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Benedict XVI: The Man Who Was Ratzinger [Hardcover]

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Item Specifications...

Pages   182
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 0.75" Width: 5.75" Height: 8.5"
Weight:   0.8 lbs.
Binding  Hardcover
Release Date   Oct 15, 2005
Publisher   Spence Publishing Company
ISBN  1890626635  
EAN  9781890626631  

Availability  0 units.

Item Description...
Though the election to the papacy of Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger stunned the world, very few expressed doubt about the direction in which the allegedly authoritarian pope would lead the Catholic Church. Yet Benedict XVI is likely to surprise those expecting uncritical adherence to the policies of John Paul II, according to a new biography by Michael Rose, author of the bestselling Goodbye, Good Men. The first biographer seriously to probe Benedict's vast intellectual record, Rose sheds penetrating new light on the man who was Ratzinger.

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More About Michael S. Rose

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Michael S. Rose is the author of the New York Times bestseller Goodbye, Good Men. Educated at Brown University and the University of Cincinnati, he has written five previous books and is the Web Editor of the New Oxford Review. Mr Rose's work has appeared in the Wall Street Journal, New York Newsday, The American Conservative, and Catholic World Report. He is married with five children.

Michael S. Rose currently resides in Cincinnati. Michael S. Rose was born in 1969.

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1Books > Subjects > Biographies & Memoirs > Leaders & Notable People > Religious   [4202  similar products]
2Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Catholicism > Popes   [79  similar products]
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Reviews - What do our customers think?
The inspirational story reveling the truth behind the myth of "Hitler's Pope"  Mar 15, 2006
Benedict XVI: The Man Who Was Ratzinger by Michael S. Rose is the inspirational story reveling the truth behind the myth of "Hitler's Pope" and what actualities grant Pope Pius XII the prestigious role he has taken on as the pope guiding millions of Catholics. As Benedict XVI introduces the realities of the new pope's history, it reveals an untold and heroic story of his struggle in earlier years for the relief of Jews in the midst of their own struggle with the Nazi reign. A highly recommended read for all non-specialist general readers, as well as seminary students of Catholic history, Benedict XVI is to be given high praise for its outstanding information and willingness to reveal it.
A must read for all   Feb 25, 2006
One of the best books I have seen written on the issues facing Pope Benedict XVI and how he may adress them.

Right into the thick of it  Feb 22, 2006
Many of the books that have shown up since the election of Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger as supreme pontiff have followed a predictable formula: recount the last weeks of John Paul II's life; provide a quick biography of the late pope; describe the process for electing a new pope, followed by the actual events of the funeral and conclave; provide a quick biography of the *new* pope; and then finish up with a summary of "the challenges facing the new leader of the world's largest church." I think I've read at least a half-dozen books that follow precisely that formula.

Fortunately, Michael S. Rose has skipped all that introductory material and has dived right into the controversy. I admit to not having read his other work, but I have checked out The New Oxford Review, the website of which he edits, from time to time, and have always come away thinking I needed to spend more time in those pages. Here, he's done an excellent job as a partisan for Pope Benedict XVI and the Church's traditional teachings on doctrinal matters. And "partisan" it clearly is. The Pope's many American critics are not going to find a warm, loving embrace within these pages. But readers sympathetic to him and what he is trying to achieve will certainly appreciate Rose's energetic defense of the man.

The best way to summarize Benedict's approach to the many controversies he has to deal with might be to quote these lines from a 1999 "notification" reproduced on page 102: "[T]he promotion of errors and ambiguities is not consistent with a Christian attitude of true respect and compassion: Persons who are struggling with homosexuality, no less than any others, have the right to receive the authentic teaching of the Church from those who minister to them." Rose does a very thorough job of showing how "the man who was Ratzinger" did as cardinal, and no doubt will as Pope, apply that standard on issues from homosexuality, to the remnants of "liberation theology," to inter-faith dialogue, and much more. With the theological and religious Left still hanging on to power and influence in the American church, I think Catholics (and outsiders) of a more traditional bent will not only enjoy, but learn and even draw strength from, Rose's uncompromising approach and vigorous style. This book won't be to every readers' taste, but some readers, I think, will find it exactly the bracing, inspiring read they're looking for.
One of the strangest public dramas of recent years was played out after the long-anticipated death of Pope John Paul II. Odd enough to watch as the MSM and the Left, which pretty much loathe everything he stood for and the institution he served, praised him unreservedly, but then we were treated to the bizarre spectacle of them assuring each other that the Church would now have to turn to a more "liberal" pope, who would free the Church of the moral baggage JPII had left behind. And, one thing for sure, no way could Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, who's even more conservative, possibly be chosen to succeed him. Certainly the Church would have to seek to popularize its product by picking someone who would loosen doctrine enough to fit in with the postmodernist and relativist intellectual trends of secular Europe and Blue America, right? Well, we all know how that turned out. Perhaps folks who don't believe in Christianity in the first place ought not try to figure out how or why a man becomes Pope?

Michael S. Rose, on the other hand, is a devout Catholic, author of the devastating book, Goodbye, Good Men, about the damage the Church did itself by recruiting gay priests, and web editor of the feisty New Oxford Review. In this brief but immensely useful polemic he outlines the challenges facing the new Pope and explains why Joseph Ratzinger may well have been the ideal man to confront them at this moment in the Church's history. Contrary to the expectations of the punditocracy and liberal Catholics, he suggests that:

If any one point of reference can be taken as an augury of his papacy, it is Pope Benedict's clarion call to resist what he calls "the dictatorship of relativism." [...] He defines this prevailing philosophy as one that "recognizes nothing as definitive and leaves as the ultimate standard one's own personality and desires." In other words, according to the relativist philosophy, people who disagree on moral and social issues can be equally right.

And if the defense of morality does prove unpopular in those segments of the West where gay marriage, abortion, multiculturalism, political correctness and the like are all the rage? Well, this Pope has said that the time may have come for a "mustard seed Church":

The maximization of the number of faithful is not Pope Benedict's strategic objective. In 1995...Cardinal Ratzinger shocked the Catholic world by suggesting that it may need to disregard the notion of a "popular Church" that will be loved by everyone. He once wrote of the eighteenth-century Church, roiled by the Enlightenment, that it was "a Church reduced in size and diminished in social prestige, yet become fruitful from a new interior power, a power that released new formative forces for the individual and for society." Similarly, his governing metaphor for the short-term destiny of Catholicism is the mustard seed (Matthew 13:31-32), suggesting a much smaller presence but with a faith whose dimensions could move mountains.

Now, it seems at least possible that a Church that adheres to a strict moral vision will be more appealing than one that does not, but, regardless, it can hardly be the role of the Church fathers to trim their beliefs just to truckle to pop culture. That would be a betrayal of faith and of the Church.

In the chapters that follow, Mr. Rose treats topics like the threat from radical Islam, potential damage from a too compromising ecumenism, the culture of death (or the "anti-culture of death" as the new Pope has aptly named it), the crisis of pedophile and gay priests, and reform of Church doctrine, bureaucracy and trappings. By the time he's done it's apparent that the Pope has a pretty full plate in front of him, but there also seems reason to hope that the man who was Ratzinger is up to all these challenges.

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