An Interview with Dominican Cardinal Georges Cottier

July 16, 2012

The Theologian Emeritus of the Papal Household, Dominican Cardinal Georges Cottier, O.P., spoke in a recent interview about Blessed Pope John Paul II, with whom he worked intimately: “…he was a man of hope. When he said: ‘Do not be afraid,’ he certainly said it for the countries occupied by Communism, but he also said it because he saw that there was a certain decadence in the West. I would say he awakened the Church everywhere. Then, his love of life, this was fantastic and he witnessed this love of life in a life profoundly marked by illness, and young people understood him.” Cardinal Cottier, a native of Switzerland, was the Theologian of the Papal Household from 1989-2005, under Pope John Paul II.  Dominicans have traditionally served the Holy Father and the Roman Curia in this capacity since the thirteenth century. Cardinal Cottier spoke of the special responsibilities entrusted to the Theologian of the Papal Household: “I had to revise all the texts spoken or signed by the Pope, given that — with so many employed — unity of thought, legitimacy and also clarity had to be seen, and this was practically my daily work. I identify my great joys with the Pope’s great acts. For example, two years after my arrival, I had to read the Catechism of the Catholic Church and I read it, I remember, with great joy and I was able to make my observations calmly. And then there are the encyclicals, which were very interesting for me, as some of them were entrusted to the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. There, as consultor, I had the opportunity to take part in working groups, and I was able to see and discover the genius of Cardinal Ratzinger, present Pope, who had a gift to lead the working groups, to stress the line, to listen, so everything was wonderful. Another experience which really impressed me was the preparation of the Holy Year.” The Polish Dominican Father Wojciech Giertych, O.P. currently serves as the Theologian of the Papal Household since 2005.  Kindly Light Media, has a new documentary featuring Father Giertych. Watch the video trailer below and order it here.  [vimeo 42996022 w=500 h=281]

More News & Events