Letters From a Young Catholic

My reflections as a Catholic young adult passionate about the Faith, seeking to grow in knowledge and understanding of God and discerning the will of the Lord in my life.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Deus Caritas Est - A Smart Strategy

From an article called Benedict Contra Nietzche: A reflection on Deus Caritas Est
by Benjamin D. Wiker

"When Pope Benedict XVI's first encyclical came out, the media were a bit
confused. They, along with eager conservatives, were expecting the new pope
to line up the ecclesiastical howitzers and mow down dissenters in crisp,
staccato prose.

Instead, they got Deus Caritas Est, "God Is Love." Had the pope gone soft?
Even daft? Too old to fight? What gives?

Given the press deadlines, the demand for immediate comment left all too
many journalists just time enough to concoct a newsy-cutesy headline, tear a
few soundbite-sized morsels out of the text (and out of context) during
lunch, and quick-cook an article for immediate release.

Judged by the results, it was hard to get an angle on an encyclical that
appeared to have no edges, a mere round and happy affirmation of love. Even
worse, it seemed to some on the left that he¹d actually joined their side.
Liberal Bishop Francis Deniau, the prelate of Nevers in eastern France, soon
piped to the press that Benedict¹s affirmation of sexual love might just be
a surprise papal wink to nudge a reversal of the Church¹s ban on

Well, they didn¹t call him the "Panzer-Kardinal" for nothing. Deus Caritas
Est is a declaration of war, and it is loaded with ammunition much of it
stealth in design, and of such power that the Church under Benedict XVI will
certainly be the Church Militant. For while on the surface Benedict only
seems to be offering a theological platitude, that "God is love," hidden to
the hasty eyes of the press, buried in the intricacies of his philosophical
and theological analysis, obscured from all but those initiated into
Benedict's inner circle, he really is declaring that God is love.

It will become clear as we dig into the encyclical that a more dangerous and
constructive idea for our culture could not be imagined. It's a brilliant
strategy on Benedict's part to hide so explosive a truth under a simple

See the rest of the article here.