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savafan
07-13-2005, 02:02 AM
http://www.lifesite.net/ldn/2005/jul/05071301.html

RIMSTING, Germany, July 13, 2005 (LifeSiteNews.com) - LifeSiteNews.com has obtained and made available online copies of two letters sent by Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, who was recently elected Pope, to a German critic of the Harry Potter novels. In March 2003, a month after the English press throughout the world falsely proclaimed that Pope John Paul II approved of Harry Potter, the man who was to become his successor sent a letter to a Gabriele Kuby outlining his agreement with her opposition to J.K. Rowling's offerings. (See below for links to scanned copies of the letters signed by Cardinal Ratzinger.)

As the sixth issue of Rowling's Harry Potter series - Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince - is about to be released, the news that Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger expressed serious reservations about the novels is now finally being revealed to the English-speaking world still under the impression the Vatican approves the Potter novels.

In a letter dated March 7, 2003 Cardinal Ratzinger thanked Kuby for her "instructive" book Harry Potter - gut oder böse (Harry Potter- good or evil?), in which Kuby says the Potter books corrupt the hearts of the young, preventing them from developing a properly ordered sense of good and evil, thus harming their relationship with God while that relationship is still in its infancy.

"It is good, that you enlighten people about Harry Potter, because those are subtle seductions, which act unnoticed and by this deeply distort Christianity in the soul, before it can grow properly," wrote Cardinal Ratzinger.

The letter also encouraged Kuby to send her book on Potter to the Vatican prelate who quipped about Potter during a press briefing which led to the false press about the Vatican support of Potter. At a Vatican press conference to present a study document on the New Age in April 2003, one of the presenters - Fr. Peter Fleedwood - made a positive comment on the Harry Potter books in response to a question from a reporter. Headlines such as "Pope Approves Potter" (Toronto Star), "Pope Sticks Up for Potter Books" (BBC), "Harry Potter Is Ok With The Pontiff" (Chicago Sun Times) and "Vatican: Harry Potter's OK with us" (CNN Asia) littered the mainstream media.

In a second letter sent to Kuby on May 27, 2003, Cardinal Ratzinger "gladly" gave his permission to Kuby to make public "my judgement about Harry Potter."

The most prominent Potter critic in North America, Catholic novelist and painter Michael O'Brien commented to LifeSiteNews.com on the "judgement" of now-Pope Benedict saying, "This discernment on the part of Benedict XVI reveals the Holy Father's depth and wide ranging gifts of spiritual discernment." O'Brien, author of a book dealing with fantasy literature for children added, "it is consistent with many of the statements he's been making since his election to the Chair of Peter, indeed for the past 20 years - a probing accurate read of the massing spiritual warfare that is moving to a new level of struggle in western civilization. He is a man in whom a prodigious intellect is integrated with great spiritual gifts. He is the father of the universal church and we would do well to listen to him."


English translations of the two letters by Cardinal Ratzinger follow:

Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger
Vatican City
March 7, 2003


Esteemed and dear Ms. Kuby!

Many thanks for your kind letter of February 20th and the informative book which you sent me in the same mail. It is good, that you enlighten people about Harry Potter, because those are subtle seductions, which act unnoticed and by this deeply distort Christianity in the soul, before it can grow properly.

I would like to suggest that you write to Mr. Peter Fleedwood, (Pontifical Council of Culture, Piazza S. Calisto 16, I00153 Rome) directly and to send him your book.

Sincere Greetings and Blessings,

+ Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger


=======================

Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger
Vatican City
May 27, 2003

Esteemed and dear Ms. Kuby,


Somehow your letter got buried in the large pile of name-day , birthday and Easter mail. Finally this pile is taken care of, so that I can gladly allow you to refer to my judgment about Harry Potter.


Sincere Greetings and Blessings,

+ Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger


Links to the scanned copies of the two signed letters by Cardinal Ratzinger (in German) - In PDF format:
http://www.lifesite.net/ldn/2005_docs/ratzingerletter.pdf
http://www.lifesite.net/ldn/2005_docs/ratzingerpermission.pdf

jhw

Crash Davis
07-13-2005, 09:26 AM
Please refrain from infringing on the Church's monopoly of myths.

Johnny Footstool
07-13-2005, 09:30 AM
My own sense of good and evil was corrupted as a child by watching "He-Man and the Masters of the Universe."

Reds/Flyers Fan
07-13-2005, 10:01 AM
I wonder if Cardinal Ratzinger ever actually read the books. I'm an adult Catholic who has read each book and seen each movie and I see absolutely no problem with them.

TeamCasey
07-13-2005, 10:10 AM
Ken and Barbie used to do the nasty in the corvette.

The dream house got trashed after a wild party with Skipper and that army fellow.

CrackerJack
07-13-2005, 10:23 AM
Watching Jerry put Tom's head into a vice or driving a nail through his tail and slaughtering him with a lawn care instrument corrupted my sense of good and evil a long, long time ago.

Now I think all mice are evil minions and cats are just defending themselves from what should be a good meal.

I haven't been able to go to church since.

M2
07-13-2005, 10:27 AM
What do you expect? This pope's got so many sticks up his bum his robes now bear a "Home Depot" banner. The man's a veritable lumber yard.

Unassisted
07-13-2005, 10:34 AM
Prominent American evangelicals have been banging this drum for years. It's not surprising that a pope who decries secularization in Europe would be opposed to wildly popular children's novels in which good is pitted against evil and the "good" people are associated with occult forces.

I'm just glad more kids are reading because of these books.

savafan
07-13-2005, 10:41 AM
Prominent American evangelicals have been banging this drum for years. It's not surprising that a pope who decries secularization in Europe would be opposed to wildly popular children's novels in which good is pitted against evil and the "good" people are associated with occult forces.

I'm just glad more kids are reading because of these books.

I avoided the books for a long time because my church I used to attend told me that I should. Finally I said screw it and am really enjoying them.

I agree with your statement about being happy that kids are reading these books.

TeamBoone
07-13-2005, 12:27 PM
For Pete's sake! It's fiction and is listed in the Library of Congress, and most book stores, under the "Fantasy" category. I would hope that parents teach their children the difference between truth and fiction (at least when it's as clear cut as the Harry Potter books are).

And you guys are right; there's a whole lot of violence in traditional children's tales (and in the world at large). Should children be shielded from the classics and the evening news? Hmmm, I guess that's debatable but so is allowing one's children to read the Harry Potter books. If they don't want them to, then they have the perrogative to not buy them and/or take the book(s) out of their hands, just as they have the choice to not buy toy guns and to supervise television viewing.

Ugh! This stuff makes me crazy.

alex trevino
07-13-2005, 10:11 PM
wonder how Harry Potter feels about the Pope?

Caveat Emperor
07-14-2005, 10:40 AM
wonder how Harry Potter feels about the Pope?

I assume he'd call him an "Annoying muggle git" or something suitably British like that.

I love the Harry Potter books. I wish they'd have been coming out when I was growing up, becaue I think it'd be tremendously fun to be doing the whole "Get dressed up and go buy a book a midnight" thing.

As it is, I'll be taking my sister to go get a copy at midnight this weekend as part of a tradition. I've taken her to get the last 3 at midnight (tracing back to when she wasn't old enough to drive herself), so I figure we may as well make it 4-4.

Dom Heffner
07-14-2005, 10:47 AM
I would be more interested in hearing his plan to stop pedophilia within his own church.