Thought of Pope Benedict XVI: An Introduction to the Theology of Joseph Ratzinger
by Fr. Aidan Nichols. Burns & Oates (June, 2005)
Aidan Nichols' timely book is the first full-scale investigation of Joseph Ratzinger's theology in its development from the 1950s to the present day.
It presents a chronological account of the development of Ratzinger's writing which reflects a wide range of historical and theoretical interests such as: Augustine's ecclesiology; early Franciscanism and the idea of salvation history; Christian brotherhood; the unfolding of the Second Vatican Council; commenting on the Apostles' Creed; explorations of the concept of the Church; preaching, liturgy and Church music; eschatology; the foundations of dogmatic and moral theology; the Church and politics; ecumenism, and the problem of pluralism. This book is a comprehensive introduction to a figure who is in his own right, quite apart from his significance in the politics of the Church, a major German Catholic theologian of the twentieth century.
This new edition provides an amplification of the existing chapters by reference to books and articles produced by Joseph Ratzinger between 1986/1987 and his election as Pope in 2005. This is especially important in the area of the Liturgy, where his 1999 study 'The Spirit of the Liturgy' takes further his critique of contemporary Western Catholic worship and his call for a new liturgical movement which would aim to 'reform the Reform'.
Nichols also includes two wholly new chapters devoted to (a) Ratzinger's writings on Judaism, Islam and other religions, as well as (b) secularization and the future of Europe.