Pope Francis’ favored Italian interviewer Eugenio Scalfari is now claiming that the Pope told him that Jesus did not have a bodily resurrection after His passion and death on the cross, but that the man “disappeared” and he came forth from the tomb “in the semblance of a spirit.”
The Pope has granted numerous interviews to Scalfari that have stirred confusion and questions about the Pope’s beliefs. So far, the Pope himself has not issued any personal denial or clarification in the wake of Scalfari’s claims and has not said he will stop granting interviews to the atheist journalist.
Scalfari is a founder of La Repubblica, which has long been critical of the Vatican and the Catholic Church. The octogenarian journalist does not have the practice of recording his conversations with the Pope, as is the journalistic standard in interviews of this importance, but apparently relies on his memory to present his interpretation of the meetings.
Writing in the Italian daily La Repubblica on Tuesday (see full Italian text here), Scalfari related what Pope Francis allegedly told him about the Resurrection of Jesus.
“He was a man until he was placed in the tomb by the women who recomposed his body. That night, in the tomb, the man disappeared and came forth from the grotto in the semblance of a spirit that met the women and the Apostles while still preserving the shadow of the person, and then he definitely disappeared.”
The bodily resurrection of Christ from the dead is a central tenet of the Christian faith. St. Paul told the Corinthians that “if Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith” (1 Cor. 15:14).