omelia, 30 agosto 2015
Luca Caruso

Vatican City, 30th August 2015 – “Truth, love and kindness, that belong to God, make a pure man. We can find truth, love and kindness in the Word of God, that releases us from carelessness in a world that doesn’t care about God”. This is what the Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI said this morning during the mass in the Church of the Teutonic Cemetery, in the Vatican City. There were the members of the Schülerkreis (the group of Ratzinger’s students) and of the new Schülerkreis, who joined together in the previous days in Castel Gandolfo to reflect upon the issue “How can we talk about God today?”, guided by the Czech priest and philosopher Tomás Halík.

In the homily in German, the Pope Emeritus talked about the Gospel of Mark, that was read today. Benedict XVI began underlying that three years before, in the meeting of the Schülerkreis, they had read the same Gospel and cardinal Schönborn, during the homily, had asked the question: “Don’t we need a self-purification, along with the purification from the outer world?” Benedict didn’t remember the answer the cardinal had given in that occasion, but he said the question was very interesting. And he made his reflection upon this issue. “To chose a right answer – he argued – we have to widen the question and consider the whole Gospel, not only this passage”.

Is the world menacing us? This is the meaning of the question that the Pontiff made. We have to be purified from the dangers we find in the world. “We can say that we have to answer to the many diseases and plagues with our purification”. It is important to have this kind of responsibility and to struggle against Death, the Pope said. But this is not enough, because we have also to struggle against “ the disease of the heart”. It is an inner disease, that brings corruption and other bad things. Worship and ethos - that is “self-purification” - have got a great importance. “What does a pure man do?” “Which is the real purification force?” “How do we get to the purification of our heart?” the Pope Emeritus asked. “In another passage of the Gospel – the Pope argued – God says to his followers: “You are pure thanks to the words I said”. We become pure thanks to the Word of God. “Truth, love and kindness that belong to god make a pure man. We can find truth, love and kindness in the Word of God, that releases us from ‘carelessness’ in a world that doesn’t care about God”. “The Word of God has a deeper value than the simple words, because it is through the words that we can find the Word of God and God himself. We can find the Word of God in those who reflect God, show us His face and His openness, kindness, sincerity”. “We hope that God will give us the purification of the heart . It is because of the Truth that comes from Him: this is the purification force”.

During the Prayer of the Faithful all people asked God to take care of Pope Francis during Holy Year of Mercy.

inaugurazione, 30 agosto 2015

At the end of the Mass, beside the Teutonic Cemetery, there was the inauguration of the Room dedicated to Pope Benedict – Joseph Ratzinger and the Pope Emeritus blessed the room. In his intervention, Msgr. Hans Peter Fischer, rector of the Teutonic College, announced that on 18th November there will be the opening of the library dedicated to Joseph Ratzinger, to his life and thought as a scholar and a Pontiff, next to the library of the Teutonic College of the Roman Institute of the Society of Görres, in the Vatican City. A lesson will be held by the Cardinal Gianfranco Ravasi, President of the Pontifical Council of Culture: “From the Bible to the Library – Benedict XVI and the Culture of the Word of God.”

The library – an initiative of the Joseph Ratzinger-Benedict XVI Vatican Foundation - has got about a thousand of books in various languages and it is open to those who are interested in the publications by Joseph Ratzinger, in his life and theology. A lot of books have been donated from Benedict XVI himself, others from the Vatican Foundation.

The Library will be available from Monday to Wednesday, from 15,30 to 19,30 p.m. “The Ratzinger Foundation – Msgr. Fischer said – has given some scholars the charge to manage the Library”.

Participants in the celebration were: the cardinals Schönborn, archbishop of Wien, and Kurt Koch, president of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, the archbishop Georg Gänswein, Prefect of the Pontifical Household and Benedict's personal secretary, the bishop Barthélemy Adoukonou, secretary of the Pontifical Council for Culture, the auxiliary bishop of Hamburg Hans-Jochen Jaschke, the abbot Maximilian Heim, who received the Ratzinger Prize in 2011, Msgr. Stephan Heid, director of the Roman Institute of the Society of Görres, Msgr. Giuseppe Antonio Scotti, president of the Joseph Ratzinger- Benedict XVI Vatican Foundation, father Stephan Otto Horn, president of the Schülerkreis, Christian Schaller, who received the Ratzinger Prize in 2013.