Ratzinger Foundation

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Ratzinger Foundation
Founded 21 December 2007
Type Charitable organization
Key people
President Giuseppe Antonio Scotti,
Cardinal Camillo Ruini, Head of the Scientific Committee,
Father Federico Lombardi, S.J., Chairman of the Board of Directors,
Cardinal Christoph Schönborn[1]
£1.6 million

Papst Benedikt XVI.-Stiftung (German),

The Ratzinger Vatican Foundation

The Ratzinger Foundation, also known as The Pope Benedict XVI Foundation, is a charitable organization whose aim is "the promotion of theology in the spirit of Joseph Ratzinger." which it achieves by funding scholarships and bursaries for poorer students across the world.[2][3] The foundation was launched on the initiative of former students (including 16 professors) of Joseph Ratzinger in December 2007.

The foundation makes much of its money from the selling of Pope Benedict XVI's writings. In 2007, £1.6 million was raised for the charity by the selling of Pope Benedict's biography on Christ, Jesus of Nazareth.[2]

The charity also receives private donations and has close links with the Ratzinger Circle of Alumni (Ratzinger Schülerkreis), a group of theology students who, at doctoral and post-doctoral level, studied under the tutorship of then Professor Ratzinger. The Circle was formed after Ratzinger was elevated to the position of Archbishop of Munich.[3]

The Ratzinger Prize[edit]

At the 2010 meeting, it was announced that Pope Benedict XVI had decided to donate a sizable sum of money for the establishment of a sort of 'Nobel Prize in Theology' (as Camillo Ruini called it) in recognition of those who perform promising scholarly research relating to or expounding upon his work; it was named the Ratzinger Prize, and each winner will receive a check for $87,000. The Prize is awarded in three areas: Sacred Scripture study, patristics and fundamental theology.

On Thursday, 30 June 2011 Benedict XVI presented the three inaugural prizes to the winners in a ceremony at the papal residence, the Apostolic Palace, in the Vatican:

On Saturday, 28 September 2012, it was announced that the 2012 winners of the Ratzinger Prize were:

  • Reverend Professor Brian E. Daley, S.J., an American Jesuit who is Catherine F. Huisking Professor of Theology at the University of Notre Dame in Notre Dame, Indiana. He is a graduate of Fordham University and a Rhodes Scholar who entered the Society of Jesus in 1964 and was ordained to the presbyterate in 1970. He currently serves as executive secretary of the Catholic-Orthodox Consultation for North America.
  • Professor Rémi Brague, a French professor emeritus of medieval Arabic Philosophy at the Sorbonne in Paris, and is professor of philosophy or religion at the Ludwig- Maximilian University in Munich. He is married and has four children.

On Friday, 21 June 2013, the 2013 winners were announced:

The laureates in 2014 were:

The laureates in 2015 were:[6]

The laureates in 2016 were:

The laureates in 2017 were:[8]

Also, in 2017, the first edition of the "Ragione Aperta" (Open Reason) Prizes, for research (Darcia Narvaez; and Claudia Vanney and Juan Franck), and for teaching (Michael Schuck, Nancy Tuchman, and Michael Garanzini; and Sarolta Laura Baritz), were presented by the Foundation.