Every day, Aleteia offers a selection of articles written by the international press about the Church and the major issues that concern Catholics around the world. The opinions and views expressed in these articles are not those of the editors.
Friday 20 May 2022
1. The candidates to the presidency of the Italian Episcopal Conference
2. The friendship between a theologian pope and an atheist mathematician
3. The Church grows in North Korea despite persecution
4. In Germany, a questionnaire on the appointment of bishops leaked to press
5. How to think about the post-Christian era: the analyses of Jean-Luc Marion and Chantal Delsol
The candidates to the presidency of the Italian Episcopal Conference
The Italian Episcopal Conference will elect its president between May 23 and 27, 2022, during the general assembly scheduled in Rome. The newly elected president will succeed Cardinal Gualtiero Bassetti and will have the onerous task of addressing the issue of a historic investigation into the sexual abuse of minors in the Church in Italy. Pope Francis recently stated that he wanted the future president to be a “cardinal” and “authoritative.” Traditionally, it is the Pope who names the president of the Italian Bishops’ Conference. However, at the beginning of his pontificate, Francis asked that the bishops find their successor “themselves.” The bishops, opposed to this idea, asked the pontiff to allow them to vote and propose a “triad” of bishops from which he would choose. Cardinal Bassetti’s successor will have to decide whether or not it is time to launch a national investigation into pedophilia – a project that the ex-president put aside, explaining that “neither the injured community nor the Church would do a good service if we acted in haste, only in order to give numbers.”
Notizie Tiscali, Italian
The friendship between a theologian pope and an atheist mathematician
Piergiorgio Odifreddi is an atheist mathematician. Between 2013 and 2018, he met Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI five times and they also exchanged many letters. Today he published a collection of interviews he had with the former Cardinal Ratzinger, which he chose to title “In Cammino alla ricerca della verità” (On the way in search of the truth). This book comes out after a first open letter “Dear Pope, I am writing to you” and a second one “Dear theologian Pope, dear atheist mathematician.” It is presented as a dialogue between science and faith in which, although from divergent positions, the common goal of the search for truth emerges. Featuring firstly the narrative framework of the visits and then the letters, the book shows the reader many elements of both personalities, even if the stronger presence of Odifreddi’s pen is evident. What is surprising is the heterogeneous crowd of authors quoted: from Dostoyevsky to Hildegard, from Bingen to Küng or from Guardini to Sartre…
The Church grows in North Korea despite persecution
Archbishop Victorinus Yoon Kong-hi, one of South Korea’s most prominent clergymen, says the Catholic Church in communist North Korea is growing, although Catholics live underground and suffer persecutions. In a book of interviews, The Story of the North Korean Church, conducted last year, the 98-year-old prelate who was born in a region now located in North Korea, gives testimonies of the way the Church flourished in the territory before the division of the Korean peninsula. The Archbishop recounts the charitable missions of a very active Catholic Church before the regime, the fear of Catholics when communist forces attacked churches in 1949, the example set by the martyrs, and the story of his flight to the South. According to some information, it is possible that the structures of the seminaries from that time period still exist today.