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Pope's new book on Jesus of Nazareth is released

2012-11-20 Vatican Radio

(Vatican Radio) Pope Benedict's third and final volume in his international bestselling series, Jesus of Nazareth, was presented to the press in the Vatican on Tuesday. Entitled "The Infancy Narratives," the book explores the infancy and early life of Jesus and details how they are as relevant today as they were two thousand years ago.

Listen to this report by Vatican Radio's Susy Hodges:

The text of the report follows:

Pope Benedict’s latest book is being published in nine languages simultaneously and hits bookstores in 50 countries on November the 21st. A further 20 languages are in the pipeline and will be published during the coming months. Editors say the worldwide print run of the first edition will be more than a million copies.

Divided into a forward, four chapters and an epilogue, the Pope's latest book traces and analyses the gospel narratives from the annunciation of John and Jesus' birth up the events surrounding his presentation in the temple at the age of 12. Numbering 127 pages in the English edition, the book is defined by its author as a “small antechamber to the trilogy on Jesus of Nazareth. The two previous volumes of the trilogy written by the Pope dealt with the adult life of Jesus and his public ministry.

At a news conference in the Vatican where the book was presented to the press, the director of the Holy See’s Press Office Father Federico Lombardi said he was filled with admiration and gratitude that the Pope managed to complete this work, begun 8 years ago, despite his very busy schedule.

The book begins with the Pope discussing the genealogy of Jesus whilst Chapter two discusses the annunciation of the birth of St John the Baptist and that of Jesus. Chapter three is centred on the birth of Jesus and its historical context and the last Chapter is dedicated to the three Magi.

Like the two earlier books in the trilogy, this latest work by Pope Benedict is bound to be another international bestseller.