Friday, January 15, 2016

The Inimitable Ratzinger Fairness and Refined Frankness: Intellectual Charity in Every Respect!


Dietmar Mieth, an old Tübingen colleague recalls a lecture given by Father Edward Schillebeeckx in that German university. Küng and Ratzinger were sitting near the podium where the Belgian theologian spoke, while he questioned the authority of the Church. Küng then spoke and described a future in which he imagined how the Church could be reformed. Ratzinger kept quiet. During the time for questions someone from the audience asked for Ratzinger's opinion. "He went up to the podium and refuted what his colleagues had just said. He did it indirectly. He did not say that what the others had said were stupidities, but rather used a bunch of citations from the history of the Church and from theology, texts by memory from Hegel and Schelling and of many other authors, and many other references, to finally arrive at the conclusion that the propositions of his colleagues were based on over-simplifications."

Balthasar's assessment would be much more direct, saying later of Küng,
"Hans Küng is no longer Christian: for him Christ is no more than a prophet; it's just a matter of seeing if he is greater than Buddha or Mohammed. Küng now represents only himself, and has nothing to say neither to the Catholics nor to the Protestants."

Even Rahner himself would eventually say of Küng,
"Hans Küng cannot be considered an authentic exponent of the Catholic understanding of Christianity."

Benedicto XVI, Pablo Banco, Barcelona: Planeta 2010, 200-201
(Plinthos translation)

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