Cardinal calls Benedict XVI’s secretary’s book ‘unseemly’

ROME (AP) – The Archbishop of Vienna, a longtime friend and former student of Pope Benedict XVI, confirmed that he was the one who wrote a letter to his former teacher urging him to accept election as pontiff in 2005 if the votes went in its direction.

Cardinal Christoph Schoenborn released a statement on Wednesday confirming a revelation in a new book by Benedict’s personal secretary, Archbishop Georg Gaenswein, which was published shortly after Benedict’s death on December 31 at the age of 95.

The book, “Nothing but the Truth: My Life Next to Pope Benedict XVI,” has already sparked controversy as it revealed confidential communications and exposed the tensions that have simmered over the decade in which Benedict has lived as pope emeritus alongside Pope Francis.

Schoenborn said the publication of the book was an “unseemly indiscretion” and distanced himself from it. The statement on the Archdiocese’s website quoted him as saying, “I do not think it is right for such confidential information to be released, especially by the personal secretary.”

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