.- The former director of the Holy Seeâs Press Office, Joaquin Navarro-Valls, said he was not surprised by the success of Pope Benedict XVIâs book, âJesus of Nazareth,â and said, âIn my opinion, the center, the principal focal point of this pontificate is what I would call the ministry of the intellect.
At a time in which there is great confusion in all levels of conception, the Pope is carrying out a stupendous ministry to the intellect, with extraordinary conceptual richness, and people are very sensitive to this. They have understood the value of the word the Pope is offering to all humanity,â Navarro-Valls said during an interview with Vatican Radio.
For Navarro Valls, âthe book is part of this ministry to the intellect. Obviously there are very beautiful pages, of even an aesthetic nature; but it is conceptually very rich. How can I explain it? For Catholics itâs not enough to accept the divinity of Jesus; itâs also necessary to reflect on the meaning of the historical Jesus,â he said.
âAn effort to clarify, to rationalizeâa word often repeated by the Pope in this bookâis needed,â Navarro Valls continued. âThere is rationality of the faith in this pontificate, which was implicit in some way in the enormous body of work of Cardinal Ratzinger and is naturally confirmed in his pontificate.
âThis kind of message is very current. Itâs like an enormous catechesis but at a higher level that the people understand, that they follow, that the people feel they have understood. Returning to the book, many pages confirm what we are saying. I think it is precisely this that the people appreciate,â he said.
âTo be honest, I must say I am not the least bit surprised at the initial success of this book, which will surely be a success in the long run,â the former Vatican spokesman said.