CATHOLIC NEWS OF THE WEEK . Saturday, 15 December 2018

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Criticism against Pope Francis is foolish prejudice Pope Benedict says

VATICAN (CNS): “These small volumes reasonably demonstrate that Pope Francis is a man with profound philosophical and theological formation and are helpful to see the interior continuity between the two pontificates, even with all the differences in style and temperament,” Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI wrote on the occasion of the launching of a new book collection titled, The Theology of Pope Francis.
 
Authored by several notable theologians and edited by Roberto Repole, president of the Italian Theological Association, the 11-volume set was introduced by Monsignor Dario Vigano, prefect of the Vatican Secretariat for Communication, on March 12 at the Sala Marconi in Palazzo Pio.
 
Pope Benedict XVI applauded the publication of the book collection and defended the continuity of the Church’s teaching under his successor and dismissed those who criticise the pope’s theological foundations.
 
In a letter to Monsigor Vigano, Pope Benedict wrote that The Theology of Pope Francis, “Contradicts the foolish prejudice of those who see Pope Francis as someone who lacks a particular theological and philosophical formation, while I would have been considered solely a theorist of theology with little understanding of the concrete lives of today’s Christian.” 
 
Monsigor Vigano recounted that he sent a message to both Pope Francis and Pope Benedict about the publication of book series. 
 
He also asked Pope Benedict if he would be “willing to write a page or a page and a half of dense theology in his clear and punctual style that would have liked to read this evening.”
 
Instead, the retired pope “wrote a beautiful, personal letter,” Monsignor Vigano said.
 
Pope Benedict has made no secret of his affection for and admiration of Pope Francis.
 
During the celebration of the 65th anniversary of his priestly ordination on 28 June 2016, Pope Benedict expressed his gratitude to Pope Francis, saying that his goodness “from the first moment of your election, in every moment of my life here, touches me deeply.”
 
He said, “More than the beauty found in the Vatican Gardens, your goodness is the place where I live; I feel protected.” 

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