See the selected quotes from the following:
Christmas Day in 1941 and 1942.
The New York Times editorials praising Pope Pius
On Christmas Day, 1941, the New York Times,
commenting on Pius XII’s Christmas Message, carried the following
“The Pope’s Message
“The voice of Pius XII is a lonely voice in the
silence and darkness enveloping Europe this Christmas. … His program …
calls for … equal treatment for minorities, freedom from religious
persecution. … as we realize that he is about the
only ruler left o[n] the Continent of Europe who dares to raise his
voice at all. … This is indeed a measure of the "moral
devastation" he describes as the accompaniment of physical ruin and
inconceivable human suffering. …
the Pope put himself squarely against Hitlerism.”
Three Jews and a Pope
By Sister Margherita Marchione, Ph.D.
No Pope throughout history did more than Pope John Paul II to
create closer relations with the Jewish community, to oppose
anti-Semitism, and to make certain that the evils of the
Holocaust never occur again. … Pope John Paul II … declared that
“the Jews are our dearly beloved brothers,” and indeed “our
elder brothers in faith.” …
It is important to note:
1. The Holy See's February 9, 1916 condemnation of
anti-Semitism, which Eugenio Pacelli (the future Pius XII), then
working in the Secretary of State's office, helped formulate.
[This statement appeared in the New York Times, April 17, 1916
under the headline: “Papal Bull Urges Equality for Jews.”]
2. The January 22, 1943 report written by the Nazi's Reich
Central Security Office, which condemned Pius XII's 1942
Christmas Address for “clearly speaking on behalf of the Jews”
and which accused the Pontiff of being a “mouthpiece of the
Jewish War Criminals.” ...
3. The Nazi plan, reported in the July 5, 1998 issue of the
Milan newspaper Il Giornale, which described Hilter's plan to
“massacre Pius XII with the entire Vatican,” because of the
“Papal protest in favor of the Jews.” …
The Jewish chaplain of the Fifth American Army [stated during
a Thanksgiving service in Rome’s Jewish Temple]: “If it had not
been for the truly substantial assistance and the help given to
Jews by the Vatican and by Rome’s ecclesiastical authorities,
hundreds of refugees and thousands of Jewish refugees would have
undoubtedly perished before Rome was liberated.” (L’Osservatore
Romano, July 30, 1944). ...
The truth of the matter is that Pope Pius XII condemned
Hitler and protested more than 60 times. Politically the pope
could do nothing; however, in a humanitarian effort to save the
lives of Jews and other victims of Nazism, he did more than any
other world leader!
'Pope Fiction': Pius XII and the Jews
By Matt C. Abbott
Excerpt from Patrick Madrid's Pope Fiction on this topic:
The diary of Anne Frank
Anne Frank, the gifted Jewish teenager who perished if 1945 in the Nazi death
camp Bergen-Belson, was another victim of this Nazi reprisal against Dutch Jews.
Millions around the world have read The Diary of Anne Frank, her poignant memoir
which ends abruptly just before she sent to the death camp. Her story is filled
with haunting details of her experience of being literally sealed into secret
apartment in Holland with her family and another family. Her poignant account of
that suffocating existence (never once being able to go outdoors into the
sunlight!) is as riveting as it is tragic. Yet, even that hidden, stifled
existence, as terrible as it was, would have been infinitely better than the
fate that awaited Anne Frank.
All hell broke loose when the Dutch Catholic bishops issued their public
condemnation of the Nazi atrocities against the Jews. As we know, the Third
Reich was enraged at such an open act of defiance and its response was swift and
A pale green horse rampaged through Holland. Its rider was named Death, and hell
accompanied him. Storm troopers smashed through Amsterdam, Rotterdam and other
major Dutch cities in search of all hiding Jews. And they found thousands of
them. Anne Frank and her family were discovered. This sweet, intelligent young
girl was swept into the maw of the Nazi death machine and disappeared into the
oblivion of the camps.
She left this earth through a crematorium smokestack.
“Pius XII and
the Jews,” By historian and
Rabbi David G. Dalin, which was published in The Weekly Standard Magazine.
This article is also on the web. See Feb. 26, 2001 for the article
in their BOOK AND ART Section at the above URL.
... Given the recent attacks, the time has come for a new defense of
Pius—because, despite allegations to the contrary, the best historical
evidence now confirms both that Pius XII was not silent and that almost
no one at the time thought him so.
In January 1940, for instance, the pope issued instructions for Vatican
Radio to reveal "the dreadful cruelties of uncivilized tyranny" the Nazis
were inflicting on Jewish and Catholic Poles. Reporting the broadcast the
following week, the Jewish Advocate of Boston praised it for what it was:
an "outspoken denunciation of German atrocities in Nazi Poland, declaring
they affronted the moral conscience of mankind." The New York Times editorialized:
"Now the Vatican has spoken, with authority that cannot be questioned,
and has confirmed the worst intimations of terror which have come out of
the Polish darkness." In England, the Manchester Guardian hailed Vatican
Radio as "tortured Poland's most powerful advocate." ...
In March 1935, he wrote an open letter to the bishop of Cologne calling
the Nazis "false prophets with the pride of Lucifer." ...
The Nazis were "diabolical," he told friends privately. Hitler "is completely
obsessed," he said to his long-time secretary, Sister Pascalina. "All that
is not of use to him, he destroys; . . . this man is capable of trampling
on corpses." Meeting in 1935 with the heroic anti-Nazi Dietrich von Hildebrand,
he declared, "There can be no possible reconciliation" between Christianity
and Nazi racism; they were like "fire and water." ...
Indeed, throughout the 1930s, Pacelli was widely lampooned in the Nazi
press as Pius XI's "Jew-loving" cardinal, because of the more than fifty-five
protests he sent the Germans as the Vatican secretary of state.
When French bishops issued pastoral letters in 1942 attacking deportations,
Pius sent his nuncio to protest to the Vichy government against "the inhuman
arrests and deportations of Jews from the French-occupied zone to Silesia
and parts of Russia." Vatican Radio commented on the bishops' letters six
days in a row—at a time when listening to Vatican Radio was a crime in
Germany and Poland for which some were put to death. ("Pope Is Said to
Plead for Jews Listed for Removal from France," the New York Times headline
read on August 6, 1942. "Vichy Seizes Jews; Pope Pius Ignored," the Times
reported three weeks later.) In retaliation, in the fall of 1942, Goebbels's
office distributed ten million copies of a pamphlet naming Pius XII as
the "pro-Jewish pope" and explicitly citing his interventions in France.
A deeper examination reveals the consistent pattern. Writers like Cornwell
and Zuccotti see the pope's 1941 Christmas address, for example, as notable
primarily for its failure to use the language we would use today. But contemporary
observers thought it quite explicit. In its editorial the following day,
the New York Times declared, "The voice of Pius XII is a lonely voice in
the silence and darkness enveloping Europe this Christmas. . . . In calling
for a ‘real new order' based on ‘liberty, justice, and love,' . . . the
pope put himself squarely against Hitlerism."
So, too, the pope's Christmas message the following year—in which he
expressed his concern "for those hundreds of thousands who, without any
fault of their own, sometimes only by reason of their nationality or race,
are marked down for death or progressive extinction"—was widely understood
to be a public condemnation of the Nazi extermination of the Jews. Indeed,
the Germans themselves saw it as such: "His speech is one long attack on
everything we stand for. . . . He is clearly speaking on behalf of the
Jews. . . . He is virtually accusing the German people of injustice toward
the Jews, and makes himself the mouthpiece of the Jewish war criminals,"
an internal Nazi analysis reads. ...
A Dutch bishops' pastoral letter condemning "the unmerciful and unjust
treatment meted out to Jews" was read in Holland's Catholic churches in
July 1942. The well-intentioned letter—which declared that it was inspired
by Pius XII—backfired. As Pinchas Lapide notes: "The saddest and most thought-provoking
conclusion is that whilst the Catholic clergy in Holland protested more
loudly, expressly, and frequently against Jewish persecutions than the
religious hierarchy of any other Nazi-occupied country, more Jews—some
110,000 or 79 percent of the total—were deported from Holland to death
But Zuccotti, ... Cornwell's vicious attack in Hitler's Pope ...
All are about using the sufferings of Jews fifty years ago to force changes
upon the Catholic Church today.
It is this abuse of the Holocaust that must be rejected. A true account
of Pius XII would arrive, I believe, at exactly the opposite to Cornwell's
conclusion: Pius XII was not Hitler's pope, but the closest Jews had come
to having a papal supporter—and at the moment when it mattered most.
Righteous Gentile: Pope Pius XII and the Jews
By Rabbi David Dalin
Quotes From Catalyst Magazine:
Pope Pius XII Hero of
1998 Catalyst Magazine:
IN DEFENSE OF PIUS XII -- AGAIN!
by Sister Margherita Marchione
... principles against racial persecution and genocide as set forth
in the encyclical, "Mit Brennender Sorge" issued in 1937. As Secretary
of State, the future Pope Pius XII played an important part in drafting
the document. In fact, upon its publication, the Nazi press carried vulgar
cartoons and claims that "Pius XI was half Jewish and Cardinal Pacelli
was all Jewish." Two months before that anti-semitic horrors of Kristallnacht
(The Night of the Broken Glass), Pius XI stated: "Anti-Semitism is inadmissible;
spiritually we are all Semites." (Pius XII: Greatest Dishonoured, 1980,
The day after Cardinal Pacelli’s election to the Papacy, the Nazi newspaper
Berliner Morgenpost (March 3, 1939) stated its position clearly: "The election
of Cardinal Pacelli is not accepted with favor in Germany because he was
always opposed to Nazism and practically determined the policies of the
Vatican under his predecessor."
With the start of the war in September 1939, Pius XII pleaded that "in
occupied territory the lives, the property, the honor, the religious convictions
of the inhabitants will be respected." The following month he issued "Summi
Pontificatus," the encyclical condemning radicalism.
In his 1939 Christmas message to the Cardinals, Pius XII referred to
the invasion of Poland and related events: "We have been forced to witness
a series of acts which are irreconcilable, both with the practices of international
law, and with the principles of natural right based on the elementary feelings
of humanity; acts which demonstrate in what chaotic and vicious circles
we are now living….
"We find premeditated aggression against a small work-loving, peaceful
people on the pretext of a threat which never existed nor was possible.
We find atrocities and illicit use of means of destruction against old
men, women and children. We also find contempt for freedom and for human
life, from which originate acts which cry to God for vengeance." (The Tablet
of London, December 30, 1939, p. 748)
On January 27, 1940, Vatican Radio proclaimed to the world the dreadful
cruelties marked with uncivilized tyranny that the Nazis were inflicting
on the Jewish and Catholic Poles. The German ambassador protested while
the Nazis jammed the broadcasts.
Among the ninety-three Papal communications to German bishops in World
War II, a letter from Pius XII to Bishop von Preysing of Berlin is dated
April 30, 1943: "It was for us a great consolation to learn that Catholics,
in particular those of your Berlin diocese, have shown such charity towards
the sufferings of the Jews. We express our paternal gratitude and profound
sympathy for Monsignor Lichtenberg, who asked to share the lot of the Jews
in the concentration camps [Dachau] and who spoke up against their persecution
in the pulpit.
"As far as episcopal declarations are concerned, We leave to local bishops
the responsibility of deciding what to publish from Our communications.
The danger of reprisals and pressures – as well perhaps of other measures
due to the length and psychology of the war – counsel reserve. In spite
of good reasons for Our open intervention, there are others equally good
for avoiding greater evils by not interfering Our experience in 1942, when
We allowed the free publication of certain Pontifical documents addressed
to the Faithful justifies this attitude." [The Dutch bishops’ declaration
on behalf of the Jews, resulted in the deportation from Amsterdam to Auschwitz
of ninety per cent of them, including baptized Jews.]
... It is well known that, in consonance with the Pope’s direct
urging, hundreds of convents, monasteries, and other religious buildings
were opened, not only in Italy, but also in Poland, France, Belgium and
Hungary, to shelter and hide thousands of men, women, and children from
Everywhere those protecting Jews and other refugees were not immune
from suspicion and arrest, were sent to prison, and were treated with brutality
and contempt. Many were murdered in reprisal killings. Priests and nuns
were also arrested, imprisoned, and subjected to brutal interrogation.
Many were sent to concentration camps and gas chambers.
In his book The Last Three Popes and the Jews (Souvenir Press, London,
1967), Jewish historian Pinchas Lapide concludes that during the Nazi period
"Pius XII, the Holy See, the Vatican’s Nuncios, and the whole Catholic
Church saved between 700,000 and 850,000 Jews from certain death."
Jewish physicist Albert Einstein testified to his appreciation of Pius
XII’s actions in an article published in Time magazine (December 23, 1940,
p.38): "Only the Church stood squarely across the path of Hitler’s campaign
for suppressing truth. I had never any special interest in the Church before,
but now I feel a great affection and admiration because the Church alone
has had the courage and persistence to stand for intellectual truth and
Marc Saperstein, a professor of Jewish history and director of the program
in Judaic studies at the George Washington University wrote: "The suggestion
that Christian doctrines or practice led directly to the Nazi death camps
is misleading and inappropriate…. The fundamental responsibility for the
Holocaust lies with the Nazi perpetrators. Not with Pope Pius XII. Not
with the Church. Not with the teachings of the Christian faith." (Washington
Post, April 1, 1998)
1999 Catalyst Magazine:
CORNWELL'S ERRORS: REVIEWING HITLER'S POPE
Ronald J. Rychlak
[See this section for the real motives of John Cornwell and the
hidden agenda behind his book.]
1999 Catalyst Magazine:
"JEWS, CATHOLICS, AND POPE PIUS XII: IS THE MEDIA EXPRESSING PREJUDICE
by Sr. Margherita Marchione
Members of the media seem to deliberately falsify historical facts about
the Holocaust, periodically renewing their attacks on Pope Pius XII. Unfortunately
these false statements can engender the same hateful feelings that in the
past have led to both anti-Catholicism and anti-Semitism.
In the words of the Jewish-Hungarian scholar, Jeno Levai, it is a "particularly
regrettable irony that the one person [Pope Pius XII] in all of occupied
Europe who did more than anyone else to halt the dreadful crime and alleviate
its consequences is today made the scapegoat for the failures of others."
In 1940, in a letter to be read in all churches entitled Opere et Caritate
("By Work and by Love"), Pope Pius XII instructed the Catholic bishops
of Europe to assist all people suffering from racial discrimination at
the hands of the Nazis.
Two years later, on July 26, 1942, the day after the Dutch bishops ordered
– in all Catholic churches --- a strong denunciation of the Nazi deportation
of Jews, the Nazi occupation officers met in The Hague. The record of the
meeting clearly states that because the Catholic bishops interfered in
something that did not concern them, deportation of all Catholic Jews would
be completed within that week and no appeals for clemency would be considered.
Among those sent to the Auschwitz gas chamber at that time was Edith
Stein, a distinguished intellectual who, after her conversion from Judaism
to Catholicism, became a Carmelite nun. On October 11, 1998, Edith Stein,
known as Sister Benedicta of the Cross (1891-1942), was canonized by Pope
John Paul II. Edith Stein was killed because she was Jewish, but is also
true that the Nazis sent her and other converts to Auschwitz in retaliation
for the Dutch Catholic bishops’ pastoral letter condemning Nazi atrocities.
1998 Catalyst Magazine:
THE TRUTH ABOUT POPE PIUS XII
An honest evaluation of Pope Pius XII’s words and actions will exonerate
him from false accusations and show that he has been unjustly maligned.
The New York Times editorial (December 25, 1942) was specific: "The
voice of Pius XII is a lonely voice in the silence and darkness enveloping
Europe this Christmas...He is about the only ruler left on the Continent
of Europe who dares to raise his voice at all." The Pope’s Christmas message
was also interpreted in the Gestapo report: "in a manner never known before...the
Pope has repudiated the National Socialist New European Order [Nazism].
It is true, the Pope does not refer to the National Socialists in Germany
by name, but his speech is one long attack on everything we stand for.
…Here he is clearly speaking on behalf of the Jews."
Perhaps the rest of the world should interpret the Pope’s words as they
were meant and, undoubtedly, correctly understood by the Nazis, i.e.: POPE
PIUS XII WAS ALWAYS OPPOSED TO NAZISM.
The Jewish Community publicly acknowledged the wisdom of Pope Pius XII’s
diplomacy. In September 1945, Dr. Joseph Nathan—who represented the Hebrew
Commission—stated "Above all, we acknowledge the Supreme Pontiff and the
religious men and women who, executing the directives of the Holy Father,
recognized the persecuted as their brothers and, with great abnegation,
hastened to help them, disregarding the terrible dangers to which they
HOW PIUS XII PROTECTED JEWISH LIVES
by James Akin
... On April 28, 1935, four years before the War even started, Pacelli
speech that aroused the attention of the world press. Speaking to an
audience of 250,000 pilgrims in Lourdes, France, the future Pius XII stated
that the Nazis "are in reality only miserable plagiarists who dress up
old errors with new tinsel. It does not make any difference whether they
flock to the banners of social revolution, whether they are guided by a
false concept of the world and of life, or whether they are possessed by
the superstition of a race and blood cult."  It was talks like this,
in addition to private remarks and numerous notes of protest that Pacelli
sent to Berlin in his capacity as Vatican Secretary of State, that earned
him a reputation as an enemy of the Nazi party.
The Germans were likewise displeased with the reigning pontiff, Pius
XI, who showed himself to be a unrelenting opponent of the new German "ideals"—even
writing an entire encyclical, Mit Brennender Sorge (1937), to condemn them.
When Pius XI died in 1939, the Nazis abhorred the prospect that Pacelli
might be elected his successor.
Dr. Joseph Lichten, a Polish Jew who served as a diplomat and later
an official of the Jewish Anti-Defamation League of B’nai B’rith, writes:
"Pacelli had obviously established his position clearly, for the Fascist
governments of both Italy and Germany spoke out vigorously against
possibility of his election to succeed Pius XI in March of 1939, though
cardinal secretary of state had served as papal nuncio in Germany from
1917 to 1929. ...
Former Israeli diplomat and now Orthodox Jewish Rabbi Pinchas Lapide states that Pius XI "had good reason to make Pacelli the architect
his anti-Nazi policy. Of the forty-four speeches which the Nuncio
Pacelli had made on German soil between 1917 and 1929, at least forty
contained attacks on Nazism or condemnations of Hitler's doctrines
Pacelli, who never met the Fuhrer, called it 'neo-Paganism.'
"  ...
A few weeks after Pacelli was elected pope, the German Reich’s Chief
Security Service issued a then-secret report on the new Pope. Rabbi Lapide
provides an excerpt:
"Pacelli has already made himself prominent by his attacks on National
Socialism during his tenure as Cardinal Secretary of State, a fact
earned him the hearty approval of the Democratic States during the
elections. . . . How much Pacelli is celebrated as an ally of the Democracies
is especially emphasized in the French Press." 
Notice in particular that the Pope was not merely allowing Jews to
be hidden in different church buildings around Rome. He was hiding them
in the Vatican itself and in his own summer home, Castel Gandolfo. His
success in protecting Italian Jews against the Nazis was remarkable. Lichten
records that after the War was over it was determined that only 8,000 Jews
were taken from Italy by the Nazis —far less than in other European
countries. In June,1944, Pius XII sent a telegram to Admiral Miklos Horthy,
the ruler of Hungary, and was able to halt the planned deportation of 800,000
Jews from that country.
Rabbi Safran of Bucharest, Romania, sent
a note of thanks to the papal nuncio on April 7, 1944: "It is not easy
to find the right words to express the warmth and consolation we experienced
because of the concern of the supreme pontiff, who offered a large sum
to relieve the sufferings of deported Jews. . . . The Jews of Romania will
never forget these facts of historic importance." 
The Chief Rabbi of Rome, Israel Zolli, also made a statement of thanks:
"What the Vatican did will be indelibly and eternally engraved in our hearts.
. . . Priests and even high prelates did things that will forever be an honor
After the war, Zolli became a Catholic and, to honor the Pope for what
he had done for the Jews and the role he had played in Zolli’s conversion,
took the name "Eugenio"—the Pope’s given name—as his own baptismal name.
Zolli stressed that his conversion was for theological reasons, which was
certainly true, but the fact that the Pope had worked so hard on behalf
of the Jews no doubt played a role in inspiring him to look at the truths
ENDNOTES FOR ABOVE SECTIONS:
 Robert Graham, S.J., ed., Pius XII and the Holocaust (New Rochelle,
New York: Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights, 1988), 106.
 Joseph Lichten, "A Question of Moral Judgment: Pius XII and the
Jews," in Graham, 107.
 Pinchas E. Lapide, Three Popes and the Jews (New York: Hawthorn,
 Ibid., 121.
 Lichten, 130.
 American Jewish Yearbook 1944-1945, 233.
"A NASTY CARICATURE OF A NOBLE AND SAINTLY MAN"
Point by Point Rebuttal by Church Historian Dr. Peter Gumpel
ZENIT - september 16, 1999
Typical is the fact that thousands of Polish and other priests were
killed by the Nazis and that the standard work of Professor Dr. Ulrich
von Hehl (now in its third edition): "Priester unter Hitlers Terror" (Priests
-- in Germany -- Under the Terror of Hitler) is never mentioned or quoted
by Cornwell. On the whole, one must say that Cornwell, who has never lived
in a highly organized criminal police state, is totally unaware of the
situation prevailing in such a state and that, in consequence, a great
many of his judgements, appraisals, suggestions, etc., are completely unrealistic,
utopian and anachronistic. From an historical point of view, one
must be able to understand the situation as it was then and not judge it
with the hindsight from today’s situation in free countries. To proceed
in such an irresponsible manner is a capital mistake which is everywhere
present in the book of Cornwell.
See more on
Hitler’s Pope: The Secret
History of Pius XII
THE GOOD SAMARITAN:
JEWISH PRAISE FOR
POPE PIUS XII
by Dimitri Cavalli
In a March 6, 1939 editorial, "Leadership for Peace," the Palestine
Post in Jerusalem said: "Pius XII has clearly shown that he intends to
carry on the late Pope's [Pius XI] work for freedom and peace... we remember
that he must have had a large part to play in the recent Papal opposition
to pernicious race theories and certain aspects of totalitarianism ..."
In praising Cardinal Pacelli's election, the Jewish Chronicle in London
on March 10, quoted an anti-Nazi speech he delivered in Lourdes in April
1935 and the hostile statements expressed about him in the Nazi press.
"It is interesting to recall... on January 22 , the Voelkischer Beobachter
published pictures of Cardinal Pacelli and other Church dignitaries beneath
a collective heading of 'Agitators in the Vatican against Fascism and National
Socialism,"' the Jewish Chronicle noted. ...
Pius XII's decision to appoint Luigi Cardinal Maglione as the Vatican's
new Secretary of State also brought favorable reactions. The March 16,
1939 Zionist Review in London said that the Cardinal's appointment "confirms
the view that the new Pope means to conduct an anti-Nazi and anti-Fascist
Certainly, such statements made by Jewish newspapers and organizations
show they considered the newly elected Pope Pius XII a friend of democracy
and peace, and an enemy of racism and totalitarianism. Cardinal Pacelli's
role in negotiating the concordat with the Nazis did not cause any concern.
Instead, many Jews cited his anti-Nazi speeches, and his role as Vatican
Secretary of State, which helped produce the 1937 anti-Nazi encyclical,
Mit brennender Sorge, and numerous protests against the persecution of
the Catholic Church in Germany. ...
On January 26, 1940, the Jewish Advocate in Boston reported, "The Vatican
radio this week broadcast an outspoken denunciation of German atrocities
in Nazi [occupied] Poland, declaring they affronted the moral conscience
of mankind." Exiled Polish Cardinal August Hlond of Gnezo and Poznan had
given the Vatican detailed reports about the Nazi persecution of the Church
in Poland. On the Pope's orders, Vatican Radio broadcast the cardinal's
reports. The front-page story quoted one Vatican Radio broadcast as saying,
"Jews and Poles are being herded into separate ghettos, hermetically sealed
and pitifully inadequate for the economic subsistence of the millions designed
to live there." This broadcast was also important because it gave independent
confirmation of media reports about Nazi atrocities, which were previously
dismissed as Allied propaganda. ...
By early 1942, the Nazis began to implement their plans to exterminate
the Jews. The Vatican had no practical way of bringing these plans to a
halt, but sought to assist endangered Jews and other victims on a case-by-case
basis. This assistance ranged from actively opposing the deportations to
meeting the material and spiritual needs of refugees. For example, on April
14, 1942, Rabbi Naftali Adler and Dr. Max Pereles, the representatives
of thousands of Jewish refugees interned at the Ferramonti concentration
camp in southern Italy, sent a letter of thanks to the Pope, who sent "an
abundant supply of clothing and linen" to the children at the camp, and
took care of the prisoners' other needs. "This noble and generous gift
proves anew what the whole world knows and admires that Your Holiness is...
also the paternal guardian and promoter of the ideal of humanity for all
mankind," they wrote. (Actes, VIII, pp. 505-507). ...
The many tributes to Pius XII began in July . "It is gradually
being revealed that Jews have been sheltered within the walls of the Vatican
during the German occupation of Rome," reported the July 7 Jewish News
in Detroit. A July 14 editorial in the Congress Weekly, the official journal
of the American Jewish Congress, added that the Vatican also provided Jewish
refugees with kosher food.
Also on July 14, American Hebrew in New York published an interview
with Chief Rabbi Israel Zolli of Rome. "The Vatican has always helped the
Jews and the Jews are very grateful for the charitable work of the Vatican,
all done without distinction of race," Rabbi Zolli said. After the war,
Rabbi Zolli converted to Catholicism, which brought him much severe criticism
from some Jews. Dr. Zolli's conversion was widely attributed to his gratitude
for what the Pope did for Jews. In his 1954 memoirs, Before the Dawn, however,
Dr. Zolli strongly denied this assertion. Instead, he claimed to have witnessed
a vision of Christ, who called him to the faith. ...
During the following months, Rabbi Stephen Wise, the president of the
American Jewish Congress, Chief Rabbi Joseph Hertz of the British Empire,
composer Irving Berlin, Congressman Emmanuel Cellar of Brooklyn, the Emergency
Committee to Save the Jews of Europe, the Union of Orthodox Rabbis of the
United States and Canada, and the World Agudas Organization also lauded
Pius XII for helping endangered Jews. At the time, Rabbi Wise also condemned
Christian indifference toward the extermination of Jews. ...
Pope Pius XII died on October 8, 1958. Many Jewish organizations and
newspapers around the world mourned his passing, and recalled his wartime
efforts to rescue Jews. At the United Nations, Golda Meir, Israel's Foreign
Minister, said, "When fearful martyrdom came to our people in the decade
of Nazi terror, the voice of the Pope was raised for the victims. The life
of our times was enriched by a voice speaking out on the great moral truths
above the tumult of daily conflict." The Zionist Record (October 17) in
South Africa published Meir's moving eulogy along with tributes from Jewish
organizations to the late Pope.
"Adherents of all creeds and parties will recall how Pius XII faced
the responsibilities of his exalted office with courage and devotion,"
declared the Jewish Chronicle in London on October 10. "Before, during,
and after the Second World War, he constantly preached the message of peace.
Confronted by the monstrous cruelties of Nazism, Fascism, and Communism,
he repeatedly proclaimed the virtues of humanity and compassion."
In the Canadian Jewish Chronicle (October 17), Rabbi J. Stern recalled
that Pius XII "made it possible for thousands of Jewish victims of Nazism
and Fascism to be hidden away..." In the November 6 edition of the Jewish
Post in Winnipeg, William Zukerman, the former American Hebrew columnist,
wrote that no other leader "did more to help the Jews in their hour of
greatest tragedy, during the Nazi occupation of Europe, than the late Pope."
Representatives of the World Jewish Congress, American Jewish Congress,
American Jewish Committee, Synagogue Council of America, New York Board
of Rabbis, the Anti-Defamation League, Massachusetts Board of Rabbis, Rabbinical
Council of America, National Council of Jewish Women, and the Union of
American Hebrew Congregations also gracefully eulogized Pope Pius XII.
The Chief Rabbis of London, Rome, Jerusalem, France, Egypt, Argentina and
many other Jewish newspapers also paid tribute to the late Pope.
Letter Shows Future Pius XII Opposed Hitler in 1923
A letter written in 1923 by the future Pope Pius XII shows his early
opposition to Nazi anti-Semitism. ...
The letter dated Nov. 14, 1923, was written by then Archbishop Pacelli,
the Holy See's ambassador in Bavaria, in southern Germany, to Cardinal
Pietro Gasparri, Vatican secretary of state under Pope Pius XI.
The letter refers to Adolf Hitler's failed attempt to take over the
local government in Munich in the National Socialist Party's putsch of
Nov. 9, 1923 -- just five days before the day this letter was written.
In his letter, Archbishop Pacelli -- contrary to the allegations of a
number of recent authors such as John Cornwell (author of "Hitler's
Pope") on the relations between Pius XII and the Nazis -- denounces the
National Socialist movement as an anti-Catholic threat and at the same
time notes that the cardinal of Munich had already condemned acts of
persecution against Bavaria's Jews.
Inside The Vatican, a Catholic periodical, announced on March
4, 2003 that an extraordinary letter emerged from the Vatican archives.
The letter, written in 1923
by [Eugenio Pacelli] the future Pius XII,
proves his opposition to Nazi anti-Semitism. …
The letter is dated November 14, 1923, and was written by Eugenio Pacelli,
at that time the Holy See’s nuncio (ambassador) in Bavaria (southern Germany),
to Cardinal Pietro Gasparri, Vatican Secretary of State under Pope Pius
The letter refers to Adolf Hitler’s failed attempt to take over the
local government in Munich in the National Socialist Party’s "putsch" of
November 9, 1923 -- just five days before the day this letter was written.
In his letter, Pacelli -- contrary to the allegations of a number of
recent authors like John Cornwell (author of "Hitler’s Pope") on the relations
between Pius XII and the Nazis -- denounces the National Socialist movement
as an anti-Catholic threat and at the same time notes that the cardinal
of Munich had already condemned acts of persecution against Bavaria's Jews.
Therefore, this letter is previously unpublished proof that Pacelli
was in opposition to Nazism, seen both as anti-Catholic and as anti-Semitic,
already in 1923 -- 10 years before Hitler came to power, and 16 years before
Pacelli was elected Pope Pius XII.
The letter thus is important evidence against the charge of Cornwell
and others that Pius XII was in some way sympathetic to the Nazi regime.
Here [Click at
Article page 22 See
copy] is the original Italian text of the letter, which bears
protocol number 28961 and is dated November 14, 1923, and which deals with
the anti-Catholic nature of the nationalist movement in Munich. ...
Here is an English translation of the text:
"The facts about the nationalist uprising, which in recent days has
disturbed the city of Munich (see dispatches No. 443, 444 and 445) are
already known to your most reverend eminence from the Italian press; I
therefore do not need to repeat them in this respectful report. Still,
upon one point, which I alluded to already in dispatch No. 444, I believe
it opportune to communicate to Your Eminence some further details, that
is, regarding the demonstrations of an anti-Catholic character which accompanied
the uprising itself, but which have not surprised those who have followed
the publications of the papers of the right-wing radicals, like the Volkischer
Beobachter (Folkish Observer) and Heimatland (Homeland).
"This character was revealed above all in the systematic attacks on
the Catholic clergy with which the followers of Hitler and Ludendorff,
especially in street speeches, stirred up the population, thus exposing
the ecclesiastics to insults and abuse.
"The attacks were especially focused on this learned and zealous Cardinal
Archbishop, who, in a sermon he gave in the Duomo on the 4th of this month
and in a letter of his to the Chancellor of the Reich published by the
Wolff Agency on the 7th, had denounced the persecutions against the Jews.
"To this was added the unfounded and absurd rumor in the city, probably
spread intentionally, that accused the cardinal of having changed von Kahr’s
mind, who, as is known, while at the beginning in the Bürgerbraukeller
(beer hall) had apparently, to avoid violence, adhered to the Hitler-Ludendorff
coup d’etat, later came out against it.
"Thus is was that, during the confusing events of last Saturday, a numerous
group of demonstrators gathered in front of the front door of the bishop’s
residence, shouting "Down with the Cardinal!" ("Nieder mit dem Kardinal!")
"His Eminence was by good fortune absent from Munich, having left that
day to consecrate a new church in a town near Müldorf; but, when he
returned in his car the following evening, he was greeted by a similar
hostile demonstration. These anti-Catholic sentiments also manifested themselves
in chaotic student gatherings, the day before yesterday, in the University,
which were attended by people who did not attend the university (and were
not even from Bavaria) obliging the Rector in the end to close the university
until further notice. Also in the university, object recently of repeated
acts of the charitable solicitude and generosity of the Holy Father on
behalf of the students, there were denunciations of the Pope, of the Archbishop,
of the Catholic Church, of the clergy, of von Kahr, who, even though he
is a Protestant, was characterized by one of the orators as an honorary
member of the Society of Jesus (Ehrenmitglied der Jesuiten)."
[False accusation of ] " ... allowing the persecution of the
Jews to take place “under his very windows.” In fact, however, as
Thomas’s book details, the Pope took very decisive action on that day,
issuing several forceful protests against the murderous round-up, and
throughout the entire occupation intervened again and again for Rome’s
Jews. Although the ruthless Nazis were able to deport over 1,000 Jews
after the raid, the vast majority of them—over 85%—-survived. They were
being hidden and protected in Church-run institutions with Pius XII’s
knowledge and support; and the pope even opened up his own summer
residence at Castel Gandolfo to take in Jews targeted for death. As the
U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum notes: “For every Jew caught by the
Germans in Rome, at least 10 escaped and hid, many in the Vatican.”
Document confirms Pope Pius XII's efforts to save Jews,
By John Thavis
VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- A document found in a Rome convent confirms that Pope Pius
XII quietly ordered church institutions to open their doors to Jews fleeing Nazi
arrest and deportation, a church expert said.
"The Holy Father wants to save his children, including the Jews, and orders that
hospitality be shown to these persecuted people in the convents," said a note
found in the historical journal of the Augustinian Community of Santi Quattro
The note, written by one of the nuns and dated November 1943, had an appendix
with the names of 24 people, including Jews, who were hidden by the sisters of
the cloistered convent, located near the Colosseum.
Nazi soldiers began rounding up thousands of Jews in Rome and shipping them to
death camps in October 1943. One of the accusations against Pope Pius XII,
repeated in a number of books in recent years, was that he did little or nothing
to stop the deportations.
…The message delivered by these emissaries, Father Gumpel said, was "always the
same: 'Open your doors to everyone persecuted by the Nazis,' which naturally
applied in the first place to Jews."
…Father Gumpel said Pope Pius and his aides were careful not to issue written
orders because it would only provoke repercussions if they fell into the hands
of Nazi occupation forces in Rome.