Pope Ratzinger reissued comments he had made in the past concerning 'true churches.'
His document states that the Orthodox Churches are defective and Protestant Churches are not 'true churches.'
He would hate Brian McLaren's wonderful book "A Generous Orthodoxy," because to him there is nothing generous about orthodoxy, and there is nothing generous about the grace of God, and nothing innately generous in Jesus. The church, to him, is one church standing on one principle. McLaren's book is brilliant AND generous because he chronicles virtually all the expressions of Christianity and finds something unique and beautiful in each movement of Christianity.
The thing to remember is, at its core, Christianity is a movement. Or ought to be a movement. Jesus didn't come so much to establish a new world religion but to reform Judaism. Judaism, ironically, was in the midst of a huge reform at that time and Christianity moved in a new and different direction. Somehow when we drive throughout cities across the world and see churches, large institutions I suspect that Jesus would have been surprised.
I was raised and my post high school education was in Roman Catholic Seminaries. I went to a Roman Catholic Seminary College and a Roman Catholic Seminary in the 1970's. It was an amazing, dynamic, and incredible fertile and exciting time to be studying in RC institutions. The RC church was in the midst of great reform and there were exciting conversations. When John Paul was elected to be Pope in 1978 that excitement and reform did not only die, it was crushed. JP ordered his trusted advisor, Ratzinger, to crush any signs of life. When Ratzinger was elected Pope he decided to finish crushing what little JP had missed.
Ecumenical dialogue with the Roman Catholic Church is over. But some people live in dreamland. I quote from the MSNBC website:
Father Augustine Di Noia, undersecretary for the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, said the document did not alter the commitment for ecumenical dialogue, but aimed to assert Catholic identity in those talks.
“The Church is not backtracking on ecumenical commitment,” Di Noia told Vatican radio.Does this man live in dreamland? Dialogue only takes place when two or more parties come together, recognizing that no one is totally correct and that we all have much to learn. If one is totally correct and the only correct one in the room, there is no longer dialogue.
It is, in my mind, a total disgrace. Most Roman Catholics are not arrogant and recognize that they have much to learn from others----and much to give. Their Pope is an embarassment.
I refuse to call him "Benedict." St. Benedict was a great man, a holy man, and a uniter. Pope Ratzinger does not deserve the name until he learns from Benedict's generous spirit.