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Germany: Reaction to the new pope

By Gottfried Reichel

April 20, 2005

I just heard several leading German politicians comment on the selection of Mr. Joseph Ratzinger to be the new pope Benedict XVI. It was very obvious that they were proud that a German citizen, a native of Bavaria, of which Munich is the Capital, was selected to this highest office of the Roman Catholic hierarchy.
When, in 1977, he was appointed the Archbishop of Munich, he chose as his motto “Fellow workers of the truth” taken from 3 John 8. As a professor of Roman Catholic doctrine, which he became with 31 years of age, absolute truth as taught by the Roman traditions and the infallible Roman Bishop, have always played a major role in his life.
It was for this reason that John Paul II called him in the early 80ties from Munich to Rome to head the Congregation of Faith, formerly the Holy Inquisition, which is to defend the doctrines of the Holy See. Every week he spent a so-called “Four eyes conversation” with the recent Pope (Vieraugengespräch) discussing matters of doctrine. These conversations were carried on in German, which the Polish Pope spoke rather well.
While John Paul II was considered a philosopher, Joseph Ratzinger was and is considered a theologian of highest ranking on a very impressive intellectual plain. Many of his books are best-sellers.
His predecessor had an “M” in his coat of arms, proving his dedication to the Virgin Mary and her veneration unknown to the New Testament. It was visible today when Ratzinger was presented as Benedict XVI. The new pope no doubt teaches and practices this very strongly. When speaking at the former pope’s funeral last week, he mentioned that the former “Holy Father” is now with his Mother looking pleased at the crowd gathered in Rome for a mass celebrated in his behalf.
For churches of Christ it seems best to me, that the fronts are drawn clearly and the Truth of Christ as revealed in the NT should be brought to the attention of those, who follow blindly these “teachings and traditions of men” (regardless of how) impressive the masses gathered today may seem on TV. Read Christ’s warning in Matthew 15:13,14.
Gottfried Reichel is a minister in Germany. Learn more about his radio ministry at www.oldpaths.com.

Filed under: International Staff Reports

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