Benedict XVI on Vatican II announces date of 1st encyclical

Papa, il 25 esce prima enciclica
‘Provvidenziale pubblicazione nel giorno unita’ cristiani’

Pope Benedict XVI – ANSA

The Pope announced at his Wednesday General Audience that his first encyclical would come forth on 25 January. There has been a lot of speculation about the date of publication, many saying that it would be this coming Friday. The official text of the audience address does not contain this news, but Benedict very often goes off the page and speaks extemporaneously.

(ANSA) – ROMA, 18 GEN – La prima enciclica del Papa sara’ pubblicata il 25 gennaio. Lo ha annunciato personalmente il Pontefice ai fedeli durante l’udienza generale. Benedetto XVI ritiene un ‘gesto della Provvidenza il fatto che il testo dopo i ‘ritardi’ per problemi di traduzione, possa essere pubblicato ‘proprio nel giorno in cui preghiamo per l’unita’ dei cristiani. Spero che potra’ illuminare la nostra vita cristiana’. Ha poi definito un dramma la ‘divisione’ dei cristiani ricordando pero’ i passi in avanti fatti.

The Pope’s first encyclical will be published on 25 January. The Pontiff personally announced this to the faithful during the general audience. Benedict XVI holds that it is a matter of divine Providence that the text, after “delays” on account of translation difficulties, could be published “on the very day in which we pray for the unity of Christians. I hope that will will be able to shed light upon our Christian life.” Then he called the “divison” of Christians a “drama”, at the same time, however, calling to mind the advances that have been made.

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  1. Tim Ferguson says:

    Does it seem likely that there’s any truth to the rumor that the “delays” were,
    in part, due to problems that the Secretariat of State had with the content of
    the encyclical?

  2. That would be worth digging into, wouldn’t it?

  3. In a Reuters article

    In his comments on Wednesday, the Pope suggested that his encyclical will warn that erotic love risked being degraded to mere sex or merchandise if it did not have a balancing component of spiritual or divine love founded on the Christian faith.


    “Eros, this gift of the love between a man and a woman, comes from the same source, from the goodness of creator,” he said.

    He said erotic love can be blended with and transformed into spiritual love, “where two people really love each other and one no longer seeks his or her own joy or delights but seeks above all the good of the other person.”

    The Pope told the audience he hoped his first encyclical would “illuminate and help our Christian life.”

    Vatican sources familiar with the encyclical said that in explaining his position in the encyclical, the Pope quotes not only from Biblical writings, his predecessors and Church teachings, but also from philosophers including 17th century thinker Rene Descartes.

    While the Pope is believed to have written the first part himself, the second part, dedicated to the theme of charity, was already on the burner in the final years of the pontificate of his predecessor John Paul.

    The second part, believed to have been written by experts and edited by the Pope, deals with the need for Christians to do charitable works.

    The encyclical was due to have been published on December 8 but Vatican sources said it was delayed by a series of additions, deletions and changes after observations from various Vatican departments and cardinals who had read a draft.

    Pope John Paul wrote 14 encyclicals during his nearly 27-year reign, including several so-called social encyclicals on themes such as the rights of workers and the relationship between the superpowers during the Cold War.

    Pope Benedict has said he does not expect to write as much as his predecessor did but wanted to spread John Paul’s teachings and see that they were properly understood.

  4. Tim Ferguson says:

    It does seem to confirm that there were some who had
    “difficulties” with the original text, as rumors have
    held. How I would love to be a fly on the wall in those
    offices (or perhaps a putti on the wall would be a more
    apt image…)

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