Thursday, January 17, 2008

What is a Pope to say?

Important words from a talk that wasn't given. Here is the conclusion of Pope Benedict XVI's remarks to University of Rome La Sapienza - From Michael Dubruiel's Annunciations blog

If however, reason, solicitous of its presumed purity, becomes deaf to the great message that comes from the Christian faith and its wisdom, it would wither up like a tree whose roots no longer reach the waters that give it life. It would lose its courage for the truth and will stop being great - it would diminish.

Applied to our European culture, this means: if reason wishes to self-construct itself circumscribed by its own argumentation and that which convinces it for the moment, and - preoccupied with its secularity - cuts itself off from the roots through which it lives, then it does not become more reasonable and pure, but will decompose and break up.

With this, I return to our starting point. What does the Pope have to do or say in the university? Certainly, he should not seek to impose the faith in authoritarian fashion, because faith can only be given in freedom.

Beyond his ministry as Pastor of the Church and on the basis of the intrinsic nature of this pastoral ministry, it is his task to keep alive the sensitivity for truth; to invite reason ever anew to set itself to a quest for the truth, for goodness, for God; and along this path, call on it to be aware of the useful lights that have emerged throughout the history of the Christian faith, and thereby to perceive Jesus Christ as the Light who illumines history and helps us find the way to the future.

1 comment:

Athos said...

Father Raymond Desouza weighs in at the Catholic Education Resource Center, Shunning a truth-seeker.

Note well the last link in his essay,

The pope's sin, for which some of the faculty of La Sapienza believed he should not be allowed to speak at that university, was a speech he gave nearly 20 years ago in which, they claimed, he indicated support for the 17th-century heresy trial against Galileo.
See “Ratzinger's 1990 remarks on Galileo”.