Friday, February 20, 2015

Joseph Ratzinger's Hometown

Easter Monday 2012 "Georgi Ritt" (George's Ride) Traunstein

In Traunstein, which even today he calls his real "hometown" (1937-1946), a new phase of life began for the ten-year-old Joseph Ratzinger, also. He now started the first year at the "humanistic" gymnasium, the secondary school that offered classical languages. It now took him a half hour to walk to school, but that did not bother him at all, for now at least he had "ample time for looking about and reflecting, but also for reviewing what I had learned in school" (M 22). The instruction in Latin suited him. For the rest of his life he would be grateful that he had learned the language of the Church "with old-fashioned rigor and thoroughness" (M 23), for later as a theologian he could read source material from almost two thousand years of Church history in the original texts. Greek, the language in which the New Testament was originally composed, was also in the curriculum. These two ancient languages became his favorite subjects--[in Traunstein].
My Brother the Pope, George Ratzinger (as told by Michael Hesemann), pp. 94-95

This was the town of the second decade of his life with it's solid academic foundation in which he began the year before the Nazi reprogramming thereof. "But thank God that a concession was made: whoever had already begun under the old system of the humanistic gymnasium could conclude his studies by and large according to that model, the plan being of course that this form of education would die out on its own." (M 24)
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