A Latin Lover in the Vatican

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Pope Benedict XVI’s complex critique of the global economic system in his latest encyclical Caritas in Veritate (Charity in Truth), released a couple of weeks ago, is described in Saturday’s New York Times as “remarkable but poorly written.” This is surprising, comments the Times’s religion writer Peter Steinfels, because the German-born pope has “often shown himself [to be] a graceful writer.” Criticism of the document’s style — called “a tough read,” and “molasses-like” — are based on the English version and beg two questions. First, given the enormous amount of expert input required, how much is in the pope’s hand? […]


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