Wednesday, July 13, 2005

The Pope on Harry Potter

For more than two years now, it has been widely assumed that the Vatican had put its stamp of approval on J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter series. However, reports today that it has evidence that disputes that claim in the form of two letters from 2003 sent by Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, now Pope Benedict XVI, to German author Gabriele Kuby. reports: . . .

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. goes on to quote Potter critic and Catholic novelist and painter Michael O'Brien: "This discernment on the part of Benedict XVI reveals the Holy Father's depth and wide ranging gifts of spiritual discernment. . . . 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."

Hat tip to Matt Drudge.


At Friday, July 15, 2005 3:24:00 PM, Anonymous Alex Samuels said...

I have not read the Harry Potter books because there are, just simply, other books I had rather read. I have seen a couple of the movies. So my comments are based on the Harry Potter movies not the books.

The movies I saw were entertaining and often funny fantasies. The problem I have with the movies is that they paint a very alluring picture of witchcraft for the minds of young children. The imagination has a powerful influence on the minds and lives of human beings. There are many children, because of developmental delays, that have difficulty telling the difference between reality and fantasy until their early teens. The allure of magical powers that are available to any boy and girl who learns how to use them has been present in one form or another throughout history. Even adults succumb to this temptation through Wicca and other cults. The Bible teaches Christians not to have anything to do with witchcraft. The normal or average Christian adult will, like me, probably never read the books, but may see the movies. This person will recognize the stories as nothing but pure fantasy. Don’t be so sure, however, that your children will understand the difference of what is possible and what is not. The temptation for special powers has a habit of lingering a long time in some people’s lives. If you don’t believe this, I invite you to look up the satanic/witchcraft sites on your internet.


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