With Pope Benedict no longer living, it is unclear what role Archbishop Gänswein will have going forward in the Vatican, if any.
Jonathan Liedl/CNAVaticanJanuary 9, 2023
Archbishop Georg Gänswein, the longtime personal secretary of the late Pope Benedict XVI, met with Pope Francis this morning, according to the Vatican’s daily press briefing.
The German prelate’s meeting with the Holy Father comes only four days after Benedict XVI was laid to rest in the crypt of St. Peter’s Basilica on Thursday, Jan. 5.
It also took place shortly before the public release of Archbishop Gänswein’s forthcoming book detailing his nearly 20 years of service to Benedict XVI. According to a preview of the text published by Reuters, the book includes details about the German pope’s alleged disagreements with his Argentinian successor over matters such as Pope Francis’ restriction of the traditional Latin Mass and his statements regarding moral matters such as abortion and homosexuality.
Titled Nothing But The Truth — My Life Beside Benedict XVI, Archbishop Gänswein’s 330-page book will be released in Italian on Jan. 12. Vatican spokesman Matteo Bruni has provided no comment on the book, which was written with Italian journalist Saverio Gaeta.
Another episode reportedly discussed in the book is Archbishop Gänswein’s effective dismissal from the role of prefect of the Papal Household, which occurred in 2020. Originally appointed to the position by Pope Benedict XVI in 2012, Archbishop Gänswein continued to serve as prefect during Pope Francis’ pontificate, a role that includes organizing official audiences with the Holy Father.
However, Archbishop Gänswein ceased performing the duties associated with the position following a controversy in January 2020 surrounding a book on priestly celibacy originally published as co-authored by Pope Benedict XVI and Guinean Cardinal Robert Sarah. The book, From the Depths of Our Heart, was published amid the controversial pan-Amazonian synod and was seen by many as a critique from the former pontiff of Pope Francis’ allowance for questions of married clergy to be discussed during the proceedings.
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