From the man who became Pope Francis: Jorge Mario Bergoglio shares his thoughts on religion, reason, and the challenges the world faces in the 21st century with Abraham Skorka, a rabbi and biophysicist.
For years Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio, archbishop of Argentina, and Rabbi Abraham Skorka were tenacious promoters of interreligious dialogues on faith and reason. They both sought to build bridges among Catholicism, Judaism, and the world at large. On Heaven and Earth, originally published in Argentina in 2010, brings together a series of these conversations, in which both men talked about various theological and worldly issues, including God, fundamentalism, atheism, abortion, homosexuality, euthanasia, same-sex marriage, and globalization. From these personal and accessible talks comes a first-hand view of the man who would become pope to 1.2 billion Catholics around the world in March 2013.
©2010 Cardenal Jorge Mario Bergoglio, Rabino Abraham Skorka, Random House Mondadori, S.A. Translation © 2013 by Image, a division of Random House, Inc. (P)2013 Random House
"This remarkable book wonderfully demonstrates the warm and positive relationship Pope Francis has developed with Jews and Judaism. These honest and respectful exchanges between then-Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio and Argentinian Rabbi Abraham Skorka on a wide range of sensitive and complex topics - God, religion, fundamentalism, politics, and the Holocaust - is a model not only for Jews and Catholics but for all those seeking productive interfaith dialogue in helping to repair a broken world." (Rabbi Eric J. Greenberg, Director, Department of Interfaith Affairs, Anti-Defamation League)
"Whether or not they agree with everything that is said, readers of all religious backgrounds will be impressed by the substance and frankness of these conversations between Cardinal Bergolio and Rabbi Skorka. They clearly enact the call of the Second Vatican Council for 'fraternal dialogues' between Catholics and Jews. This is how religious leaders should speak to one another: on the basis of sincere friendship and respect. This book will also encourage anyone who wondered if a pope from a non-European country could be personally committed to the Catholic Church's new relationship with Jews. (Philip A. Cunningham, Ph.D., Professor of Theology and Director of the Institute for Jewish-Catholic Relations, Saint Joseph's University, Philadelphia)
To really get to know the Pope, it is hopeful to read the writings of the person prior to being Pope. This book provides a good starting point to get to know how Pope Francis viewed of things as bishop of Buenos Aires. The back and forth between Abraham Skorka and Jorge Bergolio covers a range of issues.
Excellent dialog between two human beings without expressions of defensiveness or self importance. I highly recommend this book to open your mind and heart.
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