Benedict Among The Czechs

Are you following the Pope's trip to the Czech Republic? Great documents on freedom --see his press conference en route.

Question: Here we are 20 years after the fall of the communist regimes of eastern Europe; John Paul II, visiting different countries that had survived communism, encouraged them to the freedom that they had regained responsibly. What is your message for the peoples of Eastern Europe today in this new historical phase?

Benedict XVI: As I said, these countries really suffered under dictatorships, but in the suffering, concepts of freedom developed that are current and that must now be further elaborated and realized. I have in mind, for example, a text of Vaclav Havel that says: “Dictatorships are based on lies and if the lie is overcome, if no one lies any more and if the truth comes to light, there will also be freedom.” And this was how he explained the connection between truth and freedom, where freedom is not libertinism, arbitrariness, but is connected to and conditioned by the great values of truth and love and solidarity and the good in general. Thus, I think that these concepts, these ideas that matured under the dictatorship, must not be lost: Now we must return to them!

And, in the freedom that is often a little empty and without values, again recognize that freedom and values, freedom and good, freedom and truth go together: Otherwise freedom too is destroyed. This seems to me to be the message that comes from these countries and that must be realized in this moment.

More on creative minorities, too --where it's clear he's not calling for the Church to be a minority, it's calling for it to be creative, without worrying much about size.

Here's the homily from yesterday, and I hope to be able to do a Potpourri this week.