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Handing on the Faith in an Age of Disbelief


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By Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger

Why does it seem so hard to transmit the Catholic faith today? What are the obstacles that hinder modern men, women, and children from hearing and embracing the Gospel? Are science, technology, and mass media at odds with Christianity? Are new teaching methods helping to solve the crisis in catechesis or making matters worse? How can the Church do a better job of handing on her precious patrimony to subsequent generations?

To address these provocative questions, some of the great churchmen of our times, including Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger, the man who would become Pope Benedict XVI, gathered in France in 1983 for two important conferences.

Handing on the Faith in an Age of Disbelief brings together the four illuminating lectures presented at those meetings, along with commentaries by Pierre Eyt, Bernard Bro, O.P., Georges Bonnet, and Jacques Guillet, S.J. Also included is a candid interview with the then Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger about the pressing problems associated with teaching the faith.

"The fact that there can be long-lasting periods of decline in the Church, is, unfortunately, plain enough from history. Yet history also shows that the totality of the Church—which extends through the whole world and through all times, and is held together and embodied by the Petrine office—bears within itself the powers of regeneration, so that it rises again and again from the dust to proclaim the message of salvation." —Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger, Handing on the Faith in an Age of Disbelief

Hardcover 2006