather than what divides us. I make my own the prayer of Saint Francis for Assisi, for Italy and for the world: “I pray to you, Lord Jesus Christ, Father of mercies: Do not look upon our ingratitude, but always keep in mind the surpassing goodness which you have shown to this City. Grant that it may always be the home of men and women who know you in truth and who glorify your most holy and glorious name, now and for all ages. Amen.” (Assisi, October 4, 2013)



he joy of the gospel fills the hearts and lives of all who encounter Jesus. Those who accept his offer of salvation are set free from sin, sorrow, inner emptiness and loneliness. With Christ joy is constantly born anew. In this

Exhortation I wish to encourage the Christian faithful to embark upon a new chapter of evangelization marked by this joy, while pointing out new paths for the Church’s journey in years to come. (Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii gaudium, n°1)



he great danger in today’s world, pervaded as it is by consumerism, is the desolation and anguish born of a complacent yet covetous heart, the feverish pursuit of frivolous pleasures, and a blunted conscience. Whenever our interior life becomes caught up in its own interests and concerns, there is no longer room for others, no place for the poor. God’s voice is

no longer heard, the quiet joy of his love is no longer felt, and the desire to do good fades. This is a very real danger for believers too. Many fall prey to it, and end up resentful, angry and listless. That is no way to live a dignified and fulfilled life; it is not God’s will for us, nor is it the life in the Spirit which has its source in the heart of the risen Christ. (Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii gaudium, n°2)



hose who have fallen into this worldliness look on from above and afar, they reject the prophecy of their brothers and sisters, they discredit those who raise questions, they constantly point out the mistakes of others and they are obsessed by appearances. Their hearts are open only to the limited horizon of their own immanence and interests, and as a consequence they neither learn from their sins nor are they genuinely open to forgiveness. This is a tremendous corruption disguised

as a good. We need to avoid it by making the Church constantly go out from herself, keeping her mission focused on Jesus Christ, and her commitment to the poor. God save us from a worldly Church with superficial spiritual and pastoral trappings! This stifling worldliness can only be healed by breathing in the pure air of the Holy Spirit who frees us from selfcentredness cloaked in an outward religiosity bereft of God. Let us not allow ourselves to be robbed of the Gospel! (Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii gaudium, n°97)

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October 13

THE CHURCH AND THE WORLD CONSECRATION OF THE WORLD TO THE IMMACULATE HEART OF MARY, BEFORE THE STATUE OF OUR LADY OF FATIMA On October 13, near to end of the Year of Faith, Pope Francis consecrated the world to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, before the statue of the Virgin of Fatima belonging to the Shrine in Portugal, which was specially brought from Cova de Iria for this historical occasion.

Prayer said by the Holy Father at the foot of the Statue Blessed Virgin Mary of Fatima, with renewed gratitude for your motherly presence  we join in the voice of all generations that call you blessed. We celebrate in you the great works of God,  who never tires of lowering himself in mercy over humanity,  afflicted by evil and wounded by sin,  to heal and to save it. Accept with the benevolence of a Mother  this act of entrustment that we make in faith today,  before this your image, beloved to us. We are certain that each one of us is precious in your eyes  and that nothing in our hearts has estranged you. May that we allow your sweet gaze  to reach us and the perpetual warmth of your smile. Guard our life with your embrace:  bless and strengthen every desire for good;  give new life and nourishment to faith;  sustain and enlighten hope;  awaken and animate charity;  guide us all on the path to holiness. Teach us your own special love for the little and the poor,  for the excluded and the suffering,  for sinners and the wounded of heart:  gather all people under you protection  and give us all to your beloved Son, our Lord Jesus. Amen.

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The Pope received the Virgin of Fatima at St. Peter’s square On Saturday 12, carried by a helicopter of the Italian Air force, the statue of the Virgin of Fatima arrived at the Vatican’s heliport , from where she was taken in procession through the gardens of the Vatican to the Monastery Mater Ecclesiae located about 700 meters from the landing place, where the Pope emeritus, Benedict XVI, lives. The image stopped at the Chapel of S.S. Benedict XVI for a short moment of personal prayer, before going to Saint Martha House where it was welcomed by Pope Francis. That same Saturday, the Holy Father presided over the ceremony and pronounced a Marian homily during the reception of the image at St. Peter’s Square, where thousands of faithful waved white handkerchiefs. The statue of Our Lady of Fatima was carried by four Heralds of the Gospel, and escorted by the Swiss Guard up to the central obelisk of the square. There the sediari pontifici

that is, those who carried the Pope’s sedia gestatoria when this was still done, started to carry the image of the Virgin Mary. The Pope with his white habit came out to the square in the midst of applause, while the choir of the Pontifical Sistine Chapel sang “The 13th of May.” The Holy Father approached and kissed the image. Thereafter the Via Matris was prayed, a Marian prayer of seven stations, combined with music and instruments such as the harp. Thereafter the image was taken to the Roman sanctuary of the Divine Love, and from there, at 7:00 pm local time, in direct connection with the other ten sanctuaries of the world, the Rosary was prayed and the vigil With Mary beyond the night began. All this took place as an event within the framework of the Year of Faith, organized by the Pontifical Council for the new Evangelization.


Just as Christ crucified and the grieving Virgin are associated with God’s plan for salvation, the Liturgy and popular piety are also thusly linked. Just as Christ is “the man of pains,” through which God has been pleased in “the reconciliation of every human being with Him: those in heaven and those on earth making peace by the blood of his cross,” thus Mary is “the woman of pain,” that God has wished to associate with his Son, as mother and participant in his Passion (socia Passionis). As from the days of Christ’s childhood, all of the Virgin’s life, participating in the rejection suffered by her Son, passed under the sign of the sword. However, the piety of the Christian people has shown seven main episodes in the painful life of our Mother and has considered them as “the seven pains” of the Holy Mother Mary. Thus, according to the model of the Via Crucis, the exercise of the piety of the Via Matris dolorosae or simply Via Matris was born and also approved by the Apostolic See. Since the 16th Century there were incipient forms of the Via Matris, but its current form did not appear until the 19th Century. The fundamental intuition is to consider the Virgin’s whole life, from the prophetic announcement of Simeon until the death and burial of her Son, as a road of faith and pain; a path articulated in seven “stations” that correspond to the “seven pains” of the Mother of the Lord. The exercise of piety of the Via Matris harmonizes well with certain subjects of the Lenten itinerary. As the pain of the Virgin has its cause in the rejection suffered by Christ by men, the Via Matris continually and necessarily calls to the mystery of Christ, suffering servant of the Father, rejected by his own people. And also calls to the mystery of the Church: the stations of the Via Matris are stages on the road of faith and pain in which the Virgin has preceded the Church, and that the latter must walk until the end of times. The Via Matris has “Piety” as a maximum expression, an inexhaustible subject of Christian art since the Middle Ages.

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Francis to Our Lady of Fatima:

“Mary, we thank you for your faith” Parts of Pope Francis’ homily at the foot of the image of the Virgin at the Shrine of Fatima, during the Marian Day that is a part of the Year of Faith. (…) The first element of his faith is this: The faith of Mary unties the knot of sin (re.Ig.56). What does this mean? The conciliar Fathers have taken this expression from St. Irenaeus that says: “The knot of Eve’s disobedience was untied by Mary. What the virgin Eve tied up with her lack of faith, the Virgin May untied with her faith.” (…) Something like this occurs with our relationship with God. When we don’t listen to him, we don’t follow his will, we commit material acts in which we show our lack of faith in him—and this is sin—, something like a knot is formed within us. These knots take away our peace and serenity. They are dangerous, because several knots can turn into a skein, that is always more painful and more difficult to untie. But for God’s mercy nothing is impossible. Even the worst knots may be unmade by his grace. And Mary, who with her “yes” opened the door to God by undoing the knot of the old disobedience, she is the mother that with patience and love takes us

to God, so he can undo the knots of our soul with the mercy of the Father. (…) But what has happened with the Virgin Mother in a unique way, also happens to us at a spiritual level when we welcome God’s Word with a good and sincere heart, and we put it in practice. It is as if God becomes flesh in us. He comes to live within us, because he makes his home in those who love and obey his Word. (…) This is not easy to understand but it is easy to feel in the heart. (…) Mary’s faith then faced misunderstanding and contempt; and when Jesus’ “hour” came, the hour of passion: Mary’s faith was then the light that was on in the night. That little lamp shone in the middle of the night. Mary stayed awake all night during Holy Saturday. Her flame, small but clear, was alive until the dawn of the Resurrection; and when the news arrived that the sepulcher was empty, her heart was full with the joy of faith, the Christian faith in the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Faith always brings us happiness. and it is the mother of happiness that teaches us to live and walk on the road of joy and to live this joy. This is the apex, this joy of the encounter of Jesus and Mary. This is the highest point of the road of Mary’s faith and that of the entire Church.

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Pope Pius XII consecrated the world several times to Our Lady, but it was Pope John Paul II that in 1984, in front of the image of Our Lady of Fatima, in Rome, consecrated the world and Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, together with the Bishops of the whole world. Later on, the mystic Lucia confirmed that this act of consecration was carried out in line with the request of Our Lady. In the year 2000, during the Jubilee of the Bishops, John Paul II consecrated the new millennium to Our Lady, once again in front of this same statue in Rome. On May 13 of this year, Pope Francis requested the then Cardinal Patriarch of Lisbon, José Policarpo, to consecrate his ministry to Our Lady of Fatima, which meant “to give Pope Francis to Mary with trust, for Her to help him, protect him and guide him; for Her to be his example of devotion to God, of listening attentively to his Word, to be open to his will, to obedience to the Holy Spirit, to prayer”, said Father Carecinha, Rector of the Shrine of Fatima.

April 27, 2014

Canonization of John XXIII and John Paul II Last September 30, Pope Francis informed the faithful that the date for the canonization of Blessed John Paul II and Blessed John XXIII shall be on April 27, 2014 in Rome, Divine Mercy Sunday, a feast day established by John Paul II himself, and the date on which the Holy Father died, April 2, 2005. In the case of John XXIII, Pope Francis authorized the process without the need of a second miracle. The first miracle of John Paul II that was taken into consideration for his canonization was the miraculous recovery of a French nun that suffered an advanced and irreversible Parkinson disease. The second miracle required and approved was the recovery of a woman in Costa Rica who suffered from a cerebral aneurism.

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A name that the faithful long to see sanctified is that of blessed John Paul II (Karol Józef Wojtyla), the pontiff of Polish origin born in 1920, and who exercised the Papacy from 1978 to 2005. His proclamation as Blessed was one of the quickest in history, since only six years after his death the emeritus Pope Benedict XVI proclaimed him Blessed for his outstanding virtues, and by attributing to him the miraculous healing of a French nun who suffered with Parkinson’s disease. Now the second miracle has been confirmed through the inexplicable healing in 2011 of Mrs. Floribeth Mora in Costa Rica, who with severe brain damage invoked him with faith. In this case it is said to be a double miracle, because thanks to the supernatural action of God through the Blessed Pope, the entire family recovered their faith. The devotees of the “Good Pope,” as John XXIII is known, will be extremely happy, since Francis has dispensed the realization of a new miracle to be able to name him a Saint, by approving a favorable vote of the Cardinals and Bishops gathered in ordinary session. Although the acknowledged virtues or Christian teachings of a person alone are not enough in declaring him/her a saint in the canonization process since a miracle is also required, the Holy Father, availing himself of his most personal attributions as Supreme Pontiff, without mediating any explanation whatsoever that is not his own criterion, may dispense from the miracle whom he wishes to raise in a final form to the altars. This is what he has just done with John XXIII. On his part Cardinal Angelo Amato, Prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, responded to the question raised by the Vatican newspaper L’Observatore Romano: “What meaning is there, in Pope Francis’ point of view, in canonizing John XXIII and John Paul II together?” saying that “both Pontiffs have two common references: the Council (Vatican II) as an evangelical charity and event for peace, and the Church as a generous and ready

mother that approaches every human being to give consolation, help, support, and hope.” The Cardinal recalled that “John is the good Pope, father of all, Catholics and nonCatholics. He embraced humanity and blessed it. John Paul II is the Pope that in his hundreds of trips visited the whole world, becoming the messenger of peace and the promoter of life, of fraternity among peoples, of generous welcome to the needy.” Moreover, the Prefect explained that “both were protagonists of the Second Vatican Council. Secondly, both have reached the heroism of Christian virtues, that is, sanctity. Sanctity is their essential feature. Sanctity that means living the good life of the Gospel in the situations in which Providence put them.” “For John XXIII it was answering with courage and diligence the aspiration to convoke an ecumenical Council. For John Paul II it was to update Vatican II, revealing its rich theological, liturgical, pastoral, devotional, canonical, and catechistical implications.” For Cardinal Amato, “John XIII opened the road to aggiornamento. John Paul II, continuing the pioneering work of Paul VI, took to subsequent developments the energy of the aggiornamento. Today the Church lives from this double inheritance, the simplicity of the Good Pope and the dynamism of the merciful and patient Pope. The Cardinal remembered, thereafter, the great importance of the Virgin Mary in both pontificates, and highlighted that John Paul II thanked the Mother of God for having saved him from the attempt on his life on May 13, 1981 in Saint Peter’s Square. The Prefect of the Vatican Congregation highlighted that with the canonization of both of these Popes the list of “wise and saintly shepherds, the venerable Pius XII, (the future) Saint John XXIII, the blessed Paul VI, the serf of God John Paul I, (the future) Saint John Paul II, is enriched. They are Pontiffs that have made their Magisterium coincide with the sanctity of life.”

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Prayer of Paul VI 7 features for faith Lord, make me see. Lord, make me believe. But… 1. Lord, make my faith FULL

Without reserve, That it may penetrate my thought And my way of judging divine matters And human matters too. 2. Lord, make my faith FREE

That it may have the personal support Of my commitment, that I accept renunciation And the duties that it implies And that it be the faithful reflection Of the style of my personality.

3. Lord, make my faith TRUE

True for coherence Among external trials And the inner witness of the Holy Spirit. True for its light that ensures, For its conclusions that give peace, For its assimilation to give rest.

4. Lord, let my faith be STRONG

Dispose it to prayer with God And to conversation with men, So it may irradiate in sacred and profane relationships The inner happiness of Your presence. 6. Lord, make my faith ACTIVE

May it give charity A reason for its moral expansion So it may constitute a True friendship with you, And that in works, in suffering While waiting for your final revelation, May it suppose a continual search for You, A continual testimony, An uninterrupted food for hope.

Do not let it be frightened by the contradiction Of the problems that fill the experience of Our lives. Eager for light, 7. Lord, make my faith HUMBLE Let it not be scared by the opposition of Let it not have the arrogance of being founded Those who discuss it, attack it, reject it, who On the experience of my thought or deny it, My feeling, but may it surrender to the But let it be fortified in the intimate experience Testimony of the Holy Spirit Of Your truth. And may it not have better guarantees Let it resist the tiredness of criticism, Than the meekness of the tradition and Let if fortify with continual assertions The authority of the Magisterium of the Holy And overcome dialectical and spiritual Church. difficulties, Amen. In the midst of which our temporal life goes on. 5. Lord, let my faith be JOYFUL May it bring peace and calm to my spirit and

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The encyclical Pacem in terris, in its 50th anniversary, is one of the most important of the Twentieth Century. It was the first to be addressed not only to Bishops or the Catholic faithful, but also to all men and women of good will. It was published in a very special moment both for the Church that had already been gathered for a year in the Council, and for the world, which in the last months (during the Cuban Missile Crisis) had experienced the fright of a destructive atomic war. John P.P. XXIII’s Encyclical offered a broad and exhaustive treatment on the subject of peace related both to the political community and the international community, touching sensitive political matters of great importance at the time. The Encyclical was promulgated by Pope John XXIII before RAI television cameras on April 11, 1963, Maundy Thursday. When presenting it to the world, the Pope said these most important words: “The Encyclical, with its face and its ecumenical features may be understood universally by all. Its elements should capture the consensus of all intelligent and free beings, even those who do not share the faith and the supernatural vision of life that is proper to the Catholic Church. It discourses in a lengthy exposition on the truth and does more than stop in polemics; it opens before the conscience of man and woman of today the riches of the teachings of the Church, at the direct service of truth.” The Encyclical is divided into four parts, preceded by the famous direction and an introduction. The first words (that give the title to the Papal document) talk about peace in the world and the need to respect the order wished by God: “Peace on Earth, the supreme aspiration of all humanity throughout history, undoubtedly cannot be established nor consolidated if one does not faithfully respect the order established by God.”

After 50 years of “Pacem in Terris” The Holy See insists on nuclear disarmament On September 16, Archbishop Dominique Mamberti, Secretary for the Relations with the States of the Holy See, intervened in the First General Conference of the International Agency for Atomic Energy (IAAE). The prelate related in his speech that this year is the 50th Anniversary of the Encyclical Pacem in Terris of the Blessed Pope John XXIII, and he invited the participants to ask themselves if “we really live in a safer and more protected world compared to previous times.” The Holy See shares the thought and feelings on the most part of men and women of good will who aspire to the total elimination of nuclear arms. Therefore—he

said—we wish to profit in this moment by renewing our invitation to the leaders of the nations to put an end to the manufacturing of nuclear arms and not to use nuclear materials for military purposes but for peaceful activities.” Monsignor Mamberti insisted on nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation as fundamental acts, including from a humanitarian point of view. He also stated “the Holy See’s deep concern for the recent and tragic situation in the Middle East.” Likewise he repeated his strong support for the efforts to create a middle-eastern zone free of nuclear arms and all other arms of mass destruction. “The zones free from nuclear arms—he underlined—are the best example of trust and safety, and the assertion that peace and safety are possible without the possession of nuclear arms.” The representative of the Holy See ended his speech recalling the recent negotiations over Iran’s nuclear program and repeated the firm conviction of the Holy See in the use of diplomatic channels to overcome current difficulties. “To overcome the different obstacles that objectively prevent mutual trust.”

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Before the faithful gathered in St. Peter’s Square last September 7, on the Day of Fasting and Prayer for Peace in Syria, the Middle East, and the World, Pope Francis begged “Let the clatter of arms end!, because “war means the failure of peace, it is always a defeat for humanity”. The Holy Father said, that just as it is expressed in the Book of Genesis, “the entire creation is an harmonious ensemble, good, but particularly human beings, created in the image and likeness of God, form a single family in which relationships are marked by true fraternity and not in word only: others are the brother and the sister that we must love, and the relationship with God, which is love, fidelity, kindness, is reflected in all human relations and gives harmony to all creation”. “God’s world is a world in which everyone feels responsible for everyone, for the good of all. Tonight, in reflection, with fasting, in prayer each one of us, all of us, must think in the deepest recesses of ourselves. Isn’t that the world I wish? Isn’t that the world we all carry in our hearts?” He asked. “The world we all wish,” said the Pope “isn’t it a world of harmony and peace within ourselves, in relationship with others, in families, in cities, in and between nations? And true freedom to choose the road to follow in this world, isn’t it precisely the one that is oriented towards the good of all and guided by love?” “Let us ask ourselves now: Is that the world we live in? Creation preserves its beauty that fills us with awe, continues to be a good work. But there is violence, division, rivalry, war. This occurs when man, the apex of creation, loses sight of the horizon of beauty and kindness, and is enclosed within his own selfishness”. “When man thinks only in himself – warned the Pope -, in his own interests and puts himself in the center, when he lets himself become fascinated by the idols of control and power, when he puts himself in the place of God, then he alters all relationships, he ruins everything; and he opens the door to violence, to indifference, and to confrontation.” Francis said “this is exactly what Genesis wishes us to understand when it narrates the sin of human beings: Man enters into conflict with himself, he realizes he is naked and hides because he is scared, he is scared of God’s

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vision. He accuses the woman, who is flesh of his flesh; he breaks the harmony with creation. He even lifts his hand against his brother to kill.” “Can we say that he passes from “harmony” to “disharmony?” No, “disharmony” does not exist; either there is harmony or one falls into chaos, where there is violence, rivalry, confrontation, fear.” “In the midst of this chaos,” said the Pope, “God asks man’s conscience: ‘Where is Abel, your brother?’ And Cain answers: ‘I do not know, am I my brother’s keeper?” This question is also addressed to us, and it would also be good for us to ask ourselves: Am I my brother’s keeper? Yes, you are your brother’s keeper. To be a human person means that you have to be the keeper of others.” However, Pope Francis was sorry to say: “When harmony is lost, there is a metamorphosis: the brother we should protect and love becomes the opponent that we have to fight, suppress.” “With each aggression and in every war we make Cain reborn. All of us! And we also extend this history of confrontation among brothers, today we also raise our hand against the one who is our brother.” The Pope also denounced that currently “we let ourselves be carried away by idols, by egoism, by our own interests, and this attitude is increasing: we have improved our weapons, our conscience has gone to sleep, we have made our reasons more subtle to justify ourselves.” “As if it were something normal, we continue to sow destruction, pain, and death. Violence and war only bring death, they talk of death. Violence and war use the language of death.” The Holy Father asked if in the middle of these circumstances “is it possible to follow another road? Can we come out of this spiral of pain and death? Can we learn to walk again through the paths of peace?” “Invoking the help of God, under the motherly gaze of the Salus populi romani, Queen of peace, I wish to answer: Yes, it is possible for all.” “I wish that each of us, from the smallest to the largest, including those that are called to rule the nations, would say: Yes, we want to walk on the path of peace.” Pope Francis said “how I would like it, if for one moment, all the men and women of good will looked at the Cross,” because in the Cross “one can read the answer of God: there, violence has not been answered with violence, death has not been answered with the language of death.” “In the silence of the Cross the clamor of arms is silenced and the language of reconciliation, of forgiveness, of dialogue, and of peace talks.” “Tonight, I would like to ask the Lord that we Christians, brothers of other religions, all men and women of good will shouted strongly: Violence and war are never the road to peace!” The Holy Father exhorted “each one to look within his own conscience and listen to the word that says: Leave behind your self- interests that atrophy your heart, overcome your indifference towards the other that makes the heart insensitive, defeat your logic of death, open yourself to dialogue, to reconciliation, look at your brother’s pain, think of the children and don’t add to their pain, hold back your hand, rebuild the harmony that has been lost, not by confrontation, but with an encounter.” Francis remembered the words of his predecessor Paul VI at the United Nations, in October 1965: “Never again one against the other; never, never again… Never again war! Never again war! “The words of peace,” said Francis, are “forgiveness, dialogue, reconciliation” both in the “beloved country of Syria, in the Middle East, in the whole world.” “Let us pray this afternoon for reconciliation and for peace, let’s contribute to reconciliation and to peace and let us all convert ourselves, in whatever place we are, let us turn into men and women of reconciliation and peace. Amen.”


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José Gabriel del Rosario Brochero died at the age of 73 years, with 47 years as a priest, exhausted, abandoned and suffering leprosy, when in Europe the sinister creaks of the first great war were beginning to be heard. The beatification cause was not quick, in spite of his large fame for sanctity that accompanied him all this time. A newspaper from Cordoba published his spiritual biography when he was still alive, and even before dying his name appeared in the primary school books of -the area. But only in the 1960’s did the cause began to take its first steps. In 2004 he climbed the first step when John Paul II declared him venerable, and on December 20, 2012 he climbed the second step with Benedict XVI, who signed the beatification decree. Formally this second stage ended today, among the icy mountain range of Cordoba, together with wrapped “gauchos,” like Brochero, in their traditional “ponchos” to protect themselves from the unexpected cold of the night. Half a century of pauses, shuffles, slowdowns, accelerations, and perplexities (about the language of Brochero, for instance, colorful and rough, as described by Cardinal Angelo Amato, Argentinean in manner). The beatification cause ended exactly during the papacy of a fellow countryman of the newly blessed and the eighth candidate for Sainthood in Argentina. There is no relationship whatsoever between the two facts: the end of Brochero’s canonical journey and the election of Bergoglio as Pope. Or at least there is no visible link, and about the invisible ones there is no reason to speculate. A miracle was missing, as the laws command, but the miracle came. A common miracle, of low profile perhaps, in Brochero’s style: A miracle for a child that suffered an extremely serious traffic accident in the year 2000, and recovered thanks to his intercession, verified by all the requirements of the severe canonical procedures. There is no relationship between the blessing and the election of two Argentineans. But there is no doubt that Pope Francis was there today in his heart, among thousands of fellowmen and pilgrims that arrived from every corner of Cordoba, some on horseback, in buses, cars, motorcycles and even on bicycle. Because Brochero is one of those priests that Francis loves, “a pioneer

Closed on the Solemnity of Saints Peter and Paul Between the 25th and 28th of June the Sacra Liturgia Congress 2013 was held at the Pontifical University of Santa Croce in Rome, organized by H.E. Msgr. Dominque Rey, Bishop of Fréjus-Toulon, France. This Congress took place within the framework of the Year of Faith, called by the now Emeritus Pope Benedict XVI and continued by Pope Francis, to commemorate the 50 years of the Second Vatican Council. The last Council of the Church dedicated one of its main documents, Sacrosanctum Concilium to the Sacred Liturgy “source and summit of Christian life” gathering and developing the pontifical Magisterium in liturgical matters of the

Pope Saint Pius X and, above all, Pius XII. The Council sought a liturgical renewal, particularly in all its external forms “in order that it be easier for the faithful to enter the Eucharistic mystery”1 and therefore, participate more actively and fruitfully. However, in spite of the exhortations of the Council, liturgical renewal has been scarce; we could even say that there has been a regression in matters of divine cult. For this reason Benedict XVI, from the inception of his pontificate, sought a truly liturgical renewal, “a reform of the reform,” picking up the multi-secular tradition of the Church, and correcting the difficulties caused in the post-Council, above all from the confusion between active participation and “external activity” in the liturgy.2 The former Pontiff, already through his writings as Car-

1 S.S. Benedict XVI. Message for the Closure of the International Eucharistic Congress, Dublin 2011. 2 Cf. Ibid.

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going out toward the geographical and existential outskirts to carry the love and mercy of God,” as he said in a message read by Cardinal Amato in his name. “He did not stay in the parochial office, he wore himself out on a mule and ended with leprosy for going out to seek the people like a priest of the street, like a stray priest of the faith.” One of those priests that Bergoglio pointed out as a model for the clergy of Buenos Aires, who go out to meet the people, that “start a conversation,” that “are not afraid of entering the night of the men that roam without aim, alone with their own disenchantment, with the disappointment of a Christianity that they already see as sterile land, barren, unable to generate sense.” Cardinal Amato highlighted each of these things during the beatification mass, sketching a profile of Brochero as a priest of the people, devoted to souls, that did everything for everyone, “a pearl of Argentinean sanctity comparable to that of the saintly priest of Ars.” The rest came by addition. An overflow of charity, that in the priest Brochero’s case took the form of an imposing civilizing work. Because José Gabriel del Rosario Brochero built roads where there weren’t any, he opened schools where the State didn’t reach, he opened clinics for the poor where the Doctors had never set a foot, homes for abandoned youth, churches, hospices, refectories, and schools. Irrigation canals, a cemetery, an aqueduct, a post office, he sketched the extension of the railway … All for the love of God. ALVER METALLI

Sacra Liturgia Congress 2013

dinal, as well as from his example of ars celebrandi, is considered the “father” of the new liturgical movement addressed to restore and return the Sacred Liturgy to its central place. Within this line, for instance, is the Motu Proprio Summorum Pontificum, regarding the use of liturgical books prior to the reform of Paul VI. Pope Benedict XVI talks of “mutual enrichment”3 between the old form and the current form of the Roman rite, a concept that has been taken up by the Sacra Liturgia 2013, both in its expositions and by offering participants both forms of the Holy Mass and the celebration of Vespers. Monsignor Dominique Rey has sought to put into practice in his dioceses this liturgical renewal wished for by the Council, through the worthy and reverent celebration of the sacred mysteries. Particularly, he has

put into practice that mutual enrichment recently evoked between the two forms of the Roman rite, inviting priests to also know and celebrate the Mass also according to the Tridentine rite, recognizing in it great spiritual and doctrinal value. Msgr. Rey asserts that “the Sacred Liturgy is in the center of the New Evangelization,” this cannot be otherwise, since evangelization is nothing else than manifesting and proclaiming the Truth of Jesus Christ and, as Romano Guardini says, the liturgy must contain all its plenitude and richness, the totality of dogmatic truths.”4 This Congress sought to reestablish this aspect of the Sacred Liturgy: to manifest the “fundamental truths of our Faith as are the Immensity, the Greatness, the Reality, and the Plenitude of God: the Unity and the Trinity;

3 Cf. S.S. Benedict XVI Letter to the Bishops Regarding the Motu Proprio Summorum Pontificum dated July 7, 2007. 4 Romano Guardini, The Spirit of the Liturgy, 1918, Chapter One.

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Providence, Omnipotence, sin, Justice, Redemption, the Rescue and Justification, Salvation and the Kingdom of God; in one word all the supreme realities and the very new.”5 In his inaugural oration, Msgr. Dominique Rey expressed that this Congress is inspired by the teaching and example of the Holy Father Benedict, “who taught us the importance of the ars celebrandi, reminding us in his apostolic exhortation Sacramentum Caritatis that everything related to the Eucharistic must be marked by beauty (…) I wish that this Congress be a tribute to the liturgical vision and achievements of our dear Emeritus Bishop of Rome, Benedict XVI, that God may reward everything that he has given us and bestow on him health and a long life.” The Sacra Liturgia 2013 has determined as an ob-

jective “to study, promote, and renew the appreciation of the formation and celebration of the liturgy, and its foundation for the Mission of the Church”. The speeches by the Cardinals Antonio Cañizares, Malcolm Ranjith, and Raymond Burke, by the Bishops Marc Aillet and Alexander Sample were noteworthy, as well as those by major liturgists such as Uwe Michael Lang, Alcuin Reid, and Nicola Bux, among others. More than 300 participants from 35 countries attended the Congress, including representatives of monastic communities such as the Abbey of Le Barroux, and was closed with the attendance of participants in the Solemnity of the Saint Apostles Peter and Paul celebrated by Pope Francis in the Basilica of Saint Peter. R.F. CARLOS HAMEL, FSJC.

5 Ibid.

“The Pietà” by Michelangelo Forty years after its restoration

On the 21st of May, 1972, The Pietà by Michelangelo, which was being exhibited in Saint Peter’s Basilica, was attacked with a hammer by a tourist who was able to elude the guards. An Australian geologist of Hungarian origin, Laszlo Toth, had severe mental problems, and threw himself against the sculpture yelling “I am Jesus Christ resurrected among the dead,” and hit the statue fifteen times, destroying the face, breaking the left arm and hurting the elbow of the sculpture so that fifty fragments splintered off. Forty one years after, the Vatican Museums devoted a study workshop, last May 21, to the reconstruction of the sculpture, called “The Pietà by Michelangelo. In memory of the 21st of May 1972; history of a restoration,” which analyzed the complex and delicate task of repairing the sculpture undertaken between 1972 and 1973 in the laboratories of the Vatican Museums, under the responsibility of the Director in those days, the Brazilian Deodecio Redig de Campos. Thanks to

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the existence of numerous tracings and reusing, to the extent possible, the original pieces putting them together with a mixture of glue and marble powder, it was possible to faithfully reintegrate the work. The Pietà is considered the first masterpiece by Michelangelo—who was a little over twenty years when he sculptured it—and the only one signed by him: in the ribbon that holds the mantle of the Virgin one can read: MICHEL A(N)GELUS BONAROTUS FLORENT(INUS) FACIEBAT.”

Libreria Editrice Vaticana Publishes Letters by Cardinal Van Thuân on the Second Vatican Council.

Last July 3, the Libreria Editrice Vaticana issued “Lettere Pastorali. Sulle orme del Concilio Vaticano Secondo” (Pastoral Letters. In the wake of Vatican II), written between 1968 and 1973, by the Bishop of Nha Trang, Cardinal François Xavier Nguyen Van Thuân whose stage for diocesan beatification concluded on July 5, at the Cathedral of Saigon, currently Ho Chi Min, in Vietnam. The volume, edited by the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace—of which Van Thuân was VicePresident (from 1994 to 1998) and, subsequently President from 1998 until his death on September 16, 2002—gathers six pastoral letters written to guide the dioceses and the nation of Vietnam. The volume is accompanied by certain reflections on the figure of the Servant of God François Xavier Nguyen Van Thuân—who was a prisoner for 13 years under the Communist regime—and a small gallery of photographs, in addition to the chronology of his life. United States Six out of 10 Hispanics are Catholics Approximately 29.7 million Hispanics in the United States of America identify themselves as Catholics, that is 59 percent of that community. The media picked up a recent report published by the Center for Applied Research of the Apostolate of the North American University of Georgetown. The report, prepared in a special way by the Conference of Catholic Bishops in the USA, stated that the number of multicultural parishes is growing all over the country. In the United States there are more than 17,400 parishes,

and the study calculated that, from these, approximately 6,700 serve communities of different ethnicities and with different languages. The study published also revealed that in the country there are 42.5 million “non-Hispanic white people,” that identify themselves as Catholics and that represent 22 percent of the population. Another significant fact is that approximately 3.6 million people that identify themselves as of Asian origin, Hawaiian, or from the Pacific are Catholics, which is equivalent to 20 percent of these ethnic communities. Likewise, 2.9 million people that identify themselves as black, Afro-Americans, Africans, or Afro-Caribbeans are Catholic, an 8 percent of the 38.9 million people with these ethnic features. “The Church is woman and mother” 25 years after the apostolic letter Mulieris Dignitatem A historical document—said the Holy Father—the from of the Pontifical Magisterium entirely dedicated to the subject of women. Women are woman and mother. Pope Francis remembered this on October 12 when he received, in the Clementina Room, the participants from the Study Seminar promoted by the Pontifical Council of the laity, on the 25th Anniversary of John Paul II’s Mulieris dignitatem. The Holy Father repeated, that through maternity, God entrusted “the human being, in a totally special way to women.” And the fact that women “conceive, carry in their womb, and give birth to, children” and this “is not merely a biological fact, but implies a richness of implications, for the woman herself, for her way of being, for her relationships, for the way in which she puts first human life, and life in general.” Meanwhile, the Pope alerted us to the risk of reducing the dimension of mother hood to a simple “social role” and that “promote a sort of emancipation that, by occupying the spaces taken from men, abandons the feminine.” Because the woman—said Francis—preserves “a particular sensibility for the things of God, especially because she helps us understand mercy, tenderness, and the love that God has for us.”

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Homage to Benedict XVI and Pope Francis Presentation of HUMANITAS 70 and HUMANITAS in English Number 4 In the presence of the Apostolic Nuncio Msgr. Ivo Scapolo and the Archbishop of Santiago and High Chancellor of the Pontifical Universidad Católica de Chile, Monsignor Ricardo Ezzati, Number 70 of the Spanish edition and the fourth edition of HUMANITAS in its English edition were launched on May 22, 2013. Both editions pay homage to Pope Francis and the Emeritus Pontiff Benedict XVI. The meeting was held at midday in the Manuel José Irarrázaval Auditorium full of the public, including academics and readers and collaborators of the magazine, presided by the Rector, Dr. Ignacio Sánchez. The Apostolic Nuncio, Msgr. Ivo Scapolo thanked HUMANITAS’ initiative that, according to his words, “strengthens the communion with the Vicar of Christ” and called to carry out a lectio divina of the latest events, seeking to understand what God wishes to say through the history of the Church and the human family instead of just conforming ourselves with a superficial reading of such achievements. On his side the Archbishop of Santiago, Msgr.

Ricardo Ezzati, referred to the last two pontiffs as living encyclicals: one as an encyclical of faith “through his testimony of mature faith,” and the other through his gestures when devoting his humanity to the action of grace to become the figure of the Good Shepherd with his attitudes of simplicity and openness. The Director of HUMANITAS, Professor Jaime Antúnez, highlighted how native people in America may recognize the voice of its original evangelization in Pope Francis, and also whose voice, in his personal style, does not come to break with the legacy of his predecessors, but to give continuity to the heritage received, which is recognized by those who follow his expressions and teachings day after day. The ceremony concluded with the public reading and signing of a letter addressed to Pope Francis by all the members of the Editorial Committee of HUMANITAS, expressing their fidelity to the Magisterium of the new Pope, and begging his benediction for the apostolate of the evangelization of culture.

Editorial committee members of HUMANITAS Review, Juan de Dios Vial Correa and Juan de Dios Vial Larraín, sign the letter addressed to Pope Francis.

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Presentation ceremony of HUMANITAS Review in tribute to Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI and to Pope Francis.

Msgr. Ivo Scapolo, Apostolic Nuncio to Chile, Msgr. Ricardo Ezzti, Archbishop of Santiago, and Dr. Ignacio Sánchez, Rector of the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile (PUC).

Juan de Dios Vial Larraín, former Rector of the University of Chile, Ricardo Riesco, Rector of the University of San Sebastián, and F. Samuel Fernández, former dean of the Faculty of Theology of the PUC.

Jaime Antúnez Aldunate, Director of HUMANITAS Review, hands over to the Apostolic Nuncio, Msgr. Ivo Scapolo, the letter addressed to Pope Francis.

Luis Flores, former dean of the Faculty of Philosophy of the PUC, Jaime Antúnez, and Tomás Alvarado, professor of the Faculty of Philosophy of the PUC.

Audience attending the ceremony in the hall Manuel José Irarrázaval.

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Pontifical Catholic University of Chile The University commemorates its 125 years and reiterates its ecclesiastical identity

On the solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile (PUC) commemorated 125 years of academic life and reiterated its ecclesiastical identity through several activities. The activities of the anniversary included a mass in the University, presided by Cardinal Zenon Grocholewski, Prefect of the Congregation for Catholic Education. The ceremony was co-celebrated by the Apostolic Nuncio in Chile, Msgr. Ivo Scapolo; the Archbishop of Santiago, Msgr. Ricardo Ezzati, the Cardinal Jorge Medina, the Auxiliary Bishops of Santiago, Msgr. Andrés Arteaga, Msgr. Cristian Contreras, and Msgr. Pedro Ossandón, as well as more than 40 priests of the Archdioceses along with the presence of the highest authorities of the University, professors, students, and officials. During the homily, Cardinal Grocholewski highlighted the figure of Jesus the Good Shepherd as an example for those whom God has called to the pastoral work and recalled the mission of the Catholic Universities under the Apostolic Constitution Ex Corde Ecclesiae. “This is a major point for pastors, parents, and teachers of the University: to feed the students with the healthy food of Truth, Love of God, and not to

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entangle them with ideologies and temporal fashions. Likewise, all those who have the duty to teach students in the theological or moral field cannot forget that the true food is the Deposit of Faith, Sacred Tradition, and Holy Scripture, the interpretation of which has been entrusted exclusively to the Magisterium of the Church”, he stated. The High Chancellor of the PUC and Archbishop of Santiago, Msgr. Ezzati, read the message of the Secretary of State of the Vatican, Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, sent from Rome specifically for the anniversary. In the text, Pope Francis invites the PUC to make an effort to grow not only in charity but also in its Catholic identity. “Praised for its Pontifical title, the University must integrate science with Christian human values in the light of the Gospel and the teachings of the Church,” read Msgr. Ezzati. After the Eucharist, the Rector of the PUC, Dr. Ignacio Sánchez, read the annual account for the year 2012, where he said that the University is determined to develop and encourage, in all its dimensions, its identity from an attractive and missionary perspective. In Nr.72, for October 2013, HUMANITAS will publish substantive matters regarding the 125 anniversary of the University.


We were proud that the person elected by the conclave had chosen Saint Benedict as patron, the great patriarch of the West. But we must admit that Benedict XVI has also given us a valuable lesson: that of true humility. This is a rare virtue. Humility is scarce, very scarce, even among the Benedictine order. In fact, it is easy to confuse it with poverty and cowardliness. Benedict XVI has achieved the twelve degrees of humility described in Chapter VII of the Benedictine Rule. It is the longest chapter, because humility is the foundation of Christian life. Jesus himself is master before his disciples as the one who is sweet and humble at heart. Charles Péguy (1873-1914) well perceived the importance of this virtue when he wrote in Un nouveau Theologien: “This religion, that has put pride at the top of capital sins, that has made of humility perhaps more than a virtue: its own style and its rhythm, its secret pleasure, its external and profound attitude, carnal and spiritual, its pose, its habits, its perpetual experience, almost its own being.” But what is humility? In the first place, it is to live constantly under the eyes of God. Benedict has shown this through the consciousness with which he undertook his own function. He is a conscientious man who lives from that secret place of the heart where one hears the voice of God. He has shown this by bravely taking a position, particularly in Regensburg, in the Bundestag, in Westminster, and with such strong acts as the Motu Proprio Summorum Pontificum. Humility means obeying, even under difficult circumstances. Benedict XVI exemplified this when he accepted the heavy duty of sovereign pontiff at the age of 78. On the other hand, he has shown his obedience by not imposing his own program but following the Holy Spirit according to the Sacred Scripture, Tradition, and the previous Magisterium. He has followed the faith of the Church, a recurrent subject in his teaching, particularly in his last speech addressed to the clergy of the dioceses of Rome. He speaks of “the great ’us’ the believers”. Furthermore, what humility in the simplicity with which he speaks of his memories! One has the feeling that he has nothing to hide. We know that his life and his youth have gone through the sieve of media inquisition. But the German Pope had already revealed everything. That is the fifth degree of humility that for a monk consists in not hiding anything from his abbot. Undoubtedly, he has shown the virtue of humility in

his resignation. He felt that he was absolutely not necessary. He evaluated with consciousness that the task was more than he could perform. It exceeded his physical and personal strength. He has achieved, once again, the sixth and seventh degree of humility. “The Church no longer needs me”. If he had not given such example of courage and hard work, one could have thought of weakness of character, but his whole life has been consecrated in body and soul to work in the vineyard of the Lord. All his intellectual work and his pastoral duties are proof of this. Finally, Benedict XVI has been able to reach the last five degrees of humility that refer to the external attitudes: reserve and control of his behavior, his words, his laughter, his way of speaking and walking. All those who have had the opportunity to greet him, even briefly, unanimously affirm that he has something serious, simple, and happy in his look. Saint Benedict said that the monk that goes through the twelve terrible degrees of humility will acquire a charity that eliminates all fear. We may forget of the ceremonial gestures of respect, but we would have never allowed ourselves to have any familiarity with him. The last sign of his humility: the whole earth seems to have stopped in astonishment before his resignation. Like the apostles looking at Jesus transfigured at Tabor. Never has a public man of our times had so much authority as he did at that moment. As if through him, finally, the real humility had appeared and had echoed at least for an instant in the heart of men. Thus he has shown the truth of the word of Our Lord Jesus Christ. “He who praises himself will be humiliated and he who humiliates himself will be extolled”. Thank you, Holy Father, thank you from the deep of my heart. DOM LOUIS-MARIE GEYET D’ORTH OSB.

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The Popes reflections on Justice in the World and the Mission of the Church

In his dialogue with the old journalist and co-founder of the Italian newspaper La Reppublica, Eugenio Scalfari, published last October 1, Pope Francis dealt with the subject of justice in the world and the mission of the Church. The Holy Father underlined that “the most serious evils that afflict the world in these years are the unemployment of youth and the loneliness to which the elderly are abandoned.”

“The elderly need healing and company, the young need work and hope, but they neither have this nor that, and the other problem is that they no longer look for either. The present has crushed them.” “Tell me, can one live crushed in this time? Without a memory of the past, and without the wish to project oneself into the future, building a project, a future, a family? Can one continue like that? This, I believe, is the most urgent problem that the Church has to face,” said Francis. Admitting that this is a political and economic problem, the Holy Father pointed out that “this also has to do with the Church, particularly the Church, because this condition not only hurts the body but also the soul.” “The Church must feel responsible for souls and bodies,” he emphasized. The Holy Father said that “in general, the conscience exist (in the Church, on this subject), but it is not enough. I would like to see it become broader. It is not the only problem we have ahead, but it is the most urgent and the most dramatic”. Francis reminded his interlocutor that the feast “is the love for others, as our Lord preached. It is not proselytism, it is love. Love your fellow men, yeast that serve the common good.” “The Son of God became incarnate to instill the feeling of fraternity in the souls of men. All are brothers and all sons of God. Abbá, as he called his Father. I am the road, he said. When you follow me, you follow the Father, and you will all be his sons, and He will be pleased in you.” The Pope said that “the feast, the love of each of us towards the other, from the nearest to the farthest, is the way that Jesus has taught us to find the road to salvation and of Blessing. To read the whole interview, go to www.review.humanitas.cl

Modern man in search of light

With an unusual gesture—a letter sent to La Repubblica—Pope Francis answered the questions that Eugenio Scalfari had raised in the past months regarding the Lumen Fidei Encyclical. What reasons moved the Pontiff? The wish to “walk together part of the road,” showing with this to what degree he wishes to be the first to put into practice the “culture of encounter.” What is it that allows him to walk along part of the road with someone who thinks so differently, in this specific case the founder of La Repubblica? The

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need that both of them have, as individuals, for that light that allows them to live the best way possible as men. “I also wish that the light would penetrate and dissolve the darkness,” responded Scalfari to Pope Francis’ offer. This wish for light to not miss the road is a criterion for the dialogue between us men. Every life experience is judged at the end by this demand that we all have within us and that constitutes the deepest recesses of our person. Loyalty with this wish is what stimulates men to true dialogue, which shows, ultimately, the motive for one’s own life.

Modern man has tried to answer this demand with the “light” of rationality. Is it possible for a modern man, so jealous of his autonomy, of his reason, and for the successor of Peter, to establish a loyal dialogue, not a fictitious one? Pope Francis and Eugenio Scalfari have shown us that they can. But they have also shown us the field of authentic dialogue: not a dialectic confrontation but an encounter between two human experiences. Dialogue is possible, but only if both are willing to play the game of their own life experiences. Pope Francis accepted to play the game in this field, without putting at stake more “authority” than his own personal experience as a man who wishes to find light: “My faith was born in me by my encounter with Jesus. A personal encounter that touched my heart and gave a new direction and a new sense to my life. But, at the same time an encounter that was possible thanks to the community of faith in which I have lived. Believe me—he confesses to Scalfari—without the Church I wouldn’t have been able to find Jesus, although I am conscious that this enormous gift that is faith is kept in the fragile clay pots of our humanity.” Pope Francis describes, with the Gospel in his hand, how faith, since the beginning of Christianity, has been possible as a reasonable belief. This belief is entirely supported by the recognition of the “authority” of Jesus, “that comes from inside and that imposes itself by its own,” that has been given by God “to be used for the favor of men.” “The originality of Christian faith is centered precisely in the incarnation of the Son of God” that “has not been revealed to create an insurmountable breach between Jesus and all the rest.” On the contrary, the Pope continues, “the singularity of Jesus is for communication, not for exclusion.” This means that one can only perceive the truth of faith—a light that dissolves the darkness—within a relationship. As Salvatore Veca has astutely observed , “the Pontiff demonstrates an idea of the truth based on a relationship. It is not, of course, a changeable truth, but it cannot be isolated, immunized from external contacts, sculptured in rock, because it only lives in relationship, and is, therefore, open by nature” (Corriere della Sera, September 12, 2013). Could the light of faith interest a man who is not willing to relinquish any of his intellect and his freedom? Would he feel that faith is a constant mortification of his

own humanity? To say it in Dostoyevsky’s words “Can an educated man, a European of our days, believe, really believe, in the divinity of the son of God, Jesus Christ?” Nietzsche accused the Christian faith, writes the Pope in the Lumen fidei, of having “brought down human existence, taking away the novelty and adventure to life. Faith would thus be like an illusion that prevents us from advancing as free men towards the future” (n.2). The encyclical does not elude this challenge, moreover, it throws it up again: “Yet in the absence of light, everything becomes confused, it is impossible to tell good from evil, or which road takes us to our destination from other roads which take us to endless circles, going nowhere.” (n.3) Whereas, the light of faith will only interest those who do not diminish their humanity and their desire. In this sense it has been moving for me to see two persons such as Francis and Scalfari confronted as men on their own way of life. Here is the value of dialogue established by the Pope, as a signal to the Church of which road to walk for a true and authentic dialogue. Isn’t this the task of the Christian and the Church? To give witness what kind of light faith introduces in life to face everyone’s circumstances? To all those who meet them, they must be able to verify if this light is really useful in illuminating their lives. It is the risk run by God when he became one among men. The dialogue between the Pontiff and the Journalist—so distant from the typical intrigues, and thus so fascinating—is a great help in the road that every man has to walk: each one must compare his/her own life experience with that desire for light—the truth, beauty, justice, happiness, as Giussani would say—that makes us. Can we recognize in our experience the signs of an answer to this irremovable desire that resists and appears even under mountains of rubble? Jean Guitton said that the term “reasonable names the one who submits his reason to experience.” With the letter to La Repubblica, the Bishop of Rome has offered everyone a testimony of this submission that throws light over things. Finding a humanity willing to walk part of the road together. There is nothing more desirable than finding road companions such as these.


Chairman of Comunión y Liberación

*Letter addressed to the Director of La Razón (Madrid) newspaper, published September 29, 2013.

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Last October 4, exactly the day on which the entire Church celebrated the feast of St. Francis Assisi, the first Pope with the name of Francis visited this beautiful Italian city in the region of Umbria. The Holy Father stayed in the city of the “Poverello” for around 12 hours, and during that time had 11 events, among them, the central event, the celebration of the Mass at St. Francis Square. One of these events was with the youth whom he exhorted to “carry the Gospel by the testimony of our life.” The Holy Father referred to St. Francis as an example to be followed by the young, because “he made faith grow, renewed the Church, and at the same time renewed society, made it more fraternal, but always with the Gospel.” During the event, the Pope answered with humor and joy the different questions raised by the young people present. “I am happy that the first question has come from a young married couple, a beautiful testimony! Two young persons who have chosen, who have decided to form a family with joy and courage. Yes, because it’s true, one has to be brave to form a family! One needs courage!” Francis said that “your question, young couple, is linked to vocation. What is marriage? It is a true vocation, just like priesthood and the religious life.” “Two Christians that get married have recognized in their love the call of the Lord, the vocation to form between two—a man and a woman— a single flesh, a single life. And the Sacrament of marriage wraps this love with the grace of God, it takes root in God himself. With this gift, with the certainty of this call, you can start with assurance, you don’t fear anything, you can face everything together!” The Holy Father asked young people “to think of our parents, of our grandparents, of our great-grandparents: they got married in much poorer conditions than ours, some in war time, or after the war; some emigrated like my parents. Where did they find their strength? They found it in the certainty that the Lord was with them, that the family is blessed by God in the Sacrament of marriage, and that it is a blessed mission to have children and educate them.” “Dear friends, one needs this moral and spiritual basis to build well and soundly! Today families and social tradition no longer guarantee this support.” Francis criticized that society today “privileges individual rights instead of the family, these individual rights privilege the relationships that last while there are no difficulties, and for this reason sometimes we talk of a couple relationship, of family and marriage in a superficial and incorrect way.”

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“It is selfishness: when I stop feeling, I end the marriage and forget about that ‘single flesh` that cannot be separated.” The Pope warned, in addition, against another difficulty, that of “this culture of the provisional; it seems that nothing is definitive. Everything is provisional. As I just said: but love until it lasts. Once I heard a seminarian say—well, and? —: I want to be a priest, but only for ten years. Then I will think it over.” But … it is the culture of the provisional, and Jesus, has not saved us provisionally: He has saved as definitively!” “The inspiration of the Holy Spirit is infinite, but it is also very concrete! So I want to say to you: Do not fear making definite steps in life: do not be afraid to give them!” “The family is the vocation that God has written in the nature of man and woman,”said the Pope, but he said that “there is also another supplementary vocation to marriage: the call to celibacy and to virginity for the Kingdom of Heaven.” “This is the vocation that Jesus himself lived. How can we recognize it? How can we follow it? That is the third question that I have been asked.” “And I answer how to recognize this vocation to priesthood or the consecrated life with two essential elements: The first element: pray, and, second, walk into the Church. These two things go hand in hand, they interweave.” Francis said that “in the origin of all vocation to consecrated life there is always a strong experience of God, an experience that is not forgotten, that is remembered all our life! It is the one that Francis had, Isn’t it? This cannot be calculated nor programmed.” “God always surprises us! It is God who calls, but it is important to have a daily relationship with Him, listening in silence in front of the Tabernacle and within ourselves, to talk to him, and approach the Sacraments.” “And I would like to say something strongly, particularly today: Virginity for the Kingdom of God is not a “no” it is a “yes!” Of course, it implies a relinquishing of the marital bond and one’s own family, but the basis is the “yes” as a response to the total “yes” of Christ towards us, and this “yes” makes us fruitful. Using the word “Gospel,” the Pope answered two of the questions that the young people raised, “one refers to social commitment, in this period of crisis that threatens hope, and the other refers to evangelization, to carry the message of Jesus to the others. You ask me: “What can we do? What should our contribution be? “The Gospel, dear friends, does not concern religion, it concerns man, all men, and it concerns the world, society, human civilization.” Francis emphasized that “the Gospel is the salvation message of God for humanity. But when we say “salvation message,” it is not a way of speaking, they are not mere words or empty words, as so many are today!” “Humanity really needs to be saved,” exclaimed the Pope, “We have need of salvation! Salvation from what? From evil.” “Evil works, it does its work. But evil is not invincible, and Christians do not give up in front of evil.” The Pope said that the secret of Christianity “is that God is bigger than evil: It’s true, God is larger than evil!” The Gospel, he said, “Has two destinies that are linked: the first to arouse faith, and this is evangelization; the second, is to transform the world according to God’s plan.” These two destinies “are not two separate things, they are a single mission: to carry the Gospel by the testimony of our lives transforms the world! This is the road: to carry the Gospel by the testimony of our life.” “Today, in the name of St. Francis, I say to you, I don’t have gold, nor money to give you, but something much more valuable, Jesus’ Gospel, “go forward with courage! With the Gospel in your heart and in your hands, be witnesses of the faith with your life: take Jesus Christ to your homes, proclaim him among your friends, welcome him and serve him in the poor.” Read the complete homily of Pope Francis in Assisi in www.review.humanitas.cl

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Extraordinary Synod in October 2014 “The pastoral challenges of the family within the context of evangelization”

The Holy Father Francis has called the 3rd Extraordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops from 5 to 19 October 2014, to be held at the Vatican. The subject chosen for this Assembly will be “The Pastoral Challenges of the Family within the Context of Evangelization.” Father Federico Lombardi, spokesman of the Holy See, has explained that “it is a very important announcement from the Extraordinary Synod on the subject of family pastoral work. This is the way the Pope intends to carry out reflection on and the journey toward the community of the Church, with the responsible participation of the Episcopate from the different parts of the world. The “the Church moves as a community in reflection and in prayer and takes the common pastoral orientations on the most important points – such as family pastoral work—under the guidance of the Pope and the Bishops.” One previous extraordinary assembly was held in 1969 and focused on the subject of “The cooperation of the Holy See and the Episcopal Conferences. A second assembly was held in 1985 on “the 20th Anniversary of the conclusions of the Second Vatican Council.”

Cardinal Madariaga The Reform of the Curia shall be vast, gentle, and with large consensus

Cardinal Oscar Rodríguez Maradiaga, from Honduras, President of Caritas International, and the new head of the Council of Cardinals formed by eight Cardinals from different countries chosen to help the Pope in his reform, gave an interview published last October 6 by the liberal Italian newspaper L’Unita. In his statements to the former official medium of the Italian Communist Party, the Cardinal said that the reform that will carried out by Pope Francis in the Churchwill be vast, but at the same time gentle and with large consensus. He pointed out that John Paul II was instrumental in the fall of the Soviet Union, Benedict XVI consolidated several fundamental pillars of the faith, and “now with Pope Francis the time has come to bring the people of God closer through love and the simple things, essential for Christian life and that touch daily issues and, in particular, the heart.” “The priority—began the Cardinal—is the reform of the Synod of Bishops, a body of the Church that assists the pontiff in his decisions.” He emphasized that the Holy Father wishes to have their contribution and that of their

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countries, even if working from distance, through Internet for instance. He considers that it would be an interesting reform, because “the synod, the collaboration relationship of the Bishops with the Pontiff, recommended by the Second Vatican Council was not quite developed.” “Another reform that he wishes to carry out—continued the Honduran Cardinal—is the reform of the State Secretariat and the new structure of the Roman Curia and its dicasteries,” which he specified are “not retouches, but a reform of the Curia. We need time. Don’t expect this in the next year,” because “we want to discuss the project with those who live those conditions, who have experience, and we want their contribution”, he said. For this purpose the Cardinals that are part of the Commission have sounded out their continents, gathering extremely valuable and interesting material. But not only that, Cardinal Bertello, Prefect of the Governatorato of the Holy See, also carried out a major work gathering suggestions proposed by the Roman Curia itself. He pointed out that right now this material is being systematized.

A Council of Cardinals at the service of a collegiate Church

The meeting that began last October 1st in Rome between Francis and the eight Cardinals of the Council is nothing less than the application of an explicit direction of the Cardinal College arising from the congregations that preceded the Conclave where the election of the new Pope was decided. The demand that the future Pope should have a group of counselors to carry out the suggestions that he raises was born from this meeting. The truth is that it is a classical idea, since the structure of the Roman Church is essentially collegiate. It was suggested at the beginning of March; on the 13th Jorge Bergoglio was elected and, a month later, on April 13, the Pope formed a group of eight Cardinals that represented the different parts of the world. The Council began its work as soon as it was formed and, before the eight Cardinals, approximately 80 work documents had arrived in Rome. The Pope published a brief text in which he baptized the group as the “Council of Cardinals,” whose task was to help him in the government of the universal Church, and in the reform of the Curia. One cannot expect great announcements during this first summit, which is the starting point of a work that will continue in time, as the Pope himself has written. There are many precedents of similar organs in the Church, among them some with a specific physiognomy such as the synod of Bishops, formed by Paul VI and which is still in force. And this is because the collegiate method does not lose its validity in the Church and is a priority in Francis’ Pontificate.

GIANNI MARIA VIAN Director of L’Osservatore Romano

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LETTERS RECEIVED BY HUMANITAS Dear Mr. Jaime: With much interest I have read the lovely letter sent to you by our emeritus Pope Benedict XVI. I have not read other letters from him after his resignation from the Pontificate. I heartily congratulate you for the recognition that you received for your closeness with our late Pope, and for the publication of his great work. I wish you the abundant benediction of God for your person, your family and your initiatives in favor of the Church and of Chile. Yours sincerely, + Fco. Javier Errázuriz Ossa Archbishop Emeritus of Santiago

*** … What a beautiful sensation to know that the Popes and, particularly Pope Benedict, applaud this great contribution that is Humanitas. An embrace. All the best, Mario J. Paredes Presidential Liaison Roman Catholic Ministries

*** I share with you the joy for this lovely and expressive letter from Benedict. I thank you very much for having the kindness to inform me of the great news. Let us raise our hearts together to thank God from whom everything comes! From Rome, remembering you in prayer before the Lord. Fraternally in Jesus the Lord, a friendly embrace, Luis Fernando Figari Founder of Sodalicio de Vida Cristiana, Lima, Peru

*** ... How glad I am for this recognition with the warm words of the emeritus Pope Benedict XVI. May the Lord continue blessing and lighting up your work of illumination. In Jesus and the Holy Mary María Eugenia Ramos Mejía EWTN – Argentina

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I only wished to rejoice in the letter written to you by Benedict XVI. With a few lines all is said about “Humanitas.” I assure you that every time I pick up an issue, I cannot leave it: this is what happened to me this morning. Let the Lord continue to bless you, as well as your family. Carlos José Errázuriz Mackenna Consultant of the Congregation for the Doctrine of Faith * Other letters from religious authorities and readers were received on the occasion of Humanitas 71.

Monsignor Pietro Parolin New Secretary of State for the Vatican

Pope Francis appointed the Archbishop Pietro Parolin, as new Secretary of State for the Vatican to replace Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, whose resignation was accepted by the Holy Father. Until now Monsignor Parolin was Papal Nuncio in Venezuela and he is 58 years old. The information was made public on August 31, during Pope Francis’ reception in a special audience, in the House of St. Martha, with Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone; the Cardinal Leonardo Sandri, Prefect of the Congregation for the Eastern Churches; Monsignor Dominique Mamberti, Secretary for Relations with the States; Monsignor Peter B. Wells, Advisor for General Affairs; Monsignor Antoine Camilleri, Undersecretary for Relations with the States; and Monsignor Alberto Ortega Martin, Officer of the State Secretariat for Relations with the States. The new Secretary for the Vatican State is a native from Schiavon, in the Province and the Dioceses of Vicenza (Italy), where he was born on January 17, 1955 in an Italian middle class family. His father worked in the sale of agricultural machinery and his mother was a primary education teacher.

He lost his father when he was 10 years old and entered the Seminary of Vicenza at 14 years, where he began his studies of Philosophy and Theology. In 1980 he was ordained priest and sent as parochial vicar to the Parish of the Holy Trinity of Schio. Two years later he began to study Canonical Law at the Pontifical Gregorian University. In 1983 he entered the Pontifical Ecclesiastic Academy. In 1986 he took his degree in Canonical Law with a thesis on the Synod of Bishops. Soon after this he was sent to the Nunciature of Nigeria (1986-1989), and later to Mexico (1989-1992). His knowledge of the realities of the Church in Hispano-American and African nations resulted in his appointment to work in these areas and other matters when he returned to the Holy See in 1992. In 2002, Monsignor Parolin was named UnderSecretary of the second section of the Secretariat of State, therefore occupying himself with relations with the States, an area in which he promoted conversations and the renewal of the relations with the Eastern and African States. Archbishop Parolin is known with great prestige for his work as a diplomat, particularly for his work with China and Vietnam. Sources from the Vatican say that Pope Francis has chosen him not only for his diplomatic work “but because he is also a good priest.” In 2009, Monsignor Pietro Parolin was named Apostolic Nuncio in Venezuela and ordained Archbishop on September 12 of that year. Until recently he was working as Nuncio in that Latin American country.

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The closing ceremony on the occasion of the end of the mandate as Secretary of State for Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, was held last October 15 in the Vatican at the Library of the Secretariat. Upon ending his duties as State Secretary, Cardinal Tarciso Bertone, S.D.B. said in his speech: “Today I see in Pope Francis not so much a revolution but rather a continuity from Pope Benedict XVI, although with differences in terms of emphasis and aspects of personal life; our origins and our paths, as you have said, Holy Father, are different.” The Cardinal said “it is difficult to sketch a complete balance of the seven years that I have been beside Pope Benedict XVI, and for a brief but intensive period of seven months—seven months! —with Pope Francis.” And he added “the memories of what I have lived are shared with almost all who are present here, because we have worked together on different responsibilities with devotion and sometimes sacrifice. And for all that I thank you all.” “The way you listen, your tenderness, your mercy, and confidence are outstanding features I have experienced with you, Holy Father, in countless conversations, in your gestures, in the surprise of your calls, and in the tasks that you have assigned to me.” He also underlined two aspects that reinforce this continuity: “The gift of spontaneous and inspired counsel, projected towards a future rich in memory, and the common and fervent Marian devotion. There is no better image of the two Popes than that which juxtaposes the photographs of each one gathered in prayer before the statue of our Lady of Fatima: Pope Benedict in Fatima, the Year of Priests, 2010, and Pope Francis before the same image in Rome, in the Year of Faith, to place the entire Church in a state of penance and purification.” The Cardinal concluded by wishing that the new Secretary of State, his successor, will be able to “untangle the knots that still prevent the Church from being in Christ the heart of the world, the longed-for and incessantly invoked horizon.” During his speech, the Holy Father wished to share with him, in the first place, all his feelings of gratitude. “Dear Cardinal Tarcisio, I think I can also interpret the mind of my dear predecessor Benedict XVI when presenting you with my liveliest thanks for the work performed throughout these years. I see in you, above all, a son of Don Bosco.” Making a journey through the service given by Cardinal Bertone to the Church, Pope Francis highlighted that “the conducting theme is precisely the Salesian priestly vocation that has marked him since his childhood, and that he has developed in all the duties entrusted to him, without distinction,

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with deep love for the Church, great generosity, and with the typically Salesian mix that unites a sincere obedience with a great freedom of initiative and personal ingenuity.” A second aspect underlined by Francis in his speech was the fact that for every Salesian “the attitude of unconditional faithfulness and absolute loyalty to Peter, a distinctive characteristic of your mandate as Secretary of State, both in relation to Benedict XVI and to me during these months. To feel they are in the heart of the Church precisely because one is with the Pope.” I have been aware of this on many occasions and am profoundly grateful to you.” The third point for which Francis has wished to thank him was for “the courage and patience with which you have faced adversities—and there have been many,” added Pope Francis. The Holy Father cited the example of Don Bosco’s dream in which he and his young followers passed along a path covered with a trellis of roses, but gradually, as they walked, they began to encounter sharp thorns and were tempted to leave, until the Virgin Mary exhorted them to persevere and they eventually found themselves in a beautiful garden. “The dream represents the strife of the educator, but I think it can be applied to any ministry of responsibility within the Church.” This is how he has addressed Cardinal Bertone to tell him that “in this moment I think that, even though there have been thorns, the Virgin Mary, Help of Christians, has certainly not failed to lend a hand and will not fail to do so in the future. We all hope that you may continue to enjoy the treasures that have characterized your vocation: the presence of the Eucharistic Christ, the help of Our Lady, and the friendship of the Pope. Don Bosco’s three great loves: these three.”

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Roman Curia Confirmation of posts and new appointments

P. Antonio Spadaro: The media has made the Pope say things he hasn’t said

Father Antonio Spadaro, SJ, Director of the magazine

Pope Francis has made a number of changes, appointments, and confirmations in the Roman Curia, among them: In the Congregation for the Doctrine of Faith, the Prefect Monsignor Gerhad Ludwig Müller has been confirmed, as well as his Secretary, Monsignor Luis Francisco Ladaria Ferrer. Cardinal Mauro Piacenza has been named for the post of High Penitentiary. Previously Cardinal Piacenza occupied the post of Prefect for the Congregation for the Clergy. In the Congregation for Evangelization of the Peoples, its Prefect, Cardinal Fernando Filoni has been confirmed; Monsignor Savio Hon Tai Fai has been appointed Secretary; and Monsignor Protase Rugambwa has been named Deputy Secretary, as well as all the other members and consultant of the dicastery. In the Congregation for the Clergy the new Prefect named by the Pope is Monsignor Beniamino Stella, who has been President of the Ecclesiastical Academy and Monsignor Celso Morga Izruzubieta has been confirmed as Secretary. And as Secretary for the Seminars the Pope has named Monsignor Jorge Carlos Patron Wong, who had been working as Bishop of Papantla, who in addition was raised to the dignity of Archbishop. As Apostolic Nuncio and President of the Ecclesiastical Pontifical Academy the Pope named Monsignor Giampiero Gloder, Counselor of the Nunciature, Head of the Office with special charges in the State Secretariat, and additionally to the incumbent see of Telde, with the dignity of Archbishop.

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La Civiltá Cattolica and author of the interview with the Holy Father was interviewed, in his turn, by the Cadena Cope. The Jesuit priest accuses certain members of the press of having “made the Pope say things he hadn’t said.” He is sorry that “some things were highlighted and others not so much, such as social justice which the Pope often talks about. The headlines have instrumentalized his words”. Father Spadaro states that the media has not reflected on “the spiritual part of the interview.” “There is no existential condition that implies a barrier to the announcement of the Gospel, which is what the Pope really wishes to highlight,” he explains. “The Pope does not give a radically new vision of the Church, but an approximation linked to Mercy.” “The Pope is not quite certain where he wishes to arrive. He thinks that when walking one makes the road. If they had asked the Pope for the real novelty he would have answered the Gospel. Many believe that he has the reform of the Church in his mind and that it not so. He knows what the reality is, but not where it is going to end.” The Pope, Father Spandaro admits “has a direct style that reaches the heart of the people with one stroke. Some have even defined this interview as a small Encyclical. Francis` style is different from others more formal because he loves having direct contact with the people. When he talks he runs the same risk of direct contact and that he may be misinterpreted, but that’s what he likes.” During the interview, he explains, the Pope “was always very kind”, the pope even offered him apricot juice which he served himself. “He is capable of being intimate and at the same time maintains all his dignity as Pope.”


I believe this is happening to many people: when reading the thirty pages of Francis’ interview in Civiltà Cattolica, it apparently clarifies who he actually is and what this man who likes to define himself as “Bishop of Rome,” intends to do, a Rome that, he confesses, he does not know beyond some famous basilicas. Why hide this? Many in the Church were perplexed by a style in which seems to hint of some populism, of a South American that in his youth was not insensitive to the demagogical charisma of Peron. The black orthopedic shoes; the simple silver cross; the papal clothes and liturgical attire sometimes omitted; the fact that he goes around on foot or in a small vehicle, even in the front seat; the rejection of pontifical accommodations at Castel Gandolfo, of the escort; the children he has kissed in the square; his personal telephone calls to different countries; the fact that he improvises when talking, risking saying something wrong; his request to be referred to by “tu” in Spanish by the person who is talking to him, certain emotional reactions due to a photograph or stories found in the newspapers. With regards to me (and obviously it is quite unimportant), all this upsets certain intellectual snobbisms with which I was infected during almost twenty years in the schools of Turin, at least before 1968. With this “Argentinean” style, he contrasts with certain affected “rhetoric of the anti- rhetoric” manners learnt from those teachers of mine who had an austerity and a subalpine understatement. Recently, there have been months in which I was even glad for the good moment of sobriety, rigor, intentionally low profiles: for a Pope, a Bavarian emeritus professor; for the President of the Council, another emeritus professor of the University Bocconi, the equivalent in the country to the Parisian Grandes Ecoles. To complete the Triad in the Quirinal I would have dreamt of a Luigi Einaudi, but, since he wasn’t there, I had enough with the seriousness and the discretion of Giorgio Napolitano, who was also suspicious of concessions to sentimentality and rhetoric. In brief, I was also one of the perplexed. In any case I wish to make it clear: as I have recalled on other occasions, within a Catholic perspective the important thing is the Papacy, it is the role—which is attributed to Christ himself—of the teaching and custody of the faith; while the character of the Pope of the moment does not have theological importance, and who is only requested to safeguard and guide the Church during the turbulence of history. Here there are no signs of personal gratitude here, the believer follows and loves every Pontiff, independently of how “nice” he is, as successor of that Peter to whom Jesus asked to care for His people. But now we have an interview in the oldest newspaper, not only Catholic, but Italian, in the fortnightly paper founded 163 years ago: a Jesuit, the father Antonio Spadaro, speaking—in the Jesuit’s newspaper—with the first Jesuit Pontiff in history. It is therefore playing completely at home, and not by chance. In fact, when reading the interview one understands how the strategy of the Pope who chose to call himself Francis it not actually of character, but truly proper to the best traditions, not of the sons of the Poverello, but of Ignatius. The charisma of the disciples of the Vasco warriors consisted in understanding that the world is saved exactly how it is, whether we like it or not, that the Christian utopia must always be compared to actual reality; that Machiavelli’s bitter positivism must not scandalize, for whom men are what they are, not what we wish they would be. It is precisely to this man and not to an ideal and non-existing one to whom Christ bears salvation.

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The fortune of the Jesuits, their success in remote missions, and at the same time in the court of kings and emperors (a fact that subsequently led to the suppression of 1773, by strange coincidence by a Franciscan Pope), such fortune was the fruit of a charisma that Bergoglio himself states in the “discernment”: that which the enemies of the Society call “hypocrisy,”, “opportunism,” “mimicry,” and the Jansenists “laxness,” and that otherwise, as Pope Francis explains, “is the conscience that the great Christian principles are incarnated in conformity with the diverse circumstances of the place, the time, and the individuals.” Evangelization must be flexible and consider human weakness, “the confessional must not be a torture chamber,” using Bergoglio’s textual words. It is exactly what inspired such casuistry that, for the rigorous, seemed to accept and justify everything, and against which the provincial Letters of Blaise Pascal were directed, letters that constitute a masterpiece of literature, but a theological misfortune for that genius, certainly extraordinary and well appreciated by this writer. In spite of the exaggerations (condemned afterwards by the same Society of Jesus, even before the condemnation by the Church) the Jesuits were right: mercy, understanding, culture, if not also the dialectic acrobatics, non-exclusion from the ecclesial communion, were and are apostolic means much more efficient than strict severity, registered and canonical legalism, implacable moralism, orthodoxy used as a noose. The rigorists are obsessed with the aut aut – or this and that—while the Jesuits always try everywhere an et et—both this and that—that will allow the highest possible number of God’s creatures to reach eternal salvation. It was the intransigency of other orders which resulted in the disastrous ruin of the enculturation of the Gospel attempted by the Society in Asia, in America, in Africa, and that only Vatican II would rediscover and value. Precisely from this wish to convert the entire world, using honey more that vinegar, comes one of the most convincing perspectives among those entrusted by the Pope to the members of the brotherhood: to thus find again the just Christian hierarchy. The post-conciliar decades have seen, in the Church, the consequences of the impact that must be attributed to faith: social policies and above all ethics. However, very few seem to have worried about faith itself, of its credibility, of its evangelization in the world. Welcome, then, the call of the Bishop of Rome to re-evangelize, announcing the mercy and the hope of the Gospel. The rest shall continue. There is no concession whatsoever in his words in relation to the so called “nonnegotiable principles” in ethical matters; but the insistence on the due priority of order: first the faith and then the ethical, is present, precisely. First let us call, welcome and heal the wounds of life and then after having known and experienced the efficiency of the mercy of Christ, let’s give them classes on theology, exegesis, ethics. Is this a challenge, or perhaps a risk? Pope Francis allows us to understand that there is a conscience, but first of all there is consciousness of the help that cannot fail, of Who has chosen him, no matter how far he may have been from waiting and desiring it. VITTORIO MESSORI *Article originally published in Corriere della Sera (9.21.13)

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UNITED STATES OF AMERICA: THE SUPREME COURT AND GAY MARRIAGE. Last July 26, the Supreme Court of the United States of America discussed the aspects related to the unconstitutionality of the DOMA, the Defense of Marriage Act passed by Congress and signed by President Clinton in 1996, and California’s Proposition 8, to amend the Constitution of the State approved in November 2008 through a referendum with more than 7 million votes (52%). Both define marriage exclusively as the union of one man and one woman, and the DOMA implies that the federal law recognizes and protects this conception of marriage in conformity with the truth and the common good. The opponents argue that in this way there is “discrimination against marriage between individuals of the same sex, thus violating the equality of legislative protection set forth by the Constitution of the United States of America, and that only the States—and not the Federal Government—have the right to define marriage. The partisans consider that the two ways of marriage are in fact different in several aspects (particularly regarding the good of children) and, therefore, it is legitimate to approach them legally in different ways. The North American Episcopal Conference and many other organizations have set forth in Court their own thesis in favor of the two dispositions of the amicus brief (the text of which can be read in the Internet: http://www.usccb.org/about/general-counsel/amicus-briefs/upload/ hollingsworth-v-perry.pdf). The Supreme Court: (1) considered unconstitutional the DOMA’s rule that prevents homosexual couples from obtaining fiscal and health benefits at national level, because it violates the Fifth Amendment that defines individual liberties; (2) established that the partisans of California’s Proposition 8 that exercised a legal action to defend it from the legal resources of those who aspired to its abolition did not have the right to do so. Here we publish the joint statement of Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York, President of the Conference of Catholic Bishops of the United States of America, and of the Archbishop of San Francisco Salvatore Cordileone, President of the Episcopal Subcommittee for the Promotion and Defense of Marriage.

“Today is a tragic day for marriage and for our nation.” The Supreme Court has committed a “grave injustice” toward the North American people by striking down a portion of the Defense of Marriage Federal Act. The Court has committed an error. The Federal Government should respect the truth under which marriage is the union of a man and a woman, even though the States do not consider it. The preservation of freedom and of justice requires that all Federal and State Laws respect the truth, including the truth regarding marriage. It is also deplorable that the Court did not avail itself of the opportunity to confirm California’s Proposition 8, while it has determined not to legislate in that sense. The common good for all, particularly for children, depends on a society that commits itself to support the truth of marriage. The time has come to double our efforts in testimony to this truth. Such decisions are part of a public debate of great importance. There is uncertainty with regard to the future of marriage and the wellbeing of society.

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Marriage is the only institution that joins a man and a woman for life, guaranteeing all the children born from this union a sure base of a mother and a father. Our culture has taken for granted for too long what is confirmed by human nature, by experience, by common sense, and by God’s wise plan: the difference between a man and a woman is important, as well as the difference between a mother and a father. However, the culture has swept aside many aspects of the consolidation of marriage; but this is not a reason to give up. Now is the time to uphold marriage and to redefine it. Jesus’ teaching on the meaning of marriage—the exclusive lifelong union of husband and wife—referred to the “principle” of the divine creation of the human person as male and female (Mathew 19). Before the customs and laws of his time, Jesus taught a very unpopular truth that all could understand. The truth of marriage remains and we will continue to proclaim it bravely with faith and charity. Now that the Supreme Court has issued its own decisions, we appeal with renewed resolution to all our leaders and the people of this just nation to join resolutely in the promotion and defense of the only meaning of marriage: one man and one woman, for all their lives. We request the faithful, furthermore, to pray that the decisions of the Court be reviewed and its implications be finally cleared. CARD. TIMOTHY DOLAN President of the Conference of Catholic Bishops of the United States of America MONS. SALVATORE CORDILEONE President of the Episcopal Sub-Committee for the Promotion and Defense of Marriage

Cuba Chapel reopened after 52 years of State occupation The Chapel of San Tarsicio, returned to the Church after 52 years of occupation by the State, was blessed and reopened to the faithful the day before by Monsignor Alvaro Beyra Luarca, Bishop of the Dioceses of the Santísimo Salvador de Bayamo-Manzanillo, at the South East of Cuba, as informed by the Episcopal Conference of Cuba in its web page. The church was inaugurated in the 1950’s by Father Jesus Iraola, OFM, with the material support of the faithful of the province and the neighboring Christian communities. In his homily Monsignor Beyra Luarca highlighted the transcendence of this moment and what it means for Christians to have a place where they can glorify and give thanks to God, to live in community and present him their needs.

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The Italian mathematician (and militant atheist) Piergiorgio Odifreddi received a very special letter on September 3. A sealed envelope with 11 pages dated 20th August and signed by Benedict XVI. In the text the Pope emeritus answers the book by Odifreddi Caro papa, ti scrivo (Dear Pope, I write to you, Mondadori, 2011). A book that, as the author points out, from its cover is defined as a “Luciferian Introduction to Atheism.” In the article in which Odifreddi comments on his impressions as he received this letter asserts: “It was not a coincidence that I addressed my open letter to Ratzinger. After having read his “Introduction to Christianity,” I understood that Benedict XVI’ s faith and doctrine were sufficiently coherent and solid to be able to perfectly face and support frontal attacks”. Aggressiveness and “light” arguments In the fragment of the letter published in the newspaper La Repubblica, one can read how the Pope emeritus admits that he had “read some parts of it with joy and profit,” and in others, however, he was “perplexed in other parts by a certain aggressiveness and recklessness in argumentation.” At the beginning of the letter, Benedict XVI expresses that “you ask me to notice that theology would be science fiction.” And in front of this argument the Pope emeritus presents four points. Science fiction in religion … and mathematics In the first place you express that “it is correct to assert that ‘science’ in the strictest sense of the word is only mathematics, while I have learned from you that it would even be necessary to distinguish between arithmetic and geometry. In all the specific matters science has increasingly its own form, according to the peculiarity of its object. The essential is that it should apply a verifiable method, exclude the arbitrary, and warrant rationality in the respective modalities”. In the second place Benedict XVI holds that “you should at least admit that, in the historical field and in philosophical thought, theology produced lasting results.” As a third aspect, he asserts that “an important function of theology is to maintain religion united to reason and reason to religion. Both functions are of essential importance for humanity.” Remembering Habermas In this point he remembers that in his dialogue with Habermas “He showed that there are pathologies in religion—and no less dangerous—pathologies of reason. Both need each other, and to have them continually connected is an important task of theology.” In the last point, much longer than the previous ones, Benedict expresses that “the science fiction” does exist, on the other hand, in the field of many sciences and refers to the theories that

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Odifreddi exposes about the beginning and the end of the world in Heisenberg, Schrödinger, et. al. that—Benedict XVI goes on—“would call as ‘science fiction’ in the good sense: they are visions and anticipations, to reach true knowledge, but they are, in fact, only fantasy with which we intend to approach reality. Little level: pederasty After developing these ideas with more detail, the Pope emeritus pauses on the chapter on the clergy and Catholic morality, and on the different chapters on Jesus. “Regarding what you say about the moral abuse of minors by the clergy, I can—as you know—only express a deep consternation. I have never tried to conceal such things. That the power of evil enters to this point of faith is a pain for us that, on one side, we must stand, while on the other, at the same time, we must do our very best to avoid the repetition of these cases. It is not a reason for peace either to know that, according to the research of sociologists, the percentage of priests guilty of these crimes is no higher than in other categories of similar professionals. In any case, this deviation should not be shown in an ostentatious way as if it were a specific dirtiness of Catholicism. If it is not legal to silence the evil in the Church, one should not silence either the great luminous path of kindness and purity that the Christian faith has drawn throughout centuries.” For this reason, Benedict XVI recalls names such as Saint Benito of Nursia and his sister Escolastica, Francis and Clare of Assisi or Therese of Avila and John of the Cross. The “historical Jesus,” that of Hengel and Schwemer Regarding that which the mathematician says about Jesus’ historical figure, Benedict recommends to the author the four volumes that Marin Hengel published together with María Schwemer, “an excellent example of historical precision and vast historical information,” says Ratzinger. Likewise he recalls, as cleared in the first volume of his book on Jesus of Nazareth that “historicalcritical exegesis is necessary for a faith that does not propose myths with historical images, but claims a true history and therefore must present the historical reality of its assertions also in a scientific form.” Instead of God, an undefined nature The Pope emeritus continues asserting that “if you, however, want to substitute God for ‘Nature’ there remains a question: Who or what is this nature? Nowhere do you define it and, therefore, it appears as an irrational divinity that does not explain anything.” And he adds: “I would, therefore, like above all to highlight that in your religion of mathematics three fundamental subjects of human existence remain without consideration: freedom, love, and evil. Anything that neurobiology says about freedom, in the real drama of our history is present as a determinant reality and must be taken into consideration.” In the last part of Benedict’s published letter, the Pope emeritus points out that “my criticism of your book is in part harsh. But dialogue is a part of frankness; only thus can knowledge grow.”

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Ratzinger Schülerkreis The Pope emeritus encounters his disciples Every year since Cardinal Ratzinger moved to Rome, his old doctorates and former students of his university years, meet with him to discuss major subjects on Theology. This year, after his resignation, his presence could not be as the usual interlocutor in the discussion or professor among his former disciples. But within the plan designed for the Seminar held last August 29 to September 2, at Castel Gandolfo—the celebration of the Holy Mass at the Vatican with the Pope emeritus—was considered. At 9:30 a.m. he, himself, presided the Mass and preached. Speaking from his heart and without notes, he commented on the Gospel of the day, on how true greatness in God’s eyes is not due to power or the first place, but through service, the love that humbles until one gives their life for the one he loves, as Christ did in the cross, and which he asserts in each Eucharistic. At the end of the holy service, the participants were able to greet the Holy Father in person. This was the central point of the seminar, in which the subject of reflection was “The question of God in the context of secularism.” For this purpose Dr. Rémi Brague, Professor emeritus of the University of Paris and of

the Romano Guardini chair of Munich University, was invited to give two conferences that were the subject of the discussion that followed. This philosopher and historian received the 2012 “Ratzinger Prize” from the hands of Pope Benedict. Together with this Circle of Disciples since 2008 there also exists a new international and ecumenical group that includes Catholics and Orthodox, formed by young theologians and philosophers, experts on the thought of Joseph Ratzinger, and that work on it scientifically. This is the New Circle of Disciples of Joseph Ratzinger/ Benedict XVI, and some of its members now are Spanish speakers and have taken part in the current seminar in Castel Gandolfo, both during the reflections on secularism as well as in the Holy Mass in the Vatican with the Pope emeritus.


All obedience crucifies us. It invites us to renounce what we have and accept the removal from our position to be led by someone else. It proposes to us the experience of heteronomy, the categorical order, the law, or the denial that prevents the immediate and autonomous satisfaction of desire. Discipline is a school of objectivity. For Jesus it is the condition for salvation. “He saved us by his obedience.” But the only purpose of his brotherly obedience is charity. Living together—either in the core of the family or in the environment of a school, a company, or the city—implies laws with rights and duties, prerogatives and obligations. The law is a framework of reference that makes the exercise of freedom possible for each

one, without hurting the rest. Under this law there are also prohibitions. Certain education, due to the legitimate concern to watch over the quality of the relationship with the child, has been excessively centered on their emotional wellbeing, to the detriment of reality, knowledge, cultural codes, and moral values. This does not help young people constitute their disposition or refrain from expanding their narcissism, which often produces flexible and charming personalities, but oftentimes superficial, that is, insignificant since

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they have not acquired a sense of limit and of realism (young people who do not care, that are too familiar, that mix intimate codes with social codes, forget the sense of authority, of history, of propriety, of the sacred…) Some have not learned the rules for living together in harmony, nor have they been initiated in social and family rites. Adults who have done everything to avoid deprivation induce the youth to believe that they must satisfy every lack, mistaking them with their own needs. Since young people have not experienced need, the psychology of many adolescents is characterized by indecision, because they do not distinguish between their own being, the other, and the real, due to a sense of no difference (sexual). Growing-up implies separating psychologically, leaving their own childhood and adolescence behind; but this separation becomes difficult if one mixes up the psychological spaces between youth and adult, between child and parent. All enforcement of the law implies a certain violence, a necessary social violence with respect to our instincts, our wishes, our whims, our individual interests; but this consented to and regulated violence prevents us from other violence, which is destructive, blind, basic, that finally is imposed by another law, the law of anarchy, and this leads inescapably towards dictatorship, the law of the strongest, the law of alienation. “Peace is the tranquility in order.” This definition of peace, given by Saint Augustine, is valid both for the inner life of the believer as well as for the external life in our society. While teaching law, the educator reminds the student of the requirement of necessary order for the good of all. It educates in peace. Violence has imposed itself in the school environment and within family life. The difficulty for an increasing number of youth to restrain their emotions and show themselves as respectful, civilized or peaceful is linked with a greater freedom of expression granted to children, but in the first place as a crisis of identity. The youth projects in reality what he/she is not able to manage at psychological level. The lack of self-esteem that identifies the more violent finds

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its source in economic precariousness, in school difficulties, in family instability. The parents who feel guilty for staying too long at work and being unable to bestow sufficient material wealth, or that in relation with their primogeniture compensate through affection the divisions and reconstitutions imposed on them, find themselves helpless in front of this violence. This reaches the academic institution by rebound. Teachers fear parents, frequently aggressive or quarrelsome, and sometimes even unruly children. Instead of exercising a true authority, many adults then try to compel through coercion or bribery. In this stage of adolescence, the situation is sometimes impossible to manage. The “ex-participants in the 68 movement” have built the myth of “the cult of youth.” The use (exploitation) of youth (for instance, in the media and in publicity) shows the bewilderment of elders when caring for their own children, proposing false educational formulas. The disintegration of the old rituals “incidentally” (the Christian rituals of first communion, of the profession of faith, and confirmation, or profane rituals of winning in a contest, to open the first bank account…) leads to inventing new ones (obtain the key to the house, have access to the internet, receive the first cell phone…). Making the youth responsible comes earlier, and at the same time they remain adolescents much longer. The weakening of systems of authority and of the law results in the kingdom of “I give something to you and you give something back to me” in which everything is discussed: every “going out” is negotiated, it is bought through a promise of academic effort or diligence in studying… In this deal, each one tries to value his/her identity in the core of the family. The rejection of prohibition and the exaltation of tolerance by 180 degrees reveal the exacerbation of the ego. The private sphere is safeguarded from all intrusion by law and others due to fear of confrontation, due to insecurity in taking a stand. One tries to secure a maximum protection.

Msgr. DOMINIQUE REY Bishop of Fréjus-Toulon (France)



On October 13, Tarragona was the seat of the largest beatification ceremony in the history of the Church. More than 500 martyrs of 20th Century victims of anti-religious persecution in the 30’s in Spain were proclaimed blessed. The election of the place, as explained by the Bishops’ spokesperson, Msgr. Juan Antonio Martinez Camino, was due to the fact that the Terragonese see has “a great history of martyrdom and the Christian faith, since the Hispanic proto martyrs are the Bishop of Tarragona, Fructuoso, and both his deacons Augurio and Eulopio.” Furthermore, on this occasion 147 martyrs were from the host dioceses, among them the Auxiliary Bishop, Monsignor Manuel Borrás, and 66 secular priests. On the occasion of this massive beatification, within the Year of Faith, the Cl. Plenary Assembly of the Spanish Episcopate has published a document divided into five parts: the martyrs, models in the confession of the faith and main intercessors; martyrs of the 20th Century in Spain, blessed in the Year of Faith; firm and brave witnesses of the faith (motto of the beatification); an hour of grace; and the Beatification in Tarragona, where it is explained why the city preserves the tradition of the first Christian martyrs. For the Bishops, this great celebration evokes the words of Benedict XVI in his apostolic letter

Porta Fidei, when he asserts that “due to their faith the martyrs offered their lives as a testimony of the truth of the Gospel, that had transformed them and made them capable of reaching the highest gift of love, with the forgiveness of their persecutors.” Likewise, they affirmed that the martyrs beatified are “a grace of blessing and peace for the Church and for all the society.” Up to this date, the Spanish martyrs of the 20th Century that are beatified are 1,001 and among them 11 have been canonized.


Two popes, one general Superior, three founders, forty-one martyrs, two religious, and one layman are the new names that appear on the decrees signed last July 5 by Pope Francis, and that raises some of them to the altars, declares others as venerable, and records two popes before him in the Book of Saints in the see of Peter.

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According to official information from the Holy See, the Holy Father received Cardinal Angelo Amato, SDB, Prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, in an audience and authorized him to publish the decrees of fifty Christians that in one way or an other lived their heaven on Earth, the list beginning with two pontiffs: John Paul II, and John XXIII. (See pages 625 Year of Faith.) Founders and Superiors Thanks to a miracle attributed to the intercession of the venerable Alvaro del Portillo y Diez de Sollano (1814-1994), Spanish Bishop and Prelate of the personal prelature of the Opus Dei, and first successor of Saint Josemaria Escrivá de Balaguer, he can be invoked as blessed by his faithful and the entire Church. According to an informative note from the Opus Dei, the miracle approved by the Holy See refers to the instant healing in 2003 of the Chilean boy Jose Ignacio Ureta Wilson, who a few days after birth suffered a massive hemorrhage and whose heart stopped beating for over a half an hour. Due to his parent’s prayers, the hemorrhage stopped and the heart of the infant unexpectedly started to beat again until it reached 130 pulsations a minute. In spite of severe clinical symptoms, ten years later the child lives a completely normal life. Pope Francis also recognized the miraculous intervention of the venerable Esperanza de Jesús (named Maria Josefa Alhama Valera 1893-1983), a Spanish

founder of the Congregations of the Servants of the Merciful Heart and of the Children of the Merciful Love, who will be recognized as blessed. Another two founders of women’s religious congregations will be declared blessed, but continue on in the beatification process. These are the servants of God María Isabel da Santissima Trinidade (1889-1962), (named Maria Isabel Picao Caldeira widow of Carneiro), Portuguese founder of the Congregation “Hermanas Concepcionistas”, and the Venezuelan servant of God, Maria del Carmen Rendiles Martínez (1903-1977), founder of the Servants of Jesus of Venezuela. Likewise, the beatification process of the French servant of God Bernard Philippe ( Jean Fromental Cayroche 1895-1978) is also in progress. He is professed brother of the Institute of Christian Schools and founder of the Guadalupean Sisters of La Salle. Smell of Sanctity (Holiness) Pope Francis has decided to recognize as venerable the Italian servant of God, Nicola D’Onofrio, professed clergyman of the Order of the Regular Clergymen Ministers of the Sick (Camilos), born in 1943 and died in 1964. The servant of God Giuseppe Lazzati (19091986), an Italian layman, has also been consecrated.

Philatelic Issue Jointly the State Vatican City-Argentina

On April last, in the Library of the Vatican Apostolic Palace the Holy Father presented a joint philatelic release between the State of the Vatican City and Argentina dedicated to the inception of his pontificate. They are four stamps with the image of Pope Francis with the following prices: 70 cents (Italy); 85 cents (Europe and the Mediterranean), 2 Euros (Africa, America, and Asia); 2.50 Euros (Oceania). The series consists of two-hundred and fifty thousand stamps. The Philatelic and Numismatics Office will issue a “stamp and coin card” together with the philatelic series, as well as an official file dedicated to the inception of the pontificate: with two envelopes bearing a special postmark of the first day of the release and a postal card with the front page of the extraordinary edition of “L’Osservatore Romano” of March 13, 2013 (the day of the election of the new pontiff).

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The Permanent Observer of the Holy See before the United Nations reports Over one hundred thousand Christians are murdered every year for their faith The Archbishop Silvano Tomasi, permanent observer of the Hole See before the United Nations and other international organizations in Geneva gave a speech during the 23rd Session of the Council of Human Rights. The representative of the Holy See asserted: “The serious violations of the rights of freedom of religion in general and the recent and continual discrimination and systematic attack against diverse Christian communities in particular, produce deep concern at the Holy See. A recent investigation arrived at the following striking conclusion: more than 100,000 Christians have been murdered every year due to their relationship with the faith. Many other are subject to forced displacement due to the destruction of their places of worship, due to the violation and abduction of their leaders, as recently occurred in the case of the Bishops Yohanna Ibrahhim and Boulos Yaziji, in Alepo (Syria).” Many of these actions—he affirmed—have been perpetrated in the Middle East, Africa, and Asia, and are the result of fanaticism, intolerance, terrorism, and violation of the laws. Furthermore, in several countries of the East in which Christians were historically part of society, the tendency to marginalize them from public life has grown, ignoring their historical and social contribution, and always restricting the capacity of religious communities to carry out social and charitable services.”

Archbishop Tomasi pointed out that the Council of Human Rights has admitted that “religion, spirituality, and beliefs may and do contribute to the promotion of dignity and the value of the human person.” “The Christian religion—he added—, as well as other religious communities, are “at the service of the true good of humanity.” In fact “the Christian communities, with their patrimony of values and principles, have contributed very much in making peoples and individuals conscious of their identity and dignity.” The Vatican delegation drew “the attention to the service towards the human family rendered throughout the world by the Catholic Church, without distinction of religion or race.” And he gave a series of data: In the educational field, there are 70,554 kindergartens with 6,478,627 children; 92,847 primary schools with 31,151,170 students; 43,591 secondary schools, with 17,793,559 students. The church additionally provides education to 2,304,171 students in high schools, and 3,338,455 university students. The number of the Church’s charity and health centers in the world include 5,305 hospitals; 18,179 dispensaries; 547 homes for people with leprosy; 17,223 homes for the elderly or the sick with chronic diseases, or the handicapped; 9,882 orphan homes; 11,379 day nurseries; 15,327 centers for matrimonial orientation; 34,331 centers for social rehabilitation, and 9,391 other types of charitable institutions. In addition to this data on social action one should include the assistance services in refugee camps and for the displaced within countries, and the company for these rootless people.

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Vatican Library A million pages of manuscripts and incunabula are digitalized

The Prefect of the Vatican Apostolic Library, Msgr. Cesare Pasini, announced that within the next five years, a million and a half pages of manuscripts and incunabula from the organization directed by the Bodleian Library of Oxford will be digitalized. This is the largest digitalization initiative undertaken until now by the Vatican Library, and will be carried out thanks to the Polonsky Foundation. Two thirds of the volumes to be digitalized—approximately a million pages, equivalent to around 2,500 books—will be chosen among the Greek and Hebraic manuscripts and the incunabula of the Vatican Apostolic Library. The Library has 8,900 incunabula, the fourth most important collection of the world as regards to number. Recently the web catalogue of the incunabula has been loaded onto the internet thanks to the new digitalization project. It is expected that more than 800 issues completely digitalized will be at the disposal of all internet users, among which will be the famous incunabula “Of Europe” by Pio II Piccolomini, printed by Albrecht Kunne in Memmingen before the year 1491; and the Latin Bible of 42 lines by Johann Gutenberg, the first book printed with mobile characters between 1454 and 1455. From the Hebraic collection of manuscripts some of special historical value will be digitalized, such as the “Sifra” written between the end of the 9th Century and the first half of the 10th Century, probably the oldest

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Hebrew codices among those that have reached the present time; a Bible written in Italy around the year 1100; Biblical and Talmudic commentaries; the Halakhah and the Kabbalah; and philosophical, medical and astronomical writings. Regarding the Greek manuscripts, the works of Homer, Sophocles, Plato, and Hippocrates will be digitalized, in addition to the codices of the New Testament and of the Fathers of the Church, much of them decorated with Byzantine miniatures. The Vatican Library has more than 80,000 manuscripts in addition to the 8,000 incunabula already mentioned. According to Msgr. Cesare Pasini, to digitalize this material means “better preserving these cultural objects and will lead to a less frequent consultation of the originals guaranteeing a high quality reproduction before the possible deterioration of the original. In addition, they will be made immediately accessible, through the web, to many more people.” Two years ago, the global digitalization project of the Vatican Apostolic Library was discussed for the first time. The number of manuscripts digitalized increases little by little thanks to the activity of the reproduction laboratory of the library, and thanks also to concrete projects in collaboration with cultural institutions, such as the digitalization of the Latin Palatine manuscripts undertaken by the University of Heidelberg.

The South Korean Church Catholics in Continual Growth

The Church of South Korea has been in continual growth for many years, according to the data of the Episcopal Conference. The 2012 statistics published by the Episcopal Conference state an increase of 1.6 per cent, a number slightly lower than the average for the last decade. Currently, in that country there are 5,361,369 Catholics, approximately a 10.3 per cent of the total population. 55 per cent of them are centered in the Metropolitan area of Seoul.

From 2001 to 2012, the Catholic community of South Korea has registered an increasing and continual expansion, with a growth rate between 2 and 3 percent. During the last year, 84,959 faithful have joined the Church and 17 new parishes have arisen in the country. Seoul, the most populated Archdioceses, gathers 27.1 per cent of the Korean faithful, followed by Suwon (15.1%), Daegu (8.8%) and Incheon (8.7%). The data bears witness that 20,712 weddings were celebrated in 2012, 12,506 of them between baptized Koreans and non-baptized. Whereas, the number of faithful that have approached the sacrament of confession is 4.6% lower than in 2011, baptisms number 132.076 in the last year, registering a drop of 1.8 per cent. A similar evolution has characterized the clergy: in 2012 the relationship between priests and faithful is one for every 1,149. The average attendance of Sunday mass has a recorded participation of 1,233,114 faithful, approximately 23% of the Korean Catholics.



From May 23 to November 3 this year, the 18th edition of “The Ages of Man” is being presented, coinciding with the celebration of the 25th anniversary of the first exhibition held in Valladolid, and the establishment of the Foundation that takes its name. During these years there have been more than four thousand buildings, paintings, sculptures, jewelry pieces, musical works, and documents exhibited to the greater public. The exhibition “Credo” is organized in four buildings in the locality of Arevalo. It has now been 25 years in building its identity through The Ages of Man, the proposal of a new concept of heritage and cultural objects that exceeds the idea of the collection or museum pieces in use, but is based on artistic categories, authors, or periods centered on the same artistic, cultural, patrimonial themes, where the aesthetic impact, the iconic value, the message and the account has the spotlight. And

all this during a concrete and limited time, that of a temporary exhibition, which multiplies the tourist and social attraction and power of certain artistic objects. Since 1987 more than 4,000 buildings, paintings, sculptures, jewelry pieces, musical pieces, and documents have been exhibited and taught about. Among them over 1,800 have been restored thanks to the Junta de Castilla y León and the Foundation Ages of Man.

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Italy A request has been made not to “humiliate” marriage by the enactment of a bill for de facto unions.

Regarding the bill of law that intends to recognize de facto unions, including gay unions in Italy, the Ecclesiastical Association, “Alleanza Cattolica” disseminated a manifesto with five major points based on the dignity and the rights of every human person that should not be absent from the debate on this matter. The first point of the document warns that the recognition of de facto unions, including couples of the same sex, harms the image of the family which is based on marriage and “cannot be humiliated or weakened by such representations” that distort its identity. The association mentions that in March 2007, the Italian Episcopal Conference qualified as “inacceptable in terms of principle” de facto unions because they threaten social wellbeing and education.” As a second point, the manifesto says that “civil unions are not an alternative, they are rather a ‘precursor’ for the wrongly called gay ‘wedding’ and the adoption of children by these couples.” In the third place it sets forth that “the anti-homophobic proposal endangers freedom of expression and religion,” explaining that when there is an ordinance that punishes “without distinction” whatsoever any sort of aggression against the integrity of the person and its moral sphere, there is no longer a need to introduce the crime of homophobia as a battle instrument against violence. They highlight that if this law is introduced, there is the risk that a criminal proceeding may be managed by “any critical judgment on scientific, ethical, and educational aspects of certain sexual orientations or of any religious doctrine” opposed to the natural law. The fourth point highlights that “natural law and common sense are not only for Catholics,” they are principles that “do not oppose a lay state,” of believers and non-believers, because they respond to every person who wishes to be respected. Lastly, the document emphasizes that “qualifying the march in favor of homosexual unions as irreversible, means being a victim of the myth that is illustrative of progress,” that is the result of “a dictatorship of relativism that presents truth as a daughter of time.” With this manifesto and other activities carried out through meetings with families in parish communities, Alleanza Cattolica seeks to consolidate a vast front of

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friends in favor of the family and of life, of believers and non-believers, so they can halt these proposals that destroy marriage, life, and the family.

Colombia Defends the Right to Conscientious Objection

The President of the Episcopal Conference of Colombia (CEC), Cardinal Ruben Salazar Gómez reiterated his defense of the family and the fundamental right to conscientious objection, regarding the ruling of the Constitutional Court that established the obligation for Judges and Notaries to formalize the union between persons of the same sex. Sentence C-577 dated 2011 of the Constitutional Court established that as from the 20th of June 2013 the Notaries and Judges of the Republic are compelled to formalize the unions between persons of the same sex through a solemn contract. According to the ruling, homosexual unions would be equivalent to a family and would enjoy the rights of a family in the Colombian civil order. During a press conference held at the see of the Colombian Episcopate, Cardinal Ruben Salazar Gomez said that facing these “serious ethical and juridical ambiguities, it is an unavoidable duty of the Catholic Church” to affirm that “matrimony and the family only exist between two persons of opposite sex that through reciprocal donation tend to the communion of their persons and to procreation.” The also Archbishop of Bogota spelled out that the aforementioned decision also contradicts what is established under Article 42 of the Constitution: “the family is the fundamental nucleus of society. It is formed through natural or judicial bonds, by the free determination of a man and a woman to marry or by the responsible will to constitute it.” For these reasons, the Church has expressed the need “to oppose categorically any juridical acknowledgement of homosexual unions that may lead to a comparison with matrimony or the family, and has decided to abstain from any type of formal or material cooperation with the promulgation or application of laws or judicial decisions so seriously unjust.” The President of the CEC explained that no state authority of Colombia may force notaries and judges to formalize such unions, and invited the State to recognize that before the matter of formalization of the homosexual unions it must guarantee the public officials their inalienable right to the objection of conscience, as set forth in Article 18 of the Political Constitution.


In the conference given during the last Congress of Oasis, Professor Rémi Brague, incumbent of the Romano Guardini chair of the University of Munich, analyzed the last effort to give a new life to the humanist program, that is, the project of a “third humanism.” In his opinion, the condition prior to the one we are living today was proposed in 1921 by the philosopher Eduard Spranger. However, the best known representative of the movement named with such an expression was Werner Jaeger. The main tenant of the German philologist was that classicism, identified with Hellenism, could be a still living source capable of permeating western civilization, from which the latter would drink as if from the source of youth. It should be in a condition to give useful indications on how to reorder the West after the catastrophe of the Great War, and the problems of the immediate post-war. Jaeger considered his task, using a Platonic image, as a “third wave” after the Italian Renaissance and the Classicism of the Weimar. Today, years later, we may smile discreetly vis-à-vis the naïveté of such an undertaking that, notwithstanding, was not lacking in greatness, said Brague in his Oasis conference. “With regards to me—he added—you cannot expect that I attack the value of teaching classical languages, rather the contrary. In any case, Jaeger previously supposed that classical formation might help man achieve a more complete development of his own humanity. For a long time, this education was considered the content of humanitas, since Aulo Gelio recognized in this word the Latin translation of the Greek term paideia. This is the reason why as from the 15th Century the teachers of classical literature were called humanistae. Thus we have gained the habit of calling ‘humanism’ the study and care of the legacy of Antiquity. As from the year 1860, the Swiss Jacob Burckhardt followed these tracks in his vanguard book on the civilization of the Italian Renaissance. All this was based on the assumption that is was necessary to affirm man or—more precisely—the human. “Since always, and more than ever after the two World Wars and some particularly spectacular horrors, we are conscious of the fact that men who really exist are not always or only rarely at the height of humanity. The human has always been, more or less, a criterion than a fact—rather in the order of a norm than the description. Anyhow, nobody doubted the human value that was being promoted. Even today every citizen with good intentions experiences the temptation of proposing

a fourth or an umpteenth humanism. And who wouldn’t want to defend it? “However, it would appear that, currently, the first humanism is menaced, the one that founds and justifies the ‘humanities.’ This matter of humanism has acquired a new accent, deeper and more radical. Until the time stated above we asked ourselves: How can humanism be promoted? It meant defending it against all the figures of the inhuman. Today the question is, more or less, if it is really necessary to promote it. “Humanism itself is in the collimator. Today the most common thing is to defend it from attackers. We know the famous speech with which Schopenhauer began his essay on morality: “To preach the moral is easy; what is difficult is to establish it.” We could adapt this by saying: “Preaching humanism is easy; what is difficult is to establish it.” On my side, I would add: it is easier to grumble against the enemies of humanism than determine the size in which the danger is actually real, exaggerated or invented, as a way of frightening. “Please let me illustrate my speech with a sentence that I borrow from a book by the British philosopher and sociologist John N. Gray. I don’t have much in common with this author, but I believe he has written something that can enlighten our situation. His sentence only has an indirect relationship with the idea of humanism, and directly with the Enlightenment that, as we know, is linked with the former. Gray writes: “In the period of late modernity in which we are living, we uphold the Enlightenment mainly because we fear the consequences of its abandonment […] Our cultures are not cultures of the Enlightenment by conviction, but by omission. “Consequently I say, as a thesis, and in an intentionally categorical manner,” concluded Rémi Brague: “What we understand today by the term “humanism” is not an affirmation, but the negation of a possible negation. Our humanism, at the end, is no more than an anti-humanism.” Professor Rémi Brague, who was granted the Ratzinger Prize of Theology in 2012, was named member of the Council of Consultants and Collaborators of HUMANITAS this year.

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«Throughout history the Church has experienced numerous changes in its doctrinal formulations, but such changes do not break her unity, but preserve it… The theory on the development of doctrine is, according to Joseph Ratzinger, one of the fundamental contributions of Cardinal Newman for the renewal of theology,» writtes Professor Manuel Aroztegi—one of the lecturers at the International Encounter on the Religious Assent. Reason and Faith, in J.H. Newman—celebrated last April in Madrid by San Damaso and CEU San Pablo Universities.

In Ratzinger’s encounter with Newman there were several influential persons. The first one was Alfred Läpple. In January 1946, Ratzinger was able to return to the Frisinga Seminar that during the World War had been used as a military hospital. Following the common practice, a student from a more advanced group was assigned as Prefect to Ratzinger’s group, and that was Alfred Läpple, who at that time was drafting his doctor’s thesis on “The Individual and the Church. Essential Traits of a Theology of the Individual according to John Henry Newman” (published in 1952). Thereafter a personal friendship grew between Läpple and Ratzinger, who remembers that Newman was always present in their conversations. Läpple, on his part, says that, for them, “John Henry Newman was not only a subject; Newman was our passion.” In the summer of 1947, Ratzinger moved to

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Munich to continue his theological studies. There his relationship with Newman became deeper still: “When in 1947 I continued my studies in Munich, I found my real master of theology in the Professor of Fundamental Theology, Gottlieb Söhngen, a cultivated and passionate follower of Newman. He opened the Grammar of Assent to us and with it the specific modality and form of the proper certainty of religious knowledge. The contribution that Heinrich Fries published on the occasion of the anniversary of Calcedonia acted still deeper in me: here I found access to Newman’s doctrine on the development of doctrine, which I think is, together with the doctrine on conscience, his conclusive contribution to the renewal of theology.” “The text seems interesting to me because it defines the two decisive contributions of Newman to theology,” is Ratzinger’s opinion. According to

the German Theologian, sufficient advantage has not been taken from them yet; he himself has tried to repair this lack and has tried to show how they can illuminate certain matters today. In this article we will engage in the way in which Ratzinger has received the second of the contributions that he mentions (that is, the doctrine on the development of doctrine). The Church is always the same Throughout history, the Church has experienced numerous changes in her doctrinal formulations, sacramental discipline, organization, canonical regime… This has led some people to assert that, more than Christianity one should talk of “Christianisms”: the original Judeo-Christianism, the Hellenistic, the Latin, the Medieval, the Baroque, the nineteenth-century. For Newman, it was a pressing question: Is this the Church to which I belonged—at that time the Anglican Church—the Church of the Apostles and the Fathers? In order to give himself an answer he began to draft “An Essay on the Development of Christian Doctrine”. He finished the first edition on October 6, 1845; three days later, he was received into the Catholic Church. The conclusion he reached was that the changes in the Church—which he liked to call developments—do not fracture its unity, but preserve it: the Church “changes to continue being the same; in a superior world it occurs in a different way, but down here to live is to change and being perfect is to have changed frequently.” Newman provides the example of the word homooousios (consubstantial) that Ratzinger has recalled in more than one occasion. When the

Council of Nicea (325) decided to introduce this term in the Creed, critical voices were not absent: it was said that the insertion would adulterate the original biblical purity, because the term was not scriptural, but was taken from the Greek. Newman and, following his lead, Ratzinger hold exactly the contrary: its use was necessary to defend the Biblical faith in Jesus Christ from the distortions that menaced it. With the homoousios the realism of the faith in the Bible was being defended: the word Son should not be understood in a mythological and symbolic sense (as if Jesus were nothing else but one of the multiple manifestations of the divinity in the world), but in the fully realistic sense; Jesus is really the Son, it is not only a way of speaking. According to Ratzinger, “the homoousios does nothing else but simply tell us that we must take the Bible literally, in its supreme statements, it must be understood literally and not only in a purely allegoric sense.” According to Ratzinger’s interpretation of Newman, this development must not be understood in the sense that the new phases abolish and leave invalid the former. The Hebraic, the Greek, or the Latin traditions are not stages that have been overcome: the Catholic Church is—definitely and for ever—Jewish, Greek, and Roman. According to Ratzinger, “just as behind Vatican I and Pius XII, the Greek Fathers, Augustine and Thomas Aquinas continued to be equally important (as before), also behind Vatican II, Vatican I and Pius XII, they continue to be just as important,” because “faith always feeds on the whole.” MANUEL AROZTEGI ESNAOLA Alpha y Omega

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TOWARDS THE BEATIFICATION OF G.K. CHESTERTON The investigation towards the beatification cause begins

In his opening speech of the 32nd Annual Conference of Chesterton held at Assumption College, Dale Ahlquist, the Chairman of the American Chesterton Society announced that Bishop Peter Doyle of Northampton, England, gave authorization to declare “their solidarity with our wishes and they are looking for a suitable clergyman to start the investigation on the possibility of opening a cause for G.K. Chesterton.” The announcement was received with loud applause and great emotion by the members of the American Chesterton Society who have waited for a very long time for an official step towards Chesterton’s cause. Gilbert Keith Chesterton (1874-1936) was a prolific English writer convert to Catholicism. His classical works such as Orthodoxy, The Everlasting Man, his books on St. Francis of Assisi and St. Thomas Aquinas, as well as the detective stories of Father Brown, have inspired and delighted generations of readers. But he has also been a force for the promotion of the new evangelization, since he has proved to be a “maker” of converts to the Catholic faith. Dale Ahlquist, who has written several books on Chesterton, and is also a guest on the EWTN series “The Apostle of t Common Sense,” is one of such converts and has played a key role in the revival of Chesterton. “It was a great privilege for me to make this announcement in the Conference,” he said. “I am grateful for all the work done by Chesterton’s devotees around the world that have led the Bishop to make this important decision. One of the reasons that particularly motivated him was the fact the Pope Francis expressed his support of Chesterton’s cause when he was Archbishop of Buenos Aires.” Chesterton’s prophetic writings are being adopted by a new generation that feels attracted by his eloquent defense of Catholic faith, of the traditional family, of the sanctity of life and economic justice. He is known for his great ingenuity, humility, and deep Catholic joy. He greatly influenced major figures such as Archbishop Fulton Sheen, C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien, Dorothy Day, and Jorge Luis Borges. “I believe that to a great extent he is a saint for our times and could attract many people to the Catholic Church,” added Ahlquist.

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Statement by Father Ian Boyd, C.S.B. Chairman of the G.K. Chesterton Institute for Faith and Culture of Seton Hall University and editor of its magazine, The Chesterton Review, related to the canonization cause of G.K. Chesterton. “We are pleased to learn that the consideration of the canonization process of G.K. Chesterton has begun. We are also pleased with the fact that the first suggestion for his canonization emerged from a conference organized by the Chesterton Institute and held at St. Michael’s College of the University of Toronto. During that conference, Cardinal Emmet Carter, Archbishop of Toronto, and Honorary Chairman of the Institute, pronounced a sermon in which he suggested the canonization of G.K. Chesterton. This homily was published in the Chesterton Review (Vol.XII, No.4, 1986). In 1994, Argentinean readers of the magazine wrote to Cardinal Hume in order to request the Vatican for the initiation of the canonization. A number of prominent Argentinean personalities signed the petition. The Ambassador Miguel Angel Espeche Gil was the most outstanding personality of such initiative and led the collection of signatures. The idea that Chesterton should be canonized was also suggested by Professor J.J. Scarisbrick, a distinguished British historian and member of a prominent Catholic family that rejected Anglicanism. Professor Scarisbrick is an important historian of the Tudor period and author of

the authoritative biography of Henry VIII. This professor sent a letter to the Chesterton Review to submit his arguments in favor or the canonization of Chesterton. In this letter Professor Scarisbrick highlighted the special position that Chesterton occupied in the Catholic world and the large popularity that he has reached, not only among Catholics but also among many Christians of other denominations. Isn’t that a sign—asked the professor— that there was a true and wide-spread religious cult for Chesterton’s personality? The Vatican objected to Cardinal Carter’s requirement. Sanctity, explained the officer in charge, is not a sufficient reason for canonization. There must also be proofs of a heroic sanctity. In response to that objection, the Cardinal sent a second letter to the Vatican, pointing out that sustained devotion to the cause of the Catholic faith constitutes an example of such heroic virtue. Like professor Scarisbrick, the Cardinal was convinced that, in this case, there was a genuine cause to be considered by the Vatican. How good it is then to know that the advice of such prominent personalities about Chesterton has been finally heard.

Prayer for the beatification of Chesterton God Our Father Thou didst fill the life of Thy servant Gilbert Keith Chesterton with a sense of wonder and joy and you gave him a faith which was The foundation of his ceaseless work, a charity towards all men, particularly his opponents, and a hope which Sprang from his lifelong gratitude for the gift of human life, May his innocence and his laughter, His constancy in fighting for the Christian faith in a world losing belief, His lifelong devotion for the Blessed Virgin Mary and His love for all men, especially for the poor, Bring cheerfulness to those in despair, Conviction and warmth to the lukewarm believers and the knowledge of God to those without faith. We beg Thee to grant the favor we ask through His intercession [and especially for…] so that His holiness may be recognized by all and the Church may proclaim him Blessed. We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Freedom as openness to the good In general there is an agreement on what is the central characteristic of the modern spirit: the idea of equality joined to freedom. The Catholic school promotes the relationship with authority on two axis: the exercise of a clarified freedom and the attraction towards the good, maintaining as the the formation of the youth’s character. What is normally understood by freedom? It is defined as the autonomy of the will. In a pluralist context, where no roads are marked any longer, freedom is an aspiration without limits, where the sovereignty of the individual is absolute. Nobody knows this better than oneself. But in the kingdom of emancipation it prevails over its content. To be free to… But for what? To be free from prejudice and convention only has sense with respect to a purpose, that is the higher good of the person. Freedom will never be an end in itself; on the contrary it is rescued by the ego. Young people live in a climate of great freedom, and at the same time they are encouraged to live it. It’s easy to claim pleasure and freedom! But it is difficult to reach them! Those more vulnerable are victims of the lack of conventional rules. They travel through society committing provocation and crime.

Freedom is not only the possibility of choosing, it is also the possibility of being chosen. Opposite to the place occupied, the free place is a vacant place and therefore available. To be free is to accept a void while waiting for that which will complete me. Every possession chokes freedom when man falls back on it. Deprivation is freedom. Freedom aligns with poverty as long as one chooses to keep oneself in voluntary deprivation. In fact, all wealth may submit to us our wishes, in the same way as deprivation makes searching for what is necessary an obsession. These two “misfortunes” are related. Both the lack of money as well as greedywealth alienates us: one due to insufficiency and the other due to an excess. One has to abandon them to be able to grow. The exercise of freedom also produces another poverty: one can only choose one thing at a time. Making this choice produces the termination of the other two possibilities. It implies countless exclusions. The power of having an object that I have wished for has its limitations in that same object. It will never fulfill the reasons that suggested having it.

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The teacher discovers in Jesus of Nazareth the free man by excellence. He does not submit to any system. He is not a man that belongs to a group or a party. He does not let himself become a prisoner of a certain relationship, not even familial one. The proof for this is when Jesus is found in the Temple when he has left his family: “How is it that ye sought me? Wist ye not that I must be about my Father’s business” (Lk.2:49). Or even when he rejects the requests of the crowd that wishes to turn him into a King and thus participate in his messianic mission. (John 6:15) Nobody dictates his elections. “He calleth unto him whom he would.” (Mark.3:13) Today the exercise of freedom is hurt in the name of tolerance. The excessive amount of media generates a police of thought. The press, radio and television do everything possible to end with the psychological or ethical resistance of opinion on matters of society, in order to make it (according to the usual expression) “evolve.” On its part, marketing provokes the freedom to condition it. It is sufficient to attack versatile public opinion, which knows very little of the possibilities of science and the anthropological background of science, and is bound to become excited in face of limited situations, in order to achieve its own ends. In the name of tolerance, everything that opposes man’s intention to do what he wishes with himself, his life, his body, his death, his sexuality, is ridiculed, is “stirred up,” is presented as a refusal to progress, it is qualified as obscurantism, that is, extremism. Certain pseudo-scientific works produced under doubtful conditions and certain opinion polls considered as records of current mentalities become supreme arms in making what is inadmissible pass into the field of the acceptable and thereafter to what is allowable, and from the allowable to what is praised by the approval of the fashions and the law of imitation. The darkening of the moral conscience is so great that the new generations no longer perceive the ethical and anthropological background of certain behaviors or life options such as abortion, homosexuality, and genetic manipulation, for example. This misunderstanding goes hand in hand with the reluctance to recognize oneself as heir of the previous generation. This narcissism implies that everything is possible.

The Catholic school must appear as a school of freedom. It must reject the pseudo-liberalism, that excluding all prohibition in the name of pleasure erected as a rule of life, produces proved forms of alienation. It must oppose resistance to ideological totalitarianism and challenge the crime of opinion on subjects of society in which the humanity and dignity of the person are at stake. The educational project of every Catholic establishment consists in allowing every young person to adhere with full lucidity to an open conception of man as a work of personal and collective formation. The final object of freedom is the possibility of facing God. When choosing a Catholic school, the parents must know that they are opting for a style of education linked with the Christian project of man, and that it must form for freedom. The establishment must not disappoint before this option. Note: The liberation from all prohibition produces serious collateral effects. For example: the worrying alcoholism at the parties among young people or the general use of drugs. Drug consuming is in line with the dependence on products that young people search to find wellbeing. The subjective experiences lived under the effect of psychological stimulants do not enrich the person; quite the opposite, they produce an existential void. One allows oneself to depend upon a chemical product to live. The drug presented as a supplement to freedom turns into the opium of happiness. Its use reflects the difficulty to be oneself and occupy one’s own inner space. It created an artificial interiority without continuity. Freedom and personal development is neutralized. These experiences have countless effects: transformation of the perceptions, errors in the evaluation of time and space, a decrease in the speed of the reflexes and vigilance, difficulties in concentration and memorization, demotivation, bronchial illnesses, problems with sexuality. Thus, cannabis produces an inner relaxation because it is an anesthetic. It produces the loss of self-control and aggressiveness and may alter neurotransmitters. In this way the person finds his/ herself determined in his/her reactions.

MONS. DOMINIQUE REY Bishop of Frejus-Toulon, France * From the book “Urgence Edcative. L’Ecole catholic en débat”

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“St. Alberto Hurtado” Vocational Education Center

The Bishop of Frejus-Toulon (South of France), Monsignor Dominique Rey, has decided to open a Vocational Education Center “St. Alberto Hurtado” to provide for the lack of priests in Europe through the admittance of young candidates to the priesthood with an ardent missionary spirit, natives from Latin America, so they can be duly prepared to commit themselves in body and soul to the service of the New Evangelization in Europe. They will receive solid spiritual, intellectual, human, and pastoral training in accordance with the directions of Holy Mother Church. Special attention will be given to the due enculturation of the seminarians that will enable them to face the context of secularization and religious indifference suffered by nations with old Christian heritage. The classes will be given in French and Spanish. As regards to liturgical formation, the young missionaries will be instructed in both forms of the Roman Rite. The “St. Alberto Hurtado” Vocational Education Center is entrusted to the Fraternity of San Joseph Custodian, a religious community of Chilean origin whose see is in the diocese of Fréjus-Toulon. The formal opening of this center at the service of the Church in Europe, for the beginning of the Academic year, is foreseen for September 2014.

Abortion in Russia 300,000 less in 2012 thanks to aid programs for women. The number of abortions performed in Russia in 2012 amounted to 935,000, approximately 300,000 less than in 2008, as informed by the Director of the Mother-Child Department of the Russian Ministry of Health, Elena Baibarina, quoted by the news agency RIA Novosti. While “1,236,000 abortions were performed in 2008, in 2012 the number was 935,000” or, what is the same, for the 73.1 abortions that were performed in 2008, 100 children born alive, the number dropped to 49.7 in 2012. “It is still a very high number that increases the problem of sterility,” continued the Director informing that in Russia the fight against abortion has intensified and aid programs for women that are in critical condition have been expanded. “ We are cre ating p sycholog ic al and s o cial help centers and offices” and “the majority of women who attend, finally decide not to interrupt their pregnancy (to abort), she specified. Adoption in Russia Children can only be adopted by couples of father and mother

Spanish couples that wish to adopt a child in Russia have seen their processes paralyzed due to the demands of the new Russian Family Code that requires that children be given exclusively to a family with a father and a mother in charge. The condition is tougher still if one considers that Russia is one of the main countries of origin for international adoptions in Spain, as well as in other European countries, and even the United States of America. In Spain there are more adoptions of foreign children than domestic ones. There were 775 Spanish children adoptions in 2011. But the international adoptions, that reached a maximum of 5,541 in 2004, have dropped down to 1,169 in 2012 according to the data for the Health Ministry. And this is not for a lack of applications but for the scarcity of adoptable children. From the countries with which Spain has agreements on this matter, Russia was the one from which more children were adopted, that is 479 children came from here. However, due to the fact that several European countries gave the right to homosexual couples to

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adopt children, Russia wishes to better control in whose hands Russian children will remain. Last June the Duma approved unanimously one of the amendments of the Family Code under which Russian children could only be adopted by couples formed by a man and a woman. Foreign homosexual couples and single people of the countries that have recognized gay marriages cannot be candidates for adoption. This means that the adoption processes of approximately five-hundred Spanish candidates—according to the estimates of the Health Ministry—has been paralyzed, waiting for the signature of the new bilateral agreement between Spain and Russia. Some media close to the “ideology of gender” attribute this situation to “Putin’s homophobic legislation.” But—apart from the fact that the votes of the

Duma show a mutual feeling—it is legitimate for each country to establish its requirements for adoptions considering what is better for the children of that country. In this sense, Russia respects the idea—well established judicially—that adoption imitates nature. And, therefore, considers that the best option for an adopted child is to have a father and a mother. When in 2005, Spain approved the marriage of homosexual couples and their adoption of children it did not ask Russia’s opinion. On its part Russia has determined what it considers good for Russian children, independent from what other countries may believe. Thus the recognition of adoption by homosexual couples in European countries has become an obstacle for all couples in international adoptions.

Poland celebrated 1025 Anniversary of the Baptism of the Rus of Kiev With the celebration of a jubilee for the feast of the Nativity of the Holy Virgin in Bialy Bor, Poland, the GrecoCatholic community of the Ukraine present in the country celebrated last September 15, the 1025th anniversary of the baptism of the Rus of Kiev that commemorates the conversion of the slavic people to Christianity. The celebration had special importance because the 100th anniversary had to be celebrated very discretely under the government of the Soviet Union which did not recognize the Greco-Catholic community. “Since 1958, on September 21 of each year, the Feast of the Nativity of the Mother of God is traditionally celebrated in Bialy Bor, and this year it was the final part of the celebration of the 1025th anniversary of the baptism of the Rus of Kiev of the Ukraine in Poland,” Father Peter Baran from the Parish of the Nativity of the Holy Virgin Mary in Bialy Bor explained to the KAI agency. The Higher Archbishop Sviatoslav Shevchuk, who directs the largest Eastern Church in full communion with the Holy See, travelled to Bialy Bor to preside over the Eucharistic of the Solemnity. This event had great relevance for the local community since it was “the culmination of the anniversary and for us his visit to the parish and the region is most transcendent,” the priest commented. The Prelate has made an apostolic trip through seve-

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ral European countries due to this historical anniversary and has expressed his gratitude to the peoples that kept their faith under Communist repression. In a process known as “pilgrimage,” the Greco-Catholics met again to form communities after Stalin’s regime in the middle of the 20th Century. “Our pilgrimage began in 1958 after the creation of the parish. In the autumn of 1957, we celebrated the liturgy of the feast of Christ the King in a small Catholic church of St. Michael, told Father Baran. The policies that considered the Greco-Catholic communities as “non existent” made the relaxation of certain controls possible, therefore the faithful were able to form parishes, Bialy Bor being one of the first communities established. Cu-

rrently the Bialy Bor community has approximately 480 faithful, although it serves about a thousand believers of the Greek tradition in the whole region. The conversion to Christianity of the Slav medieval State called Rus de Kiev that would eventually become the nations of Russia and the Ukraine occurred during the Golden Era of Kiev, under the reign of Vladimir the

Great. When the Rus received his baptism with joy, the doors were opened to the evangelization of the Slav people, who were rooted in paganism and in the midst of which the apostolic initiatives did not have a lasting effect. This transcendental event occurred before the schism that divided the Catholic Church and gave origin to the Orthodox Church.

New International Day of Charity In memory of Blessed Mother Theresa of Calcutta

ceiving the love of God and the following need to give this love in service and dedication of one’s own self to others exceeds the search for personal satisfaction or even relationship, and “requires a true concern for the other, even the will to sacrifice the self for the other.” This novel love is expressed in its plenitude by Christ in his death on the cross, and is known by the Church by the concept of Charity. Since its origin the Church, “following the instruction and example of its Founder,” expressed this charity in its interest for the wellbeing of the poor and the suffering. But, “beyond the pragmatic or philanthropic aspect of helping its fellow men, the Church seeks more profoundly to show the eternal love of God for humanity,” explained the statement. “Countless men and women throughout the history of the Church have given testimony to the disinterested love for their fellow men to a heroic degree,” reminded the document, that honored the “extraordinary testimony of charity exemplified in recent times by Blessed Mother Therese of Calcutta.” The great work internationally recognized had its origin and motivation in Christ, and she herself explained this reality in her speech when she received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1979: “We are not only social workers. We may be doing social work in the eyes of the people, but truly we are contemplatives in the heart of the world, because we are touching the Body of Christ during the twenty four hours of the day,” said the Blessed. The statement put forward that the Church continues to be the largest non-governmental provider of education and health in the world, and that numerous Catholic charity organizations work restlessly in favor of the relief of suffering and the integral development of the most needy in the entire planet.

The Mission of the Permanent Observer of the Holy See in the United Nations published a message of thanks to the international community for the designation of the International Day of Charity. The date chosen was September 5, in memory of Blessed Mother Theresa of Calcutta. In the message, the Holy See remembers the spiritual sense of charitable works that the Church develops throughout the world. “We are proud to commemorate this day as an act of recognition and esteem by the international community to the service and dedication of countless individuals, organizations, religious men and women, who like Blessed Mother Theresa have brought the light of their disinterested love to the needy,” declared the document. The text entitled “On the Christian notion of charity,” offered a teaching on the sense and inspiration behind such tasks. The document points out that Christianity has made great contributions to culture and humanity “with its profound understanding of love.” The certainty of re-

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The Holy See confirms ban on Communion for divorced who have entered a new union

The Vatican’s head official on doctrinal matters has reaffirmed that Catholics in irregular marital unions after divorce cannot receive communion, but he urged that this means it is “all the more imperative” to show “pastoral concern” for them. “The path indicated by the Church is not easy for those concerned,” Archbishop Gerhard Ludwig Müller, Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, said of Catholics who have divorced and remarried civilly. “Yet they should know and sense that the Church as a community of salvation accompanies them on their journey.” Catholics in such unions who try to understand Catholic teaching and abstain from communion “provide their own testimony to the indissolubility of marriage,” he said. The archbishop wrote on the Catholic approach to remarried divorcees in an Oct. 22 article “The Power of Grace,” published in the Vatican newspaper L’Osservatore Romano. The role of remarried divorcees in the Church has been a matter of recurring controversy. On Oct. 7 in Germany the Archdiocese of Freiburg’s office of pastoral care issued a document saying that divorced and remarried Catholics can receive Holy Com-

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munion if they can show their first marriage cannot be reentered, if they repent of their fault in a divorce and if they enter “a new moral responsibility” with their new spouse, Spiegel Online reports. The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith responded quickly to the document, saying it is “in open opposition to the teachings of the Church.” Archbishop Müller’s L’Osservatore Romano article did not address the Freiburg controversy directly. Its preface noted that the Catholic bishops will hold an extraordinary synod on the pastoral care of lies in October 2014. Drawing on the evidence of Scripture and of Church tradition, the archbishop said that only a sacramental marriage between a baptized man and a baptized woman has the characteristic of “unconditional indissolubility.” “Christian marriage is an effective sign of the covenant between Christ and the Church. Because it designates and communicates the grace of this covenant, marriage between the baptized is a sacrament,” Archbishop Müller wrote. Marriage is “not simply about the relationship of two people to God” but a “reality of the Church” and the Church may decide on its validity. He noted that the Church Fathers and the Councils of the Church rejected state divorce laws as incompatible with Jesus’ teaching. “The Church of the Fathers rejected divorce and remarriage, and did so out of obedience to the Gospel. On this question, the Fathers’ testimony is unanimous,” he said. The Second Vatican Council in the twentieth century also upheld the indissolubility of marriage “clearly and distinctly” in the pastoral constitution Gaudium et Spes. “Marriage is understood as an all-embracing communion of life and love, body and spirit, between a man and a woman who mutually give themselves and receive one another as persons,” the archbishop said. The indissolubility of marriage “becomes the image of God’s enduring love for his people and of Christ’s irrevocable fidelity to his Church.” The archbishop noted that the Church has defended the indissolubility of Christian marriage “even at the cost of great sacrifice and suffering.” The schism of the Anglican Church came because the Pope’s obedience to Jesus “could not accommodate the demands of King Henry VIII for the dissolution of his marriage.”

Orthodox Christian Churches, he said, have allowed “a great many grounds for divorce” on the grounds of “pastoral leniency.” However, he was critical of the practice, saying it “cannot be reconciled with God’s will” and “represents an ecumenical problem that is not to be underestimated.” The archbishop warned that the modern mentality is “largely opposed” to the Christian understanding of marriage, its indissolubility, and its openness to children. This means contemporary marriages are “probably invalid more often than they were previously” and so assessment of whether a previous marriage was valid is “important” and can help solve problems. Archbishop Müller acknowledged that care for the divorced and remarried is a pastoral problem of “significant dimensions.” However, he said that care for remarried divorcees cannot be reduced to the reception of the Eucharist. Rather, they should be encouraged to turn to God. “God can grant his closeness and his salvation to people on different paths, even if they find themselves in a contradictory life situation,” he said. “As recent do-

cuments of the Magisterium have emphasized, pastors and Christian communities are called to welcome people in irregular situations openly and sincerely, to stand by them sympathetically and helpfully, and to make them aware of the love of the Good Shepherd.” He pointed to Bl. Pope John Paul II’s 1981 apostolic exhortation Familiaris Consortio as an example of pastoral concern for remarried divorcees. Pope Benedict XVI also addressed their situation in his 2007 apostolic exhortationn Sacramentum Caritatis. Archbishop Müller also cited the October 2012 Synod of Bishops, whose concluding message addressed remarried divorcees. “To all of them we want to say that God’s love does not abandon anyone, that the Church loves them, too, that the Church is a house that welcomes all, that they remain members of the Church even if they cannot receive sacramental absolution and the Eucharist,” the synod said. “May our Catholic communities welcome all who live in such situations and support those who are in the path of conversion and reconciliation.”

NINE MONTHS INTO HIS PAPACY, THE PONTIFF HAS MADE CLEAR HIS AIM TO RESTORE THE CHURCH’S ORIGINAL EVANGELICAL PASSION. The first nine months of the pontificate of Pope Francis have often resembled a gigantic Rorschach test in which various commentators inside and outside the Catholic Church have «seen» their dreams and fears realized. Alas, what has been «seen» has often had little to do with the record of Jorge Mario Bergoglio as priest and bishop or with his most consequential decisions as pope.

Pope Francis’ general audience in St. Peter’s Square at the Vatican, Nov. 6. AFP/Getty Images

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Those projections reached fever pitch with the publication on Tuesday of Francis’ first apostolic exhortation, “Evangelii Gaudium” (The Joy of the Gospel), which was celebrated, or lamented, as if it were an Occupy Whatever position paper for a G-8 summit. Instead, the papal document should be read and appreciated for what it manifestly is: a clarion call for a decisive shift in the Catholic Church’s selfunderstanding, in full continuity with the teaching of the Second Vatican Council, Paul VI, John Paul II and Benedict XVI. Given the fantasies that the pope and his pontificate have inspired on both left and right, it might be useful, at the three-quarter pole of Francis’ first year in the Chair of Peter, to describe with more precision the man with whom I shared a wideranging conversation about the global state of the Catholic Church in May 2012. First and foremost, Jorge Mario Bergoglio is a radically converted Christian disciple who has known the mercy of God in his own life and who wants to enable others to share that experience—and the healing and joy that come from friendship with the Lord Jesus Christ. As he declared in a widely publicized interview in September with an Italian Jesuit magazine, Pope Francis is a “son of the church” who believes and teaches what the Catholic Church believes and teaches, and who wants others to hear and be moved to conversion by the symphony of Catholic truth, which he thinks is too often drowned out by ecclesiastical cacophony. Pope Francis is completely dedicated to what John Paul II called the “New Evangelization,” by which he means a dramatic re-centering of the church on its evangelical mission and a life-changing rediscovery by each of the world’s 1.2 billion Catholics of the missionary vocation into which he or she was baptized. He is a pastor who is deeply concerned for the flock, draws spiritual strength from the flock, challenges the flock to make good decisions, and respects popular piety. The pope “from the ends of the Earth,” as he described himself from the central loggia of St. Peter’s on the evening of his election on March 13, is a reformer who, as he made clear in “Evangelii Gaudium,” will measure authentic Catholic reform by the criterion of mission-effectiveness. Thus the Franciscan reform of the Roman Curia will not be undertaken for whatever modest satisfactions may be derived from moving slots around on an organizational flowchart, but to ensure that the Catholic Church’s central administration serves the evangelical mission of all the members of the church. As described by José María Poirier, director of the Argentine Catholic magazine Criterio, the pope is a man who “wants a holy church, or at least one with a great striving for virtue,” because he knows that Christian example is at least as important as logical argument in the church’s evangelization work—a conviction that explains his recent (and welcome) criticism of Catholic “sourpusses.” He is, by the testimony of many who have worked with him, an efficient executive who consults widely, ponders his options, and then acts decisively. He is not afraid of making decisions, but he makes his decisions carefully, having learned (as he once put it) to be skeptical of his initial impressions and instincts in facing difficult

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situations. He is not afraid of criticism, he learns from his mistakes, and he wants his collaborators to challenge him when they think he’s wrong. He is a man of broad culture, well-read theologically but more given to literary references and illustrations than to scholarly theological citations in his preaching and catechesis. Thus one of his recent daily Mass sermons praised Robert Hugh Benson’s early 20th-century apocalyptic novel, “Lord of the World,” for raising important cautions against dictatorial utopianism, or what the pope called “adolescent progressivism.” Pope Francis also grasps the nature of the great cultural crisis of post-modernity: the rise of a new Gnosticism, in which everything in the human condition is plastic, malleable and subject to human willfulness, nothing is simply given, and human beings are reduced, by self-delusion, legal definition or judicial dictums to mere bundles of desires. The pope is passionately concerned about the poor, and he knows that poverty in the 21st century takes many forms. It can be found in the grinding material poverty of his native Buenos Aires, caused by decades of corruption, indifference, and the church’s failures to catechize Argentina’s economic and political leaders. But poverty can also be found in the soul-withering spiritual desert of those who measure their humanity by what they have rather than who they are, and who judge others by the same materialist yardstick. Then there is the ethical impoverishment of moral relativism, which dumbs down human aspiration, impedes common work for the common good in society, and inevitably leads to social fragmentation and personal unhappiness. As he wrote in “Evangelii Gaudium,” Pope Francis is not a man of “political ideology.” He knows that “business is a vocation and a noble vocation,” if ordered to the common good and the empowerment of the poor. When he criticizes the social, economic or political status quo, he does so as a pastor who is “interested only in helping all those who are in thrall to an individualistic, indifferent and self-centered mentality to be freed from those unworthy chains and to attain a way of living and thinking that is more humane, noble, and fruitful.” Pope Francis is a revolutionary. The revolution he proposes, however, is not a matter of economic or political prescription, but a revolution in the self-understanding of the Catholic Church: a re-energizing return to the pentecostal fervor and evangelical passion from which the church was born two millennia ago, and a summons to mission that accelerates the great historical transition from institutional-maintenance Catholicism to the Church of the New Evangelization. By George Weigel Read the complete Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii gaudium in www.review.humanitas.cl

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Jesus in Rome

the dream of benedict xvi. a parable Last year, in December 2012, Juan María Laboa1 published a fictional parable, Jesus in Rome: The Dream of Benedict XVI, 2 “to commemorate with pleasant memory the 50th anniversary of the celebration of the Second Vatican Council.” With this purpose he gave way to an original inspiration of prophetic nature: to narrate a dream of Benedict XVI that stirs uneasiness in his life and in the Church. Here is the dream.

Benedict XVI’s dream, at a certain moment, In the parish of Primavalle in the outskirts of passes from Jesus and his Rome, Jesus appears, accomfriends to his own person. panied by some of his apostles A QUESTION UPSETS THE The Pope dreams that he and friends, and engages in a SPIRITS: HAS THE COUNCIL has been transferred to the general meeting with adult beBEEN QUARTERED, BADLY Lateran Palace, “starting a lievers who are spellbound but UNDERSTOOD, AND BETRAYED? new style of life simpler and not agitated, and conscious of JESUS IN ROME EXPOSES THE more spontaneous, more open living through a unique event. PROBLEM, ANALYZES IT, AND and communicative than the In the following days, Jesus SUGGESTS AN ANSWER. previous one, closer to all and his friends walk through believers” (page 151). the streets of Rome, visit churThis is not all: after a couple of weeks, he ches, enter houses. They observe, listen, ask questions. Jesus clears some unpleasant doubts announces that he has retired to the Francison faith, he approaches everyone with loving can monastery of La Verna to live in quietness understanding and awakens desires for a new the last stage of his life, resigning from the pontificate. life in the spirit. 1 Born in Pasajes de San Juan (Guipuzcoa, Spain) in1939, with a degree in Philosophy and Theology, J.M. Laboa earned a Doctorate in History of the Church at the Gregorian University and a Degree from the Universidad Complutense of Madrid. He has taught Political Science and History of the Church at the Pontifical University of Comillas, in Madrid. Among his publications we highlight: Momenti cruciali nella storia della Chiesa (1996), Atlante storico del cristianesimo (1997), the three volumes of La Chiesa e la modernitá (2003, 2004), Atlante dei concili e dei sinodi, nella storia della Chiesa (2008). 2 J.M. Laboa, Gesú a Roma. Il sogno di Benedetto XVI. Una parabola (original title Jesus in Rome), Milan, Jaca Book, 2012. Note the definition that the author gives to his book: parable, that is, an allegorical story that implies a moral or religious lesson.

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The pope’s awaking marks a change of life. He tells his secretary, who asked him if he had a good rest: “It was the longest and most intense night of my life” (page 156). He is disconcerted and deeply upset. After a visit to the chapel, he speaks to the monsignor who informs him of his morning audiences with determination and a radient face: “Cancel all the audiences for the next two days. During this time I will remain in silence and alone in this department. Then God will tell.” This is how the parable ends. *** Let’s ask ourselves: What is the purpose that illuminated the fantasy of the author of Jesus in Rome? He himself gives us the answer. In spite of the wind of Pentecost (Whitsun) of the Council, “the dust of the centuries continues to pile up in the institutions, in its uses and in customs, modifying or at least hiding the original radical character of doctrines and their message” (page 13). A question upsets the spirits: Has the Council been quartered, badly understood, and betrayed? Jesus in Rome exposes the problem, analyzes it, and suggests an answer. In order to carry out this objective, J.M. Laboa has three instruments. Firstly, he possesses deep knowledge with regards to the problems that disturb the Church today; Secondly, he also knows the demands and expectations of current society with respect to the Church; and thirdly, he is firmly anchored in the Catholic faith that allows him a quiet and brave participation in the problems submitted to examination. “These pages—one reads in the introduction of the novel—are only a joyful, natural parable, but full of kindness; an idea of the Church lived and felt from within.

They aim to relocate our faith in Jesus, trying to distinguish between the central nucleus of Christianity and everything that the centuries have gradually deposited in our lives: rites, uses, life styles, and institutions. It is not a matter of questioning the institution, but verifying whether we are using it well” (page 12). *** It is easy to imagine the confusion caused by the presence of Jesus and his companions in the city of Rome. In the Vatican, they ask if they have to receive him, how and where. Do we have to convene the diplomatic corps and wait for him in Saint Peter? With the cappa magna and the precious mitre? Or dressed without ceremony, like in the Holy Land? Who will talk first? Abroad, the news makes noises and raises questions. In Jerusalem, the guardians of the great basilica become aware of the pettiness of their disputes for the possession of the sacred places. In Canterbury, ecclesiastics and laymen ask themselves how to explain to the Lord that His Gracious Majesty is the head of the Church. On the Aventine Hill, in the gardens of the Order of Malta, Jesus meets with religious women and men of all orders and traditions, all happy and anxious “to meet the one who guided and gave sense to their life, experience his tenderness and listen to his word” (page 38). Jesus sits down among them, talks of the wonders of what has been created, and of his wish that human beings enjoy everything that the Father has given them; he exhorts them to fight selfishness and narrow-mindedness, to welcome and love everyone, to live with generosity and to trust in Providence. “Do not let the laws of Sabbath limit your devotion, to

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keep you away from your brothers and narrow his arm exposed in the marble altar, becomes your vision of God” (page 38 s.). While listening startled and expresses annoyance: “The only to him, the religious all feel touched and trans- point of reference in these places must be the formed, as if his words were addressed to each Lord, and not relics chosen from miserable one in particular, and are ready “to renew their bodies” (page 93). Saint Ignatius, on his side lives, their work, and their capacity to welcome observes the enormous painting known as the Apotheosis of Saint Ignatius, turns his eyes and understand” (page 40). On the lawn of Tor Vergata University, Jesus towards Xavier, who was watching him smitalks to the crowd of young people gathered ling, almost mockingly. His comment is precise there “to listen to some of the most fashionable and convincing. The apostle John, visiting a bookstore with music groups in the pop rock scene” (page 71). Nevertheless, the words of Jesus “arrived with Andrew in the Via della Conciliazione, is astonisforce and clarity. The tone was warm, attrac- hed to see that some studies “not only did not clear, but even darkened his tive, brave, and direct. The reflections” (page 64). In Primapeople present automatically IN JERUSALEM, THE GUARDIANS stood up and none of them valle, a young man complained OF THE GREAT BASILICA BECOME to Jesus of the darkness of distracted others with gesAWARE OF THE PETTINESS certain texts and speeches: “I tures or words, the attention OF THEIR DISPUTES FOR THE think (…) that the theologians of all focused on what was POSSESSION OF THE SACRED are a danger when they try happening. They were facing PLACES. IN CANTERBURY, to explain your mystery with the mystery in the exact sense ECCLESIASTICS AND LAYMEN subtlety, distinctions, and a of the word, as the Jews did ASK THEMSELVES HOW TO great amount of words” (page with Jesus twenty centuries EXPLAIN TO THE LORD THAT HIS 27). ago” (page 72). The encounter GRACIOUS MAJESTY IS THE HEAD *** with Jesus includes all social OF THE CHURCH. Reflecting on the Roman categories: athletes, emploCuria, the parable of Laboa yees in an office, the children of a community orphanage, presents it “as a complex of the elderly in a hospice, the parishes. His institutions created throughout the centuries companions—in addition to the Apostles we that intend to inspire, control, and direct the see Francis of Assisi3, Phillip Neri, Tertulian, work and thought of Christians, that very soon Augustine, Catherine of Siena, Cyprian, Mary turned into an enormous bureaucracy with the Magdalene, Gregory The Great, John Chrysos- pretense to govern, in the name of the Pope, all tom, Agnes and Priscilla, Sebastian, and others the life of the Church” (page 45). The specter of either with the Lord or alone go to the city. “power”, also in the Church, always remains on Among them we also find Ignatius of Lo- the watch, sometimes with the label of the “higyola and Francis Xavier, who visit the Church her glory of God.” A monsignor of the Curia, in of Jesus and discuss the historical events of the a crisis of authenticity, says to Jesus, that he reSociety of Jesus, apostolate methods, the diffi- members the primacy of love for the community culties of the present time, and the criteria for of believers: “We talk very much of service, but the election of vocations. Xavier, when he saw it is difficult to find a society as hierarchical as 3 In Laboa’s book, the name of St. Francis of Assisi appears frequently, presented as the sustainer of the absolute of God, and master of the Christian life. Laboa makes him say the following: “We are in passing, only heaven is our motherland, only God is the walking stick for our tiredness when we are lost and in the moments in which we realize that we are nothing without transcendence (p.106) . The names of Saint Ignatius and Saint Francis Xavier are also frequent.

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ours: Pope, patriarchs, cardinals, archbishops, life, Christ seemed (…) alive, real, and different bishops, auxiliaries, apostolic administrators, from what they had imagined. With his presand a countless number monsignors, priests, ence only, even before pronouncing a word, he general religious men and women, provincials, uncovered the fragility and also the lie of their lives, the inconsistency of their safety. They felt superiors of all types, etc” (page 83). Some cardinals denounce the other danger fear in front of Him who was absolute truth and faced by the Church in addition to bureaucra- incomparable clarity. Without wishing to, they cy: to make a career, the cursus honorum, the discovered themselves just as they were and resulting competition seeks to reach an incre- behaved (…). But while they were scared and asingly important degree “sometimes at any confused, they felt that Christ loved them and cost” (page 130). Among the other shadows that judged them from his mercy” (p.136). In his long and tacit speech, Jesus indicates gravitate towards the Church—such as absence of disinterested love, humanity, attention to the the lifestyle of those who “he has called by ideas of the others, reciprocal collaboration, their names to evangelize:” announce the joy of salvation with humility, rightconsideration that only God ness of mind, loving delivery, is the absolute Lord of the ON THE AVENTINE HILL, IN simplicity of heart and spirit of Church—one that deserves THE GARDENS OF THE ORDER service: “All of you are called special attention is the lack of OF MALTA, JESUS MEETS WITH to announce the Good News, “the necessary creativity to RELIGIOUS WOMEN AND MEN OF that God is your Father” (page formulate a new speech in the ALL ORDERS AND TRADITIONS, 139). He finishes by assuring conditions to communicate the ALL HAPPY AND ANXIOUS “TO his presence among the faithGospel to the current world” MEET THE ONE WHO GUIDED ful believers “until the end of (page 20). AND GAVE SENSE TO THEIR LIFE, times.” *** EXPERIENCE HIS TENDERNESS Pope Benedict’s dream Does Jesus visit the VatiAND LISTEN TO HIS WORD. ends with the vision of Jesus can? Pope Benedict does not leaving Rome by the Via Apknow. There is a sensation of disquiet among the cardinals; he is also anxious. pia, discussing events and his encounters with He has called them to the Consistory room and his friends. *** has said the following: “I have decided to go J.M. Laboa´s parable certainly has pages to to the Abbey of the Three Fountains, where the kind sisters of Father Foucauld live, and enjoy, sometimes read with the suspense of a wait there, in prayer and penitence, whatever thriller, but it is not, nor does it pretend to be, God determines. (…) Those who are willing a masterpiece. It wishes to be an answer to to accompany me must hurry because we will four repeated questions: “What would hapleave the Vatican as soon as possible,” “A Cardi- pen if Christ suddenly appeared in Rome and nal—or he is no longer cardinal? —thinks with met face to face with the Christians that live melancholy: “How much easier everything was there? How would they feel when comparing when he was kept in the tabernacle” (page 132). their way of life with the one that the Master In the chapel of the abbey something requests? Wouldn’t things like arrogance, intomiraculous happens. While all were looking lerance, selfishness and the empty judgments absorbed at the Sacred Host, the host turns of so many faithful about their fellow men under their eyes into the figure of Christ with come sadly into the light? How would they jusseveral appearances. “For the first time in their tify themselves before the gaze that needs no

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justifications or explanations and expresses admiration and THEY FELT FEAR IN FRONT OF to reveal so much incoherence gratitude for them; he denouHIM WHO WAS ABSOLUTE TRUTH and lack of love? (page 11). nces delays and uncertainties AND INCOMPARABLE CLARITY. The validity of Jesus in Rome with regards to the full acWITHOUT WISHING TO, THEY is found in the answers to these ceptance of the Council; he DISCOVERED THEMSELVES JUST questions. And these are subsinvites one to have confidence AS THEY WERE AND BEHAVED. tantially acceptable. The author because “Jesus does not go BUT WHILE THEY WERE SCARED is an historian by profession, away from Rome nor from the AND CONFUSED, THEY FELT and he moves freely in the field world” (Page.148). THAT CHRIST LOVED THEM AND of events in the post-conciliar Does the historian J.M. JUDGED THEM FROM HIS MERCY. Church with honesty, clarity, Laboa also have the gift of and vivid participation. He prophecy? The answer must balances the positive and the negative; he re- be given by the reader. cognizes the generous, constant, and unyielding FERDINANDO CASTELLI, S.J. efforts of Paul VI, John Paul II, and Benedict XVI, Buy via the Internet on www.jacabook.it

The Word of God as an Ecclesial Legal Good La parola di Dio quale bene giuridico ecclesiale. Il «munus docendi» della Chiesa. Carlos José Errázuriz Edizioni Santa Croce Roma, 2012 232 pages

The author of this book, a distinguished Chilean canonist, Professor at the Pontifical University of the Holy Cross, and consultant of many pontifical institutions tells us, in the presentation of the book, that this study contains the first chapter of a second, yet unpublished, volume of his Corso fondamentale sul diritto nella Chiesa. It is a chapter that deals with some legal aspects of the Church’s Teaching Function, the munus docendi, which belongs to Book III of the Code of Canon Law. As an appendix to the present volume, the author has attached many of his articles (already published in specialized journals) on the same topic, which allow the reader to delve deeper into some of its aspects. The main question underlying every topic treated in this book is this: why everything related to the transmission of the Word of God is subject to canonical regulation. Prima facie, it would seem that the Word of God belongs solely to theology or the Church’s

pastoral activity, so that it bears no relation to Canon Law. The answer to this question is already suggested in the title of the book: the Word of God is an ecclesial legal good. That is, just as the Word of God is a saving good—the Word of Truth, the saving Word—it is also a true right of the faithful, and, furthermore, of every human person, for everyone is called upon to know the truth. And if we say it is a right, then others have the duty to transmit it. In fact, the whole Church has this duty; a duty which is only moral in some cases, but in others strictly legal, according to the mission of each faithful and to his specific relation to the addressee of the Word. As the author stresses throughout the book, this way of studying the subject presupposes a realist conception of canon law, as “what is just” in the Church. What is just in the Church are the basic saving goods: the Word and the sacraments, by reference to which the whole canonical system is structured. Now that we have stated the perspective from which the book studies canon law, we can examine the main topics treated by the author. First, he presents the relations every human person, and then specifically every Christian faithful, has to the Word of God. The latter have the right, and on many occasions, the duty, to receive, protect, deepen, and transmit the Word of God. Then the author analyses the relations between the Church as an institution and the Word, giving special relevance to the mission of the Hierarchy. Here he deals with the Magisterium as the authentic interpretation of the Word, and with the Ministry of the Word as the official announcement of the Word, which is especially manifest during preaching and catechesis. Finally, he deals with education and

* Errázuriz, Carlos José. La parola di Dio quale bene giuridico ecclesiale. Il «munus docendi» della Chiesa. Edizioni Santa Croce, 2012, 232 pages.

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the media, two subjects that are more directly related to human or temporal realities, but which are also exceptional means to transmit the truth—both the truth expressed by the Word, and the truth of certain human realities that can be illumined by it. There are many interesting topics in the book, not only for the canonist, but also for those who, interested in the mission of the Church, would like to know more about it from the standpoint of the Just. As an example, I shall mention some topics that may illuminate current aspects of the life of the Church. In some milieus there is often the tendency to see the Magisterium’s interventions as contrary to freedom, be it of those who do theological research or of the faithful in general. With great clarity the author explains that, because the Word of God is a saving and objective word, the faithful have a genuine right to receive the Word as a whole, as well as the primary duty to preserve the communion within the Church— a communion that always implies the authentic profession of the faith. Therefore, the eventual sanction that the Church’s authority may impose on some teaching which contradicts the authentic Magisterium, far from being a limitation on freedom, is a way of protecting a concrete right of the faithful. There are some who have a reductive and legalist view of the Magisterium. A special merit of the book we are reviewing is that it presents a unitary view of it. The distinction between different degrees of certainty should not obscure the fact that the Holy Spirit assists every authentic Magisterium. Therefore, it is a false attitude to reduce our adherence to the Magisterium only to its strictly infallible acts. And also a false attitude to identify the infallibility of the Magisterium only with those announcements made ex cathedra, thus forgetting the possible infallibility of the ordinary Magisterium. On another subject, I think the author presents very interesting observations regarding Catholic education: aspects such as the nature of the Catholic school or university and the different levels at which the institution of the Church may be involved in them. Other aspects he deals with are the teaching of religion in schools and the mandate to teach holy sciences in a university. A correct statement on many of these topics requires a view that is able to harmonise academic freedom (necessary for the pursuit of truth) with the doctrinal and moral adherence to the Catholic faith (a necessary condition for an institution to remain within the ecclesial communion). There are many other topics treated in this book, which the reader should be able to discover by himself. We believe this is a very useful work, both for those who would like to have an overview of the munus docendi from a canonical perspective, and for those who would like to study some of its aspects seriously and in depth. Francisco Walker Buy via the internet at www.edizionisantacroce.it

True power comes from service El verdadero poder es el servicio Jorge M. Bergoglio Publicaciones Claretianas Buenos Aires, 2013 368 pages

This compilation of lectures, conferences, letters, and homilies written by Jorge Bergoglio (when he was still Archbishop of Buenos Aires and recently edited again in Spain by the same editorial house), is a work that allows us to get closer to the current Pontiff as a pastor that manifests an authentic love for human beings, for society, and for the Church. It is a book in which, with clear, colloquial, and intimate yet deep language, Jorge Bergoglio advances his teachings and his thought from the key “to give oneself to others and for others,” that is, from true power, the one that comes from service. He considers the main aspects of our service to God and society, and the way in which each one of us can incarnate the phrase “Christ has not come to be served, but to serve” in our lives, just as Christ Himself did and made manifest, especially at the service of the Cross. His words are very lucid and realistic, showing no optimistic naïveté. He is quite learned, knows a lot and does not neglect intellectual matters. At the same time, he knows the Gospel and Tradition very well, which are starting points for many of his meditations. It is as if he was wondering: “which passage of the Gospel illuminates this challenge?” In his work he values the fundamental role of education and catechesis; he speaks of the tasks before Christians in today’s world, the new evangelization, current culture, poverty, inequality, corruption, human rights, etc. His writings reflect a very spiritual Bergoglio, with a clear focus on the poor, those who suffer and are excluded, just like Jesus. He speaks of a “popular religiosity,” understood as a religiosity in which the incarnated Word has been accepted in and incorporated into popular culture. He constantly repeats the fundamental importance of listening to the people; he speaks of the creativity of “knowing to be” near those who suffer, of a “pedagogy of being present.” That is why he calls for a going out to meet others, going

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out to both geographical and existential peripheries. Going out to the streets, “Get out of the caves!” “Don’t wait, get out!” We must go out to look for others. The method he proposes is very humane: a method of listening, meeting, and looking at each other’s faces. Thus, Bergoglio introduces us into the “culture of meeting with others,” which on one hand values human beings as true protagonists, not as mere spectators of their own lives; and on the other proposes to overcome divisions. This is why he speaks of the importance of considering the community before the individual: the whole always comes before the part. He denounces all individual aims that are above the common good: he speaks of an “attitude of renounced service without regard for one’s own self-interest.” When formulating the concept of “neighborness” he shows a deep interest in places of common understanding. Continuing with his idea of a “culture of meeting with others,” he warns us of the danger of a self-referential Church. He insists that the Church’s strength lies outside of it: above all in Christ. Hence, today more than ever, Bergoglio tells us, it is urgent to let oneself be found by the Love that always takes the initiative, to thus be able to help men and women to experience the Good News of meeting others. He explains to us: “Either we open the door to Jesus, who comes to save us, or we shut ourselves in the sufficiency and pride of self-salvation.” He exhorts us to open our doors to the Lord: “the doors of the heart, of the mind, of our churches... all doors.” Yet he warns us that this openness should not be a “matter of words but rather of gestures.” “Our people are tired of words: they do not need so many teachers, but witnesses.” But what should we communicate? We announce above all a Person, an event: Christ loves us and has given up his life for us (cf. Eph 2:1-9). All of us must “start anew from Christ,” acknowledging that one does not begin to be a Christian by means of an ethical decision or a great idea, but through meeting with an event, with a Person who provides a new horizon for one’s life, and thus a decisive orientation (Aparecida, 11-12). He constantly calls us to meet with Christ, to focus on Him, accepting Him in our hearts, and announcing Him with existential need. Finally, throughout his homilies and conferences, it becomes plain how much Jorge Bergoglio believes in the power of prayer, inviting us constantly to pray, and particularly for him. At the same time, he continually refers to Mary, who, being always an example for us, is a part of his spirituality; and which, as he himself teaches, “should not only be a conclusion, but, more explicitly, a reference to the centre.” Cecilia Canale

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On Education. Dialogue with Pope Benedict XVI Dialogo sull’educazione con Papa Benedetto XVI Donato Petti Libreria Editrice Vaticana Vatican City, 2011 395 pages

Benedict XVI often called attention to the question of an educational emergency. Donato Petti, head of the Institute of the Brothers of the Christian Schools, takes on the task of this worry and, simulating an interview with the Pontiff, puts forward topics and questions that were treated during his magisterium. Thus, this Lasallian brother constructs a well structured dialogue out of a selection of Benedict XVI’s precise and deep teaching on education. The first part of the book serves as an introduction: in it the causes and nature of the current educational crisis are addressed. The second and third parts, on the other hand, address the elements that clarify the essence of the educational task, that is, its aim and content. The aim of education is understood by uniting the multiple dimensions of man’s vocation; whereas the contents are given by the values which—like the human vocation—arise from “the two sources that direct the human path”: nature and Revelation. The fourth and last part of the book summarizes the teaching of Benedict XVI regarding the Catholic school: the author explains what is specific about this institution and offers a guide for the formation of educators. The book is well-structured and touches on many subjects. It should therefore be valued not only as an instrument for consultation, but also as a basis for a systematic study on education in general, and on the function of Catholic schools in particular. Nicolás Olivares Bøgeskov Buy via the internet in www.libreriaeditricevaticana.com

Coincidence or God’s Plan? Creation and Evolution Seen in the Light of the Faith and Reason. Hasard ou plan de Dieu? La Création et l’Évolution vues à la lumière de la Foi et de la Raison Christoph Schönborn Les Editions du Cerf Paris, 2008 160 pages

On July 7, 2005, Cardinal Schönborn, Archbishop of Vienna, published an opinion piece in the New York Times entitled “Finding Design in Nature,” in which he contrasted the strands of ideological evolutionism with the Christian thesis of Creationism. The text prompted a violent polemic, which led the Prelate to develop the subject with precision and rigor in an interesting dialogue covering the relationship between faith and reason. The book we review now is taken from a conference Schönborn held some time later, at the cathedral of Saint-Étienne, on the same topic. The first chapter stresses the central importance of the creative act within the Christian understanding of the world: to believe in God, but not in his creative character, leads to not believing that God is God, says the author, following St. Thomas (p. 11). Faith in creation is also the basis of ethics, for the latter presupposes that the Creator has something to say through his works; something that should be listened to, a design of the world that can be apprehended by the intellect. The world—he argues—could not be an object of scientific study if it had not been understood as contingent: as non-divine. This demystifying of nature is only possible by means of the idea of creation. This concept precludes both the divinization of the world and its devaluation (p. 15). This leads to the relationship between faith and reason, where he concludes that the conflict is only an apparent one, for God simultaneously creates the world and human reason (which is able to understand it). The argument is not advanced to counter the criticism of those who deny the first premise (viz. that God creates the world), but rather to explain the unity of faith and reason in a creationist setting. In this context, he refers to the theory of evolution, claiming that he holds nothing against it, with the condition that it does not trespass the limits of a scientific theory, for—he argues—if science sticks to its scientific method, it cannot conflict with faith (p. 23). Quoting John Paul II, he concludes that, for science and faith to be well understood, it is necessary for reason to mediate. The

author is surprised by the violent reaction to the proposal of a creative God, which is called “fanaticism.” Schönborn correctly distinguishes the creationist attitude of “fundamentalism,” or literal interpretation of the sacred texts, which holds that every word has been inspired by God (p. 28). The work we are reviewing follows the plan proposed by the Catechism of the Catholic Church: (a) there is an absolute beginning of the world; (b) creatures differ according to their species; (c) God’s action is simultaneously creative and conservative; and (d) God governs creation, a government that constitutes his Providence. Let’s review this briefly. Regarding the first point, Schönborn says one must consider four conclusions: God calls into existence everything there is; creation is not a temporal act for God, but only for creatures; and creation is an act of generosity (pp. 25ff.). On the second point, Schönborn remarks that for centuries it was thought that species were immutable and each created by God individually. Darwin later held that species had emerged progressively, from the simplest to the most complex ones, so they were not immutable (p. 43). It is evident—the author claims—that the Bible is not a treatise of natural science. Diversity is something God wants and is organized according to an order. The different species are that order. Only individuals exist that realize the specificity of a certain species. The unity of the spiritual soul and the body is alone what fixes, strictly speaking, the species. In those beings whose souls depend on matter, individuals could mutate regarding to their species without inconvenience. The less significant the nature of the soul, the more evident this becomes. No non-rational species has been created in an independent manner (the individuals have). As Darwin says: the laws by which the Creator subjects matter are more consistent with the idea that the production and extinction of past and present beings of the world are the result of secondary causes. The author’s thesis is that, although the theory of evolution can be considered to be in some sense a materialist thesis (what he calls “evolutionism”), it nevertheless can be wholly consistent with the conclusions of a creative God (p. 58). The third point is that God permanently acts on creation. This act preserves everything in its being and provides it with its aim. It is creatio continua. This permanent action of God on the world is what gives sense to petitions and to our concrete confidence in divine Providence (p. 68). Faith in continual creation, though not demonstrable, may in fact be shown to be consistent with reason (pp. 71ff.). The last aspect is the government of the world. Here the author addresses the problem of pain. His conclusion, following St. Thomas, is that an explanation of pain cannot be found without a transcendent appeal (p. 82). The question is why has God not created a perfect world, where there is no evil. He explains why a perfect world cannot be created, and he distinguishes between physical and moral evil. He also explains how God’s design is realized through

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nature. Thus, creation is good, but imperfect. Evil—following the scholastic explanation—is a privation of goodness, and because creation is imperfect, one and the same cause may produce good or harmful effects (p. 92). Man appears, in this setting, as the king of creation. The Second Vatican Council—Schönborn reminds us—affirms that believers and non-believers generally share the idea that everything on Earth is for man. This can now be doubted from the standpoint of latter-day animalist and ecologist doctrines. The world was created because of love for man, the only creature God has loved for its own sake (p. 99). Because of its spiritual soul, however, man is not included in the flux of creation (p. 105). This agrees with the explanation of the theory of evolution Schönborn presented before. This hegemonic position makes man responsible for the created world. How should man use the power bestowed upon him? Pope Benedict XVI holds that the Creator has conferred man with the responsibility to take care of the universe as God’s creation, according to the rhythm and logic of the latter. Can man listen to this rhythm? Yes—answers Schönborn—, through reason, which discerns essences and should approach them carefully, not violently, in a responsible way (p. 133). In sum, this is a work written in the form of an essay and with the purpose of disclosure, based on the most traditional principles of Catholic thought. Reading it is very useful to approach the subject, because it points out, in an orderly and clear fashion, a set of contemporary problems whose solution should be addressed. Raúl Madrid Buy via the internet at www.editionsducerf.fr

The Future and Hope. Life and Teaching of Cardinal Angelo Scola Il futuro e la speranza. Vita e magistero del Cardinale Angelo Scola Andrea Tornielli Piemmi Incontri Milan, 2011 189 pages

The author is a renowned vaticanist, who writes contributions to the journal “La Stampa” and other international journals, and has written, among others, seven books on the last pontificates, from Pius XII to Benedict XVI. This book is based on the knowledge Tornielli has acquired of Cardinal Scola through multiple interviews, which he hereby compiles, to develop a profile of the Cardinal, with selected material from the latter’s public speeches. The book is situated, at the beginning of the story, on June

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2011, which is when Cardinal Scola, then Patriarch of Venice, is appointed Archbishop of Milan by Benedict XVI, Europe’s largest diocese. According to Tornielli, some are surprised by this relocation that moves the head of one of the most important patriarchates of the world (a see from which came three popes in the twentieth century) to an archdiocese, although of similar characteristics, seeing in this relocation a situation that will stress the Cardinal’s importance in the coming conclave. The following pages are a tight summary of Scola’s biographical journey, in which his vigour as a man of thought and action is shown. A character of “great inner strength,” as Tornielli tells the Italian Minister of Cultural Heritage. The volume ends with an up-to-date bibliography of Scola’s 52 books. Tornielli is right to dedicate many pages to Scola’s early years, where his character is formed. His father, Carlo, truck driver by profession, was an active militant of Pietro Nenni’s (historical leader of the Italian Socialist Party) maximalist socialism. His mother, Regina, fervent Catholic, was the one who transmitted the faith to her two children. Scola was raised in Malgrate, near Lake di Como, in a very poor, but united and affectionate environment, where the mother’s Marian piety gave their home a special color. Angelo, born on 1941, used to accompany his father through paths with no tracks, in very slow machines whose wheel required a lot of arm-strength. The press that was brought home was the Catholic weekly Lecco—which Regina asked the children to circulate among neighbors—and the leftist Marxian “L’Unità” and “Avanti,” which she took care would not fall into the hands of the children. With humor Scola says, in passing, that he should be grateful to Antonio Gramsci (founder of the first of these journals) for having attended high school. In fact, it was because of reading Gramsci that his father became convinced that the most important thing for a man was education and so he did not spare himself a single sacrifice to provide it for his children. The providential presence in Malgrate of a very wise priest— Fausto Tuissi, who studied alongside Giussani—who settled there for health reasons, provided Scola with a path of cultural and religious maturation. Although the proximity to his father and some political enrolment would cool him at the end of his adolescence, soon after, when he started his studies at the university and contacted the mentor of Gioventù Studantesca—still tied to Catholic Action—Angelo discovers his vocation. “My encounter with don Giussani was for me, like for many others, a shining surprise

(...) My life changes at that moment.” He expresses it likewise on the day of his ordination: “Faith assimilated by osmosis from the priests and the parish was able to become for me the principle and the reason of my existence.” The Tridentine devotional model was no longer enough: “one had to start again from the existential requirements of man, give testimony of Christianity in the study and work environments, confront everyone to account for the faith,” Scola remembers. In chapters IV-VI Tornielli offers a rich historical-biographical synthesis in which the moments of personal formation of the protagonist are intertwined with the moments in which a community of people starts to take form, whose presence would prove to be of great significance for the post-conciliar Church, precisely in regarding the establishment of the true purpose of Vatican II. We thus see Scola, a philosophy student, still involved in politics as a member of the presidency of the Fuci, later to become a theology student at Freiburg. Soon after he becomes close to a teacher, Joseph Ratzinger, who had an enormous esteem for some young students of Communion and Liberation. Ratzinger delegates to Scola certain tasks pertaining to the publication inspired by the Swiss theologian Urs von Balthasar, Communio, which is an alternative to the widely circulated journal Concilium—which we can, using Benedict XVI’s language, identify today with what would be called the hermeneutic of rupture. The young Polish Bishop Karol Wojtyla appears, who was also close to von Balthasar; and certainly Giussani increasingly appears, who has Scola in mind to direct Communion and Liberation. He is received, along with his spiritual father, by John Paul II in 1979. Soon after, in 1982, he is called to teach theological anthropology at the John Paul II Institute for Studies on Marriage and Family, which was then directed by the now Bishop of Bologna, Cardinal Caffara, and where Stanislav and Ludmila Grygiel teach, who had come from Poland along Pope Wojtyla. Scola lived near Santa Maria Maggiore with other priests: Massimo Camisasca, Giacomo Tantardini, Giani Danzi, and Livio Melina (who currently directs the said Institute). There Camisasca founded the Fraternity of St Charles Borromeo. The occasions to meet John Paul II multiply. With the appointment of Joseph Ratzinger to the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith Scola becomes a consultant member. The second half of the book, that is chapters VII-XIV, covers his appointment as Bishop of Grosseto (Sufficit gratia tua would become his episcopal motto) and the intense pastoral work developed there between 1991 and 1995. Then he was appointed president of the Pontifical Lateran University by John Paul II—an office concomitant with the presidency of the John Paul II Institute (whose central session’s location is the Pontifical Lateran University), where he maintained his teaching post. Finally, the book also covers his appointment as Patriarch of Venice by John Paul II in

2002, where he conducted an administration that produced many events. This will conclude in 2011 with the visit of Benedict XVI to La Serenissima and the appointment of Scola as Archbishop of Milan. These are 21 years where the figure of the young priest grows— nurtured by the spiritual and personal proximity to the two popes that successively held Peter’s see at that time—until becoming, justifiably, one of the main personalities of the current Church. With great skill Tornielli covers in these seven chapters what others would have written in several volumes: he quotes significant documents (such as Scola’s first pastoral “You shall be truly free”); he narrates his most important formative events (from the reestablishment of the seminary of Grosseto, passing through his intense presidential administration at the PUL, until the creation of the Studium Generale Marcianum in Venice, a true contribution to the anthropological growth of the city, which covers from secondary school to higher studies on bioethics and cultural heritage, plus the Ph.D. in Canon Law). With this, plus some well-chosen references taken from his best known and recent books, we are able to understand the main interests that inspire the pastor and intellectual Angelo Scola. We stress some of them: first, the family, which transmits the faith and is the first educational environment, whose fundamental importance Scola stresses as the most solid anthropological support in a society that becomes more fluid every day. Second, the “educational emergency,” as Benedict XVI called it, which Scola considers the social question of our age. His reflections on liberty and subsidiarity are of special interest. Third, his elaborated thought regarding subjects such as tradition (“the concrete experience of tradition is alone what guarantee men and society the possession of a history, and thus the ability to be open to the future”), cultural identity, and the blending of civilizations (“not an ideal, but a process”), which is a thesis contrary to that of Huntington and the “clash of civilizations.” He materialized this last idea in Venice with the creation of the Oasis International Foundation and the homonymous magazine, which have been working for a decade in the Middle East. Fourth, his theses about the new laity and the common good and life, which he has concretely expounded in some books and conferences, where the freedom of the Church in the modern world is well explained, in order to reaffirm some principles inspiring legislations, which should not be confused with the idea that the Church should be a legislating body. Fifth, Scola was also a theologian and a spiritual writer, with books on John Paul II’s theological anthropology, on Hans Urs von Balthasar, and, regarding spirituality, on the mystery of Mary and of the Eucharist (Cardinal Angelo Scola was, in 2007, the general relator of the Bishops Synod on the Eucharist). Jaime Antúnez Aldunate Buy via the internet in www.edizpiemme.it

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The Pope and the Philosopher El Papa y el Filósofo Alberto Methol Ferré and Alver Metalli Editorial Biblos Buenos Aires, 2013 206 pages

The image resulting from this long interview with Methol Ferré is that of a “utopian realist.” His dream as from “Nexus,” the magazine he founded in 1955, is the unification of South America, the overcoming of national particularities in a federation—that revolves around the binomial Argentina-Brazil—similar to North American. This is the ideal from the generation of the Rodó, the Vasconcelos, the Ugarte, Fombona, Pereira, and Calderón. “To survive, Latin America must do something like what the United States of America did, but starting from itself, from its own originality of a Catholic cultural circle.” One must go over “the Disunited States of the South” to the “United States of the South,” an unavoidable process that is confirmed by the Mercosur, the Common Market of the South. From that integration the Church can only reap advantages: “strengthen the power, and therefore it empowers the mission of the Church when acting in relation to the power of the world. I am not referring to the abstract power, but to that authority that give peoples a vast horizon, that they are not mere provinces.” In the realism of this assertion there is something rather “romantic.” Metalli recalls that among the authors of Methol there is Friedrich Schlegel, to him is owed the encounter with the great Christian tradition and its key tenants. In fact, Methol defends the faith of the South American people, and to do this he also lays claim to the more authentic part of the theology of liberation. After the fall of the messianic, Marxisism, atheism, now the libertine atheism wins—as seen by Augusto del Noce—an enemy of everything that is popular. The enemy has changed; it no longer comes from Communism and not even from the sects. “The sects play a redeeming role for the social strata exposed as victims of the consumer society. They are like a therapy: they expand where libertine atheism generates larger devastation or, from another point of view, is more successful.” In front of all this, in front of a secularization process that hounds and dissolves popular faith, Methol, who collaborated for a long time with CELAM, lucidly sketches the stages of the Latin American Church, from Puebla to Santo Domingo. A picture that moves between hope—“the times are ripe for a theology and a philosophy of Christian history, globalizing” —and pessimism. “We find ourselves in a moment of tiredness, this is undeniable. The generation that made the Council, has practically disappeared. De Lubac, von Balthasar, Congar, Chenu, Danièlou, Rahner…. Those were years of intellectual splendor among the highest of the history of the Church. I do not see intellectual movements that may be compared, not even as an echo.” In Latin America the decline of liberation theology was not replaced by anything solid. “In a certain sense the ‘evaporation’ of liberation theology has diminished the thrust of the whole Latin American Church to assume the condition of the poor with courage. I believe that the Church is paying the price

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for having freed itself too easily from liberation theology, which should have done its highest contribution after the fall of Communism, not go off with Marxism. Today its absence must be replaced urgently.” An absence that not only refers to theological thought, but also concerns the organized laity: “sometimes someone blows the ashes and the fire starts again. But today it is not like that, there are only ashes left.” Then a tension begins to shape that is not easy to resolve, between the unification project of the “Catholic” continent and the reality of a faith that contributes to the propagation of a hedonist model of the masses. A tension that seems to dissolve today, thanks to the testimony of the first Latin American Pope, the friend Bergoglio, who when elected pontiff chose the name Francis. Methol knew that “the Church is the only subject present in the scenery of the contemporary world that can challenge libertine atheism.” The notion of “experience,” as Luigi Giussani had grasped with acuteness, is what is missing in contemporary Catholic thought, because the attraction of Christianity is more persuasive than the world only if it is an “experience” of a positivity that moves to affection and gratitude. Methol knew that. Converted in 1949 thanks to reading Gilbert K. Chesterton, he confessed that “through him I understood that existence is a gift, just as salvation and faith; one is Christian by gratitude.” As Metalli remarks, this is “something singular for such a rationalizing mind.” A mind that in the dense interview, offers us a first order vision of the political, cultural, and religious scenery of today’s Latin America. Massimo Borghesi Buy via the internet in www.editorialbiblos.com.ar

In Defense of Pius XII. The Reasons of History. In difesa di Pio XII. Le ragioni della storia Giovanni Maria Vian Marsilio Editori Venice, 2009 167 pages

This brief and interesting work compiled by G.M. Vian, Director of the L’Osservatore Romano, presents us a collection of articles that were published in the newspaper of the Holy See, during the year 2008, surrounding the figure of Pius XII, on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of his death (9 October, 1958), and the 60th of his election as Bishop of Rome (March 2, 1939).

A brief introduction by Giovanni María Vian offers the reasons for the publication of this series of contributions to L’Osservatore Romano by various historians and theologians, Hebrew and Catholic. The purpose is to show the historical importance of the figure and the pontificate of Eugenio Pacelli, who developed his pontificate precisely in one of the most difficult moments of the past century, and of the entire contemporary era. And, above all, to face the “black legend” of the supposed guilty silence of Pius XII, which modern historiography has shown as inconsistent. Such is the reason for the title of the work. The first contribution is by Paolo Mieli, historian and journalist, Director of the “Corrieri della Sera” and professor of the University of Milán, and is entitled “The Magnanimity of a Pope.” This historical study intends to explain the historical and ideological reasons why the “black legend” could have risen, and from thence refutes the legend from the same events, the testimonies of the protagonists of said events, and from the life of the Pope Pius XII. He also states that it is no less important to consider the Pope in relation to his contemporaries. Mieli asserts: “Then I ask myself: During the Second World War, who do we remember, among the personalities of the world who were against Nazism, who ever raised his/her voice against the anti-Jewish persecution in the way the Pope was reproached for not doing so? I know none.” The “silence” of the Pope has a much more profound,

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suffered and conscious, reason: under these circumstances the thing that would bring about less evil and save more live was considered. Because it was accompanied by real and effective rescue and refuge actions for countless persecuted and, in particular, the Jews in Rome and in different parts of Europe. In fact, the following contribution is from the Hebrew Saul Israel, Italian doctor and writer. It is an evocation, published posthumously, written in the Convent of Saint Antoine in Via Merulana, Rome, when he had taken refuge there, in April 1944. His beautiful reflection shows the harmony that he felt between the religion he had learned in his Hebrew family and what he perceived in those fateful days of life in a Franciscan convent. Undoubtedly solidarity is the main road to understanding and dialogue between religions. The largest contribution is that of the contemporary historian Andrea Riccardi, professor of the University of Rome. It is a well examined profile of Pius XII. It presents an historical viewpoint that allows the reader to understand the criteria of the pontifical performance, in order to make a just judgment, both beyond and from his time. However, it also presents the possible reasons that have led part of contemporary historiography to “revise” history and produce such a striking change since the publication of the famous film “The Vicar,” in 1963. It forms a hypothesis of the ideological reasons lying underneath and contrasts such vision with the real influence of the Pope in the post-war years and even, after his death, in Vatican II. Pius XII is the most quoted author in the documents of the Second Vatican Council, after biblical writings. Accordingly, and thereafter, Monsignor Rino Fisichella, Chairman of the Council for the Promotion of the New Evangelization, exposes the nucleus of Pius XII’s thought. He shows us that his Magisterium is an essential link between a modernity that had been underestimated by anti-modernist disputes and the Second Vatican Council, and its opening to the contemporary world. He highlights his love for the sciences and technology, his great culture and the significance of his historical documents, such as the case of the Divino Afflante Spiritu Encyclical on the renewal of the Biblical studies. The Cardinal Gianfranco Ravasi, Chairman of the Pontifical Council for Culture, and the Pontifical Commission for Sacred Archeology, describes the concept of culture that Pius XII’s Magisterium leaves us. He reviews the principal elements of his teaching, which is based on two pillars: the Natural Law and the teaching of Christ, which are found in a deep harmony. There is also a speech by Cardinal Tarcsio Bertone, at that time Secretary of State for Pope Benedict XVI, in which he covers the work of Secretary of State for Cardinal Eugenio Pacelli. He was truly a career diplomat with vocation. The text ends by picking up three speeches by Pope Benedict XVI

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on the occasion of these anniversaries, where he invites us to pick up the legacy of Pius XII, something that is prevented when the discussion centers on a point that is not just to his person, or his entire ministry. All these contributions are revealing and invite us to remember a figure that must not be forgotten easily, and above all, must the treated with the historical rigor deserved by a long pontificate, in a very difficult time, and that left the Church at the doors of the Second Vatican Council. The Archives of the Holy See are entirely available for all the scholars who wish to study the truth of that period and its protagonists. Rodrigo Polanco Buy via the internet in www.marsilioeditori.it

Dear Jihadists Chers Djihadistes Philippe Muray Fayard - Mille Et Une Nuits Paris, 2002 128 pages

Before reading the first line of Dear Jihadists, by Philippe Muray, the same author of The Empire of Good, we already know that we are facing an ironic book. Because as it was written a little after the Twin Towers attack, this is the only way someone can call “dear” the followers of Jihad. The title is the anteroom in which to make a serious and profound criticism of the West, which is the common enemy both of the book and the Jihadists, but from two absolutely distant and opposing views. The letter to the Jihadists develops as a criticism towards them, because with their attack “During a few days, you have prevented us from thinking about anything. We don’t forgive you. It will be difficult for us to forget this” (page 21). That is, with your terrorist attack that void silence of the West was broken, and almost forced them to think in something else than nothing. That is why you are blamed that “with your destructions you commit our de-constructions. With your annihilations you interfere with our nothingnesses.” (Page 26) The author talks to those who profess the Shahada from the West as a westerner. He tells them what they committed with their attack in the name of religion. Mainly he stops to explain what is

that they attack—or believe they attack—and to what discussions carried immediately after the events. What was discussed immediately after the fall of the Towers was whether Halloween should be celebrated or not. Muray tells us that “in several American cities, the school authorities drafted a circular suggesting that children should choose positive costumes for the party. Do realize, dear Jihadists, up to what point we are shielded. In any other civilization, different from ours, what we call positivity would have made their hair stand on end. But us, the Westerners, have even used the media to silence those who would dare make us conscious that we are living in a nightmare film.” (Page 36) This is the neurological point of the book. What is the West, what was attacked on September 11, 2001? What is this civilization that makes those who dare wake them up shut up? A first answer already gives us a sketch of what Philippe will be showing as the answer to the questions put forward: “Because it is most urgent, once again, that we know what our world is in order to start defending it as it were the continuation of something” (Page 46). That is, the West detached exactly from what founded it and made it big, and for this reason became something without-form, and therefore one cannot know what it is. This is why the Jihadists are blamed that “riding in our iron and fire elephants, you have entered with fury in our porcelain tent. But it is a porcelain tent whose owners, for a long time, have decided to smash to pieces everything that it had stored up. Furthermore, they survive only for that. And you have disturbed them. You are the first smashers that attack the destroyers; you are the first barbarians that take it with the vandals; the first arsonists that compete with the pyromaniacs” (p.25). That is, you attack the civilization that is set on self-destruction, therefore there is little damage that can be done. In the post-historic moment in which the West is now, of Fukuyama’s last man—quoted by the author—this attack will be fought and combated. It is a kind of song of the why we shall find these intelligent affirmations: “we shall fight without end because the end occurred a long time ago and we don’t even remember that. We shall fight for the pleasure of having forgotten our own end… and we shall win. Evidently. Because we are the most dead” (p.73). Lastly, the book that we describe is recommended not only because it remains ironic towards the outstanding figures that give life to the exhibition; it does not only underline what the press wrote at that moment, and it explains it and ridicules it, but going beyond that, this French thinker and essayist who died when he was only 56 years old, gives us a deep x-ray of what is happening currently in the West, how it reached the state of nothingness of which he talks, and how we live immersed in this without noticing it, and without doing much. Therefore, it is an illustrative book, illuminating and challenging our civilization. It is a philosophical

look and intellectual exposition in an elegant and amusing letter to the Dear Jihadists. Miguel Angel Contreras Buy via the internet in www.fayard.fr

Don Mauro’s Song La canción de dom Mauro Jacinto Peraire Ferrer Biblioteca de Autores Cristianos Madrid, 2006 224 pages

Despite abundant literature on the martyrs of religious persecution in Spain, before and during the Civil War, this short book by Jacinto Peraire contributes with numerous data that make its reading interesting. The author centers his investigation on the case of the Benedictines of Nuestra Señora del Pueyo, a monastery located near Barbastro. Peraire calls what was then a small town the “tragic capital of Aragón,” and justifies this characterisation with a brief summary of its martyrology: “The Bishop, 114 priests of the secular clergy, 5 seminarians, 51 missionaries of the Sacred Heart of Mary (3 of them priests and 48 young seminarians), 9 Piarist Fathers, and 18 Benedictine monks.” These are impressive and moving numbers, especially if one goes into the lives of each of these martyrs, and confirms the faith, joy, and strength with which they faced their sacrifice. The author presents us a biographical sketch of each of these Benedictine monks. Among them there were theologians who received their doctoral degree in Rome, but also peasants in charge of cattle or bee-keeping. All of them united by faith and monastic Benedictine discipline: ora et labora. They are human beings like everyone. At first, as soon as the situation in Barbastro, occupied by anarchic troops, was decided, the Prior, Dom Mauro, authorized the monks who wanted to save their lives to leave. Some of them accepted, with varying luck, this option. The great majority of them decided to stay, with martyrdom in sight.

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Yet they would have to wait for more than a month, with the certainty that night after night new victims were killed by the red troops. These were days of fervor, agony, and self-offering. Thrown out violently from the monastery, the future martyrs would live their last days in an improvised prison, located in the town’s square: the Piarist school. The seminarians of the Heart of Mary also waited there with their teachers, and other victims, though without being able to communicate with them. The reader feels attracted by the personality of the Prior, Dom Mauro Palazuelos, from the outset of the book. He was only 33 and had recently become the one with the highest role in the community. A joyful and modest man of profound faith, he would be from the beginning the fervent leader of his spiritual children. He would prepare them, with his words and example, not only for a serene wait but also for a true longing for the time of martyrdom. Of Dom Mauro’s death we have a very faithful account due to the murderer’s own confession. Several months after the sacrifice of the Benedictines, this man told the facts to the woman in whose house he was staying in Barbastro. The night the monks were taken out of the prison to get on a truck that would take them to the sacrificial place, they left the place chanting and cheering for Christ, which infuriated the troops. The victims were harshly beaten with the handles of the troops’ guns, yet they were not silenced. Dom Mauro asked to follow the truck by foot, and so he did. At a given moment, when already on the road, and when passing in front of the hospital, he asked permission to say goodbye to his mother. The militiamen did not understand. They thought she was hospitalized, but the Prior turned to the high hill of Pueyo, where the monastery stood out against the sky at dawn, and powerfully chanted the Salve Regina. Infuriated, the militiaman that guarded him executed Dom Mauro right there, firing his weapon at the monk’s face. But the latter’s kind gaze penetrated his soul, and he could not forget it. Obsessed, he confessed to the woman his numerous crimes, and when she dared to talk about God he answered that his crimes were too many to be forgiven. He was never to be heard of again. Only this testimony remained at the time when the Church would request the records to open the causes for canonization. The reader finishes the book with the hope that the martyr that broke the hardness of heart of the one who murdered him also had the power to bring God’s infinite mercy on his soul. Gisela Silva Encina Buy via the internet in www.bac-editorial.com

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A Bishop Against Hitler Un vescovo contro Hitler Stefania Falasca San Paolo Cinisello Balsamo (MI), 2006 277 pages

The onset and failure of the German National Socialist project is the stage on which the life of Cardinal Clemens August von Galen (1878-1946) took place. He was the leader of one of the most brave and ferocious resistance group against that totalitarian regime. Italian journalist Stefania Falasca, who has for many years researched the history of the Church, offers in this book a nice biographical profile of the Bishop of Münster, von Galen, and also an extraordinary reconstruction of his relationship to Pius XII during the 1930s and 40s (the interwar and Second World War period). This work is essential for anyone interested in one of the most exciting chapters of the history of the Church in the twentieth century and its relation to politics. It is based on excellent research and is a contribution insofar as it explores the Church’s unconditional opposition to totalitarian Nazism, thus proving the inexistence of any attitude of compliance by the clergy towards Hitler’s regime and its aberrations. The focus of the study is the constant pastoral work against Nazism by Bishop von Galen, so the story’s thread crosses different temporal and geographical regions. It investigates exciting moments of his work at the Diocese of Münster, the German Catholic Church, and his relationship with the Holy See. Organized in three parts, A Bishop against Hitler allows the reader to encounter the most notable events of the hostilities between the regime and the Church, and to fix a picture of the actions undertaken by the German Catholic opposition—and certainly by von Galen—against the Third Reich. All this is supplemented by an accurate contextualization that allows us to understand the development of the events in their own time, which are narrated in a fluid and orderly fashion. In the first part, the author presents a biographical sketch of Bishop Clemens von Galen, his familial origins, the first steps of his priestly vocation, and his pastoral work in Germany. She penetrates with great depth into the notable actions of the Bishop against the Nazi regime, above all into those that are engraved in German historical conscience and that have given him worldwide fame. Under the Episcopal motto Nec laudibus, nec timore, von Galen articulated a tenacious anti-Nazi resistance: in his first letter, he denounced the adoration of race spread in The Myth of the Twen-

tieth Century by Alfred Rosenberg, a National Socialist ideologue. Risking his life, von Galen delivered memorable homilies against the abuses perpetrated by the unjust regime. Falasca highlights those vivid speeches of the summer of 1941, which led him to be known worldwide as the “Lion of Münster.” Moreover, von Galen, aware of the anti-religious feeling Nazism inspired, denounced the sanguinary persecution of Jews, yet always trying not to increase the regime’s hostilities. Hitler’s totalitarianism aimed at erasing all kinds of religious life from the German nation, and certainly Christianity was in the mind of the Nazi hierarchs: once Judaism was annihilated and National Socialism indefinitely imposed, the solution of the “Christian problem” would only be a matter of time. As the author correctly says, the vigour of von Galen’s words led Joseph Goebbels, Reich minister of propaganda, to point out that this was “the most forceful attack against Nazism in all its years of existence.” Despite the fact that von Galen was closely spied on by the Gestapo, his intense and brave pastoral work gave impetus to exemplary support by the faithful, who travelled from abroad to listen to the message of the Bishop, and at the same time illegally reproduced and circulated his homilies. Furthermore, the author successfully penetrates into the Bishop’s character: his lucid and firm action grounded on a solid inner life served as a testimony of a brave Catholic during adverse times. The relationship between the Lion of Münster and Eugenio Pacelli (who would later become Pius XII) is the subject of the second part of the book. Many meetings between both personalities since the 1920s—years in which Pacelli officiated as Apostolic Nuncio to Berlin and von Galen worked as parish priest at St Matthias—until Pius XII appointed von Galen to the College of Cardinals, are useful

to know in order to appreciate the high esteem the Pontiff had for von Galen’s pastoral work and defence of the Church. This is confirmed by Pius XII’s support during the difficult political times Germany underwent for many years. In fact, Pacelli constantly sent notes to the German government in 1934, condemning Rosenberg’s doctrines just as von Galen had done in his pastoral letter. Soon after that, Hermann Göring, Minister of the Interior for Prussia, published his Decree on Political Catholicism, where he harshly questions the participation of Catholics in politics. Von Galen’s participation in the preparation of the encyclical would be essential, whose condemnation of race-and-blood ideology was read in all German pulpits in March 1937. The third and last part of the book has unquestionable historiographical value, insofar as this is the first time (and in Spanish) that the complete correspondence between Pius XII and Bishop von Galen is published. The documents, dated between 1940 and 1946, are a rich source (little known until now) of information on, and the details of, the relationship between the Holy See and the German Church as manifested in the relationship between Pius XII and Bishop von Galen. Besides the three parts we have reviewed, the book offers an Appendix in which other sources are published, among which are some emblematic writings by von Galen, vgr. his homilies of the summer of 1941 and his last public speeches. Other documents of high ecclesiastical personalities of the German Church are also included. The heroic virtues which von Galen incarnated in this crucial time led to the opening of the cause for his beatification, requested by his successor during the pontificate of Pius XII and positively concluded on October 9, 2005, the day in which Clemens von Galen was beatified. José Manuel Castro Torres Buy via the internet in www.edizionisanpaolo.it

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About the Authors CARDINAL ANGELO SCOLA. Archbishop of Milan. Patriarch of Venice from 2002 to 2011. Former Rector of the Pontificia Università Lateranense. JUAN DE DIOS VIAL CORREA. Former Rector of the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile. President Emeritus of the Pontifical Academy for Life. Member of the Academy of Science of the Institute of Chile. HUMANITAS Editorial Committee member. IAN KER. Priest and Professor of Theology at Oxford University. He has taught in other universities in the UK and USA. He is regarded as world’s authority on Blessed John Henry Newman, on whom he has published over 20 books, among which there is Newman’s universally acknowledged definitive biography. ALVER METALLI. Italian Journalist and Writer. ANTONIO SUÁREZ. Philosopher and Scientist. Contributor to Studi Cattolici, Milan. JOSÉ GRANADOS DCJM. Vice-President of the Pontifical Institute John Paul II for Studies on Marriage and Family in both Washington DC and Rome. ROBERT SPAEMANN. Philosopher. He has taught in the Universities of Stuttgard, Heidelberg, and Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität of Munich. Member of the Pontifical Academy for Life, and member of the Academy of Science of the Institute of Chile. REINHARD HÜTTER. Professor of Theology at Divinity School, Duke University, USA. GIOVANNI CUCCI. Jesuit Priest. Member of the team of contributors of La Civiltà Cattolica. His article was published in La Civiltà Cattolica n° 3834.

AUTHORS IN THE CHURCH AND THE WORLD and Books: RÉMI BRAGUE. French Philosopher. He teaches Greek, Roman, and Arab Philosophy at the Sorbonne, and at the Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich. He has been a visiting professor at many institutions around the world. He is the recipient of numerous awards, including the 2012 Ratzinger Prize of Theology. He was named member of the Council of Consultants and Collaborators of HUMANITAS Review this year DOM LOUIS-MARIE GEYER D’ORTH OSB. Abbot, Sainte-Madelaine Abbey. MASSIMO BORGHESI. Professor of Moral Philosphy at Perugia University. VITTORIO MESSORI. Italian Jpurnalist and Writer. MONSIGNOR DOMINIQUE REY. Bishop of Frejus-Toulon, France RAÚL MADRID. Philosopher and Professor at the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile Law School. RODRIGO POLANCO. Priest and Professor of Thology at Professor at the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile. GISELA SILVA ENCINA. Chilean historian and writer. MANUEL AROSTEGUI ESNALOA. Spanish Priest and Theologian.

VERÓNICA GRIFFIN. Editor and regular contributor to HUMANITAS Review. MONSIGNOR GONZALO DUARTE. Bishop of Valparaíso.

EDITORIAL COMMITTEE Jaime Antúnez. Director of Humanitas review. PhD in Philosophy. Member of the Academy of Social, Political and Moral Sciences of the Institute of Chile. Hernán Corral. PhD in Law. Former Dean and Professor of the Faculty of Law, University of Los Andes. Member of the Academy of Social, Political and Moral Sciences of the Institute of Chile. Samuel Fernández. PhD in Theology. Former Dean and Professor of the Faculty of Theology of the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile. Director of the Padre Alberto Hurtado Study Center. Gabriel Guarda O.S.B. Abott Emeritus of the Benedictine Monastery of St. Trinity of Las Condes. National Prize for History, l984. Member of the History Academy of the Institute of Chile. René Millar. PhD in History. Former Dean of the Faculty of History, Geography and Political Sciences of the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile. Full Professor of the History Institute. Member of the History Academy of the Institute of Chile. Ricardo Riesco. PhD in Geography. Rector of the University de San Sebastián. Member of the Academy of Social, Political and Moral Sciences of the Institute of Chile. Francisco Rosende. Dean of the Faculty of Economic and Administrative Sciences of the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile. Master of Arts in Economics, Chicago. Juan de Dios Vial Correa. Former Rector of the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile. Former President of the Pontifical Academy for Life. Member of the Academy of Sciences of the Institute of Chile. Arturo Yrarrazával. PhD in Law. Former Dean of the Faculty of Law of the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile.

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Council of Consultants and Collaborators Héctor Aguer: Archbishop of La Plata, Argentina. Anselmo Álvarez O.S.B: Abbot of Santa Cruz del Valle de los Caídos. Carl Anderson: Supreme Knight of the Knights of Columbus. Andrés Arteaga: Assistant Bishop of Santiago, professor at the Faculty for Theology, Pontifical Catholic University of Chile (PUC). Francisca Alessandri: Professor, Faculty for Journalism, PUC. Antonio Amado: Professor of Metaphysics, University of Los Andes. Felipe Bacarreza: Bishop of Los Ángeles, Chile. Remi Brague: Ratzinger Prize 2012. «Romano Guardini» chair at the Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, Germany. Jean-Louis Bruguès O.P: Secretary of the Congregation for Catholic Education, Bishop Emeritus of Angers, France. Massimo Borghesi: Italian philosopher, senior professor of the University of Perugia, Italy. Rocco Buttiglione: Italian political philosopher. Carlos Francisco Cáceres: Member of the Academy of Social, Political and Moral Sciences, Institute of Chile. Cardinal Carlo Caffarra: Archbishop of Bolonia, Italy. Stratford Caldecott: Director of The Centre for Faith and Culture, Oxford. Cardinal Antonio Cañizares: Prefect of the Congregation for Divine Cult and the Discipline of Sacraments. Jorge Cauas Lama: Member of the Academy of Social, Political and Moral Sciences, Institute of Chile. Guzmán Carriquiry: Secretary of the Pontifical Commission for Latin America. William E. Carroll: Aquinas Fellow in Theology and Science, Blackfriars. Faculty of Theology, University of Oxford. Alberto Caturelli: Argentine philosopher. Cesare Cavalleri: Director of Studi Cattolici, Milan, Italy. Fernando Chomalí: Archbishop of Concepción. Member of the Pontifical Academia Pro Vita, PUC. Francisco Claro: Dean of the Faculty for Education, PUC. Jesús Colina: Director of Aleteia. Ricardo Couyoumdjian: Professor History Institute, PUC. Member of the History Academy, Institute of Chile. Mario Correa Bascuñán: Secretary General PUC, professor at the Law Faculty, PUC. Francesco D’Agostino: Professor of Philosophy of Law at the University Tor Vergata of Rome, former President of the National Bioethic Committee of Italy. Adriano Dell’Asta: Professor, Catholic University, Milan, Italy. Vittorio di Girólamo: Professor, University Gabriela Mistral. Carmen Domínguez: Lawyer, Director of the PUC Centre for the Family. Carlos José Errázuriz: Consultant of the Congregation for the Doctrine of Faith, professor at Pontifical Università della Santa Croce. Luis Fernando Figari: Founder of “Sodalicio de Vida Cristiana”, Lima, Peru. Alfredo García Quesada: Pontifical Consultant for the Cultural Council, professor of the Pontifical and Civil Faculty of Theology, Lima, Peru. Juan Ignacio González: Bishop of San Bernardo, Chile. Stanislaw Grygiel: Polish philosopher, tenured lecturer of the John Paul II Chair, Lateranense University, Rome. Raúl Hasbun: Priest of the Schöenstatt Congregation, professor at the Pontifical Senior Seminary of Santiago. Henri Hude: French philosopher, former Rector of the Stanislas College, Paris. Lydia Jiménez: Director of the Secular Institute Cruzadas de Santa María. Gonzalo Ibáñez Santa-María: Professor and former Rector of University Adolfo Ibáñez. José Miguel Ibáñez Langlois: Theologian and poet. Raúl Irarrázabal Covarrubias: Architect, President of the Chilean Association of the Order of Malta. Paul Johnson: British historian. Jean Laffitte: Bishop of Entrevaux. Secretary of the Pontifical Council for the Family. Nikolaus Lobkowicz: Director of the Eastern and Central European Studies Institute, University of Eichstätt, Germany.

Alfonso López Quintás: Spanish philosopher. Regular member of the Royal Spanish Academy of Moral and Political Sciences. Alejandro Llano: Spanish philosopher, former Rector of the University of Navarra, Spain. Raúl Madrid: Professor, Law Faculty, PUC. Patricia Matte Larraín: Member of the Academy of Social, Political and Moral Sciences, Institute of Chile. Mauro Matthei O.S.B: Benedictine monk and priest. Historian. Cardinal Jorge Medina: Prefect Emeritus of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments. Javier Martínez Fernández: Archbishop of Granada, Spain. Carlos Ignacio Massini Correas: Professor at the National University of Cuyo, Argentina. Livio Melina: President of the John Paul II Pontifical Institute for Studies of Marriage and the Family. Augusto Merino: Political Scientist, professor at University Adolfo Ibáñez. Dominic Milroy O.S.B: Monk at Ampleforth, former Rector of the Ampleforth College, York (G.B.). Antonio Moreno: Archbishop Emeritus of Concepción, Chile. Fernando Moreno: Philosopher, Director of the Political Science Program, University Gabriela Mistral. Rodrigo Moreno Jeria: Member of the Chilean Academy of History. Máximo Pacheco Gómez: Former Minister of State, Ambassador to the Holy See, member of the Academy of Social, Political and Moral Sciences, Institute of Chile. José Miguel Oriol: President of Editorial Encuentro, Madrid, Spain. Mario J. Paredes: Director of Catholic Ministries at American Bible Society. Francesco Petrillo O.M.D: General Superior of the Orden de la Madre de Dios. Bernardino Piñera: Archbishop Emeritus of La Serena, Chile. Aquilino Polaino-Lorente: Spanish psychiatrist. Cardinal Paul Poupard: President Emeritus of the Pontifical Council for Culture. Javier Prades: Dean of the Faculty for Theology at San Dámaso, Madrid, Spain. Member of the International Theological Commission. Dominique Rey: Bishop of Tréjus-Toulon, France. Héctor Riesle: Former Ambassador to the Holy See and the UNESCO. Florián Rodero L.C: Professor of Theology, Athenaeum Regina Apostolorum, Rome. Alejandro San Francisco: Professor at the Institute of History, PUC. Romano Scalfi: Director of the Christian Russia Center, Milan, Italy. Cardinal Angelo Scola: Archbishop of Milan. David L. Schindler: Director of the John Paul II Institute for Studies of Marriage and the Family, Washington D.C., U.S.A. Josef Seifert: President of the Liechtenstein International Academy of Philosophy, Granada, Spain. Gisela Silva Encina: Writer. Robert Spaemann: German philosopher. Paulina Taboada: Medical doctor, member of the Pontifical Academy Pro Vita. William Thayer Arteaga: Member of the Academy of Social, Political and Moral Sciences, Institute of Chile. Olga Uliánova: Ph. D. in History, University of Lomonosov, Moscow. Researcher at the University of Santiago. Luis Vargas Saavedra: Professor, Faculty of Literature, PUC. Miguel Ángel Velasco: Director of Alfa y Omega, Madrid, Spain. Juan Velarde Fuertes: Member of the Royal Spanish Academy of Moral and Political Sciences. Príncipe de Asturias Prize in Social Sciences (1992). Aníbal Vial: Former Rector of University Santo Tomás. Pilar Vigil: Medical doctor, member of the Pontifical Academy Pro Vita. Richard Yeo O.S.B: Abbot and President of the Benedictine Congregation, England. Diego Yuuki S.J: Former Director of the Museum of the 26 Martyrs of Japan, Nagasaki.

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