Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI has defended his interpretation of the abuse crisis, in a brief statement four months after his original essay on the subject.
In a message to Herder Korrespondenz, the Pope Emeritus said that his critics had overlooked “the central issue I wanted to raise”, which was the centrality of God.
Why was it under-reported?
Benedict’s interventions, which were once headline news, have become less significant in themselves, as he has made clear that he still wants to comment on the matters of the day – even if indirectly. His dramatic statement in April, a 6,000-word essay, proved that much.
Yet Benedict thinks his point was missed. As well as linking the Church’s moral collapse to the sexual revolution, he argued that we “must learn again to recognise God as the foundation of our life instead of leaving Him aside”.
What will happen next?
Perhaps there is still more to come from Benedict’s pen: he told Herder Korrespondenz that his critics had only confirmed “the seriousness of the situation” in which “the word ‘God’ often appears to be on the margins, even in theology”. It appears that Benedict feels the great themes of his life, as theologian and pope, still need emphasising.
However, some commentators have argued that Benedict should be encouraged to keep his silence, and that his interventions are undermining Pope Francis.
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