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Salt of the Earth: The Church at the End of the Millennium- An Interview With Peter Seewald Paperback – October 1, 1997
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"An absolutely fascinating book, like a personal visit with the Cardinal." -- Fr. Benedict Groeschel, CFR
"One of the most arresting, enjoyable books I've read in years." -- -Archbishop Charles Chaput
"This is Cardinal Ratzinger at his free-wheeling best... His candor is breathtaking." ---Cardinal John O'Connor
Text: English (translation)
Original Language: German
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This is the first opportunity, of a total of three, that Peter Seewald has had to do this. By now, I have listened to all of the interviews. The second interview is: Light of the World: The Pope, The Church and the Signs Of The Times, and God and the World: A Conversation With Peter Seewald being the third. I was very impressed by these. I was interested initially and primarily in this because of the questions that are asked (the topics are listed above in the Product Description). They are probably ones that we all would like answers for. I was very curious. I wanted to hear how Pope Benedict would answer them.
What makes it more interesting, Seewald does not supply the questions ahead of time. He asks. The pope responds. This gives us the chance to hear the Holy Father speak his mind unrehearsed. That's also the way the Pope wants it. It is here that we understand his grasp of the Church and its teachings, mission and history, as well as its problems, shortcomings, difficulties and failures. He hides from nothing. In fact, it is surprising how frank he is in his responses. It is almost as if he sympathizes with Seewald's looking for answers. He gives the Church a certain humanness that is very attractive, something that many are looking for at the parish level.
One of the strongest impressions that he has left in my mind as Pope is that he describes his role, not as you might expect--the world leader of a billion Catholics--but as someone who is to bear witness to Christ. This is exactly what he does in this interview, and does so well. He does not pontificate. Pope Benedict is certainly not a light-weight. His wisdom and understanding of matters is such that he can break things down to people at all levels, including children. I was there witnessing this at World Youth Day in Cologne.
I first read this as an audiobook, which I think added to the satisfaction of it. It's not the Pope's voice, but you can imagine! As is the case with many books that I really like, I go back and buy either the hardcover or paperback edition. Doing that with a book like this allows me to dive into the text to draw whatever more I can from something like this interview I have listened to.
A great contribution to the Church and to people of all faiths. I believe that this can help greatly in clearing up many misunderstandings people may have.
A great read! A page-turner!
That probably does not need to be said, does it? What is more important than being brilliant is that the "then" Cardinal Ratzinger, is seen as one who can and does communicate with the people. We are those people! Anyone can understand what Cardinal Ratzinger means when he answers Peter Seewald's questions - one would never go away saying, "What did He mean by THAT!" Brilliant!
Peter Seewald asks great questions - for a starter, "Do you pray when you and the Pope (then Pope John Paul II) meet?" "What do you wear?" Silly? Maybe, but we learn about the setting of the meeting of the Pope and the Prefect - we see the picture - we ARE there with them! You seem to take a chair here with Seewald and the "then" Cardinal Ratzinger, now Holy Father - who is also fondly called the German Shepherd and/or B16. You can take him anywhere! Later Peter Seewald's questions become deeper and more profound, but never more profound that the answers.
I swooned over the first 20 pages. I began putting green stars to mark things that were amazing - then green exclamation points to help me locate great comments - then began to underline - now I have a book that is almost totally green in ink! What a heart for God this Cardinal had in 1996 and to think that 10 years later he was our new Pope. Get out your markers!
Purchase this book and, at the same time, order God and the World: A Conversation With Peter Seewald - the next book dated 2000. At least, put these books on your Wish List for Mothers' Day or Fathers' Day. Actually begin by adding everything Pope Benedict XVI has ever written to your library.
I believe Mr. Seewald went "Home" to the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church shortly after this book. They were a great team!