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The Pope's War: Why Ratzinger's Secret Crusade Has Imperiled the Church and How It Can Be Saved Paperback – October 2, 2012


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Editorial Reviews

Review

“Indeed this book, published two years before Benedict XVI resigned, goes a long way toward a detailed list of reasons for Benedict's failed papacy.” —Midwest Book Review

About the Author

After being forbidden to teach theology by then-Cardinal Ratzinger in 1988, Matthew Fox was welcomed into the Anglican community, where he started the University of Creation Spirituality. He is now a visiting scholar, and operates a successful program for the education of inner-city teenagers. Matthew Fox lives in Oakland, CA.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Sterling Ethos; Reprint edition (October 2, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1454900016
  • ISBN-13: 978-1454900016
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6.4 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (71 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #608,509 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

212 of 253 people found the following review helpful By Golden mountain guy on May 1, 2011
Format: Hardcover
Matthew Fox is a current Episcopal priest and former Dominican Friar and theologian who was silenced by Cardinal Ratzinger in 1988 as a result of his famous book "Original Blessing". He is the author of over 25 books, and in this latest book " The Pope's War" he pulls back the veil of secrecy surrounding the inner workings of the Vatican and papal hierarchy. This is particularly important at the time of the unfolding of the church pedophilia scandal, but sees beyond the scandal to a systematic cover-up engineered by the Congregation of Doctrine of the Faith (successor of the Inquisition) that was headed by then Cardinal Ratzinger, now Pope Benedict. As a non-Catholic, I found it very educational and disturbing to learn how the mechanisms of the Roman Church work.
Fox describes several apparently "lay" organizations, Opus Dei, Legion of Christ, and Communion and Liberation, who represent papal cults within the Catholic Church, and their charismatic founders who have their own histories of pedophilia and abuse. It's quite a disturbing story.
It's a strength of the book that Fr. Fox doesn't simply criticize the Pope, but expends a great deal of effort in telling stories of contemporary Catholic saints and martyrs who have lost lives and reputations speaking up for justice for the poor and oppressed, particularly in Latin America. At the end of the book is a "Wall" devoted to the names of silenced Catholic clergy. Fox also outlines a theology that he hopes will bring the Holy Roman Church back to it's Christian roots of the blessing of being Human, the value of all persons, standing up for Justice for the powerless and Joyful worship of the Creator.
I recommend this book particularly to Catholics, as you have a responsibility to be informed, but also to all spiritually minded persons because both the tales of power and abuse, as well as stories of self-less sacrifice by contemporary martyrs resonate in all religious traditions.
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214 of 257 people found the following review helpful By Theodore Richards on May 2, 2011
Format: Hardcover
The news, here in Chicago, of Father Michael Pfleger's suspension by Cardinal Francis George, while perhaps surprising to some given his immense popularity, was, for me, almost expected. It comes as a part of a pattern of behavior from the Vatican that goes back to the previous Papacy, a sort of counter-reformation in the wake of the liberalization of the Second Vatican Council. You see, Pfleger's suspension is neither merely an internal matter of the Catholic Church nor does it have anything to do with the specific conflict between Pfleger and his Cardinal. It is telling that the Cardinal headed off to Rome immediately after the suspension rather than going to the people. To understand this event, one must look into the recent history of the Catholic Church and the man who has become the primary ideological force not merely during his own Papacy, but throughout the previous one--Joseph Ratzinger, known now as Pope Benedict XVI.

It is fitting that this news comes with the beatification--rushed through by Ratzinger--of Pope John Paul II this weekend. Whereas a freedom-fighter like Oscar Romero--killed by death squads for standing up for the poor--was condemned by this Pope and John Paul II, the man whose enduring legacy will be the crushing of Liberation Theology will become a saint. What other fate could Pfleger have expected in such a Church?

Matthew Fox is no journalist, nor is he an unbiased observer of the Vatican. Fox is one of the 92 people he lists in the appendix to his book, The Pope's War: Why Ratzinger's Crusade Has Imperiled the Church and How it Can Be Saved (New York, Sterling Ethos), whom Ratzinger has silenced or expelled.
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39 of 45 people found the following review helpful By Thomas Patrick Doyle on August 26, 2011
Format: Hardcover
Few would argue that there is something seriously wrong with the institutional Catholic Church. The so-called conservative restorationists point to Vatican II as the primary cause of all problems. Their goal is to return the institution to what it was like prior to Vatican II, which means moving backward by half a century. The world-wide sex abuse scandals, financial scandals and heavy-handed oppression of thinking theologians, priests and bishops paint a different picture of the Church and what is wrong with it. Retreating to the former age when the institution and the body of believers were identified as one in the same doesn't seem to be a realistic or even sane answer. Matt Fox, who has been in the forefront of theology, spirituality and Christian community for almost half a century has written a fascinating and "right-on-target" book that fearlessly goes where many fear to tread....right to the heart of the matter. He carefully and accurately documents the campaign of Josef Ratzinger, now Benedict XVI, to re-shape the global church into how he believes it should act, think and look. This is not an angry harangue or an emotional diatribe made up of assertions and accusations that lack foundation. Matt Fox provides detailed stories of the key campaigns by Ratzinger to shut down anyone or anything that does not fit into his vision of Church. Equally essential to understanding the state of the Church today is understanding the nature and mission of the key allies in the march back to the mythological golden age of the monarchical church. Matt takes a critical and shocking look at the Opus Dei, Legion of Christ and Communion and Liberation, comparing their cult-like, oppressive modus operandi to basic Christianity.Read more ›
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