Vatican City, 7th October 2022 – Next December 1st, Pope Francis will deliver Ratzinger Prize 2022 to Professor P. Michel Fédou and Professor Joseph Halevi Horowitz Weiler at the Clementine Hall of the Apostolic Palace.
Michel Fédou. Born in Lyon, France, in 1952. He is a Jesuit and he has been teaching Dogmatic Theology and Patristics at the Centre Sèvres of Paris since 1987; he has been dean of the Theological Faculty and then president of the same Centre. He is a member of several theological organizations and commissions regarding ecumenical dialogue with Lutherans and Orthodox Christians. He is the author of several works, mainly about Patristics and Christology.
Joseph H. H. Weiler. Born in 1951, he is professor of Law in a lot of universities and Institutes of legal studies in the United States (New York, Harvard) but also in Great Britain and in many other places in the world. He was the president of the European University Institute of Florence. He is the author of many works about constitutional, international and European law and about human rights. He is a Jewish and he became popular because he represented Italy at the Court of Justice in the case of the display of the crucified Christ in schools. He received an honorary degree from the Catholic University of America.
Ratzinger Prize is the most important initiative of the Joseph Ratzinger-Benedict XVI Vatican Foundation. It is assigned – according to what is recommended by the Statutes – to “scholars that stood out for their publications and/or scientific research”. Recently, the Prize has also been given to people who dealt with arts related to Christianity.
Candidates to the Prize are proposed to the Pope by the Scientific Committee of the Foundation, made up of 5 members, nominated by the Pope. Until recently, it has been made up of Cardinals Angelo Amato (Prefect Emeritus of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints), Kurt Koch (President of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity), Luis Ladaria (Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith), Gianfranco Ravasi (President of the Pontifical Council for Culture), His Excellency Rudolf Voderholzer (Bishop of Regensburg and President of Pope Benedict XVI Institute). His Excellency Archbishop Salvatore Fisichella (until now President of the Pontifical Council for Promoting the New Evangelization) stood in for Cardinal Amato.
Ratzinger Prize has been appointed every year since 2011 to two or three scholars. Including 2022 edition, 26 scholars have been awarded with this Prize.
The awarded people are mainly scholars of Dogmatic or Fundamental Theology, Scripture, Patrology, Philosophy, musicians and architects coming from 16 different countries: Germany (7), France (4), Italy (2), Australia, Brazil, Burkina Faso, Canada, Estonia, Greece, England, Lebanon, Poland, Spain, United States, South Africa, Switzerland. They are not only Catholic, but they belong to other Christian confessions of faith: an Anglican, a Lutheran, two Orthodox, and now one Jewish.
OTHER ACTIVITIES OF THE FOUNDATION
International Study Conferences
The 10th International Symposium promoted by the Foundation will be held on 20th-21st October 2022.
Topic: Ecclesiology of Joseph Ratzinger.
Venue: Franciscan University Steubenville (USA).
In 2020 and 2021 International Symposiums weren’t held due to the pandemic. 2019 edition of the Symposium was held in Budapest.
Prize “Razón abierta”, in partnership with Francisco de Vitoria University in Madrid. The 6th edition of the Prize will be held in 2023.
Prize “Ratio et spes”, in partnership with Nicolaus Copernicus University in Toruń (Poland). The 4th edition of the Prize will be held in 2023.
Both Prizes aim at fostering the dialogue among different scientific disciplines and philosophy and theology.