Ratzinger, Vittorio Messori: “He was a good man, he is already in Heaven”

“I interviewed him for ‘Report on Faith’, we became friends. He doesn’t need prayers”

A good man, honest, “ready to accept the position of others.” These are the qualities that Vittorio Messori, journalist, author of numerous essays on faith, starting with ‘Ipotesi su Gesù’, highlights when thinking of the figure of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, who died today in the Mater Ecclesiae Monastery in the Vatican. A man with whom “I’ve become friends” who, Messori confidently tells AdnKronos, “is already in Heaven” and who therefore “doesn’t need prayers”. A friendship, the one with Benedetto, born during the interview that the then prefect for the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith granted to the journalist and which is the basis of the essay ‘Report on the faith. Vittorio Messori in conversation with Joseph Ratzinger’. The book, released in 1985, the year in which the Synod opened for the twentieth anniversary of the end of Vatican II, achieved worldwide best-selling circulation.

“Being with him – says Messori – even on a profound level, I realized that I had never met a person so good, so available, so prepared that I have never seen otherwise. What always made me smile is that the have often presented as a man who controlled everything and was ready to silence people. In reality, I have hardly met a person like him ready to accept the position of others. I think he immediately went to Heaven, I met in him a man serious, good, respectful, generous. I won’t pray for him because he doesn’t need to, he’s already in Heaven. But I’ll be the one to pray to him because, since we were friends, I hope he wants to help me. He, as such, has no need prayers. He was immediately welcomed by Christ”.

Messori thus recounts, in more detail, the genesis of a relationship that lasted over time, until the last meeting which dates back to a few years ago. “I was a journalist and I made up my mind to interview Ratzinger who, at that time, was prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. Everyone told me it was impossible because this institution never spoke beyond written responses. The Pope Emeritus However, he had read some of my books that he liked. To my surprise and to everyone’s surprise, he accepted to be interviewed. Therefore – Messori recalls – I had the opportunity to talk to him: we met for three days alone in the mountains, there were German nuns who gave us food. For three days he answered everything I asked him which I then published in the book. It was the first time that someone who ran that institution spoke saying things that not everyone liked, the His perspective didn’t suit everyone. The book created a big mess, but they still keep quoting him. We became real friends and, when I went to Rome, we often went to a restaurant together for lunch. Every ta We used to call each other”.

The last time Messori met the Pope emeritus dates back to “about a year and a half or two years ago, he had his assistant call me to tell me that he would be happy to see me, however, asking me not to be a journalist”.