Gian Maria Vian thus responded to an editorial by Kung printed in the Italian and British press.
While Kung characterized the Pope’s move as an example of “Roman thirst for power,” Vian brushed aside the criticism as “dismal” and “unfounded.”
The director of the Vatican daily recalled how the Holy Father wished to meet with Kung — his “former colleague and friend” — just after his election to the See of Peter. Nevertheless the theologian, “infallibly reported by influential media,” has criticized the Pope many times.
Vian affirmed that Benedict XVI’s forthcoming apostolic constitution to establish personal ordinariates for Anglicans who have requested communion with the Holy See is about “reconstructing unity.”
Kung distorts it, he said, “as if it were an astute power play that must be read in a political vein, of course of the extreme right.”
Vian described Kung’s statements as “a dismal as well as unfounded representation of the Catholic Church and of Benedict XVI.”
He characterized it as the “umpteenth gratuitous attack against the Church of Rome and her indisputable ecumenical commitment.”