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The Vatican & Holocaust

Discussion in 'Issues Around the World' started by ethics, Dec 23, 2002.

  1. ethics

    ethics Pomp-Dumpster Staff Member

    The Vatican has (finally, to some) recognized that <a href="http://www.cbc.ca/stories/2002/12/20/pius_xii021220">Pope Pius XII may not have done</a> everything he could to stop the Holocaust, according to an article in Civilta Cattolica, a prestigious Roman Catholic magazine.

    "The role of Pius XII(Pontiff between 1939 and 1958) in relations to the Holocaust has long been <a href="http://www.cnn.com/WORLD/9803/16/vatican.holocaust/index.html">severely criticised by Jewish historians</a>, who accuse the Pope of turning his back to the Nazi atrocities.

    By contrast, the <a href="http://www.catholicleague.org/pius/framemain.htm">most fervent Catholic wings</a> have always flatly defended Pius, saying his <a href="http://www.ewtn.com/library/PAPALDOC/P12CH42.HTM">1942 Christmas message</a> should be regarded a strong denunciation of the Holocaust, but that the message failed to satisfy both the Allies and the Nazis.

    While Pope John Paul II has already issued a blanket apology for two millennia's worth of sins against the Jews and the Jewish faith done in the name of the Roman Catholic Church, is it time for a more sober reassessment of the most recent skeletons in the cupboard? Or will the Catholic Church continue to close their eyes and wish the history will go away?
  2. jamming

    jamming Banned

    Pius XII was between a rock and a hard place. He could of adopted a more supportive policy with the Jews and joined them in the Death Camps or he could do the following:

    If the Chief Rabbi of Rome converted to Catholicism and took the same first name which the Pope Pius XII had before being elevated to the Pope. It would seem to me that the Pope Pius XII must of done something impressive for the former Chief Rabbi of Rome to want that first name.
  3. ethics

    ethics Pomp-Dumpster Staff Member

    Jim, this is where I will be the usual ethics and blast you for that piece of propaganda you've posted.

    I'll try not to offend you or take this personally, but if you would do more reading on the matter, and not take the internet as a Christian apologists view that Mr. DeCelles took, you would see that Pius the 12th could have done a lot more and in fact caused more harm than good by his stance. I can cite you quite the opposite research on the matter with plenty of documentation to back it up.

    With years of reading about this manner, there's nothing out there I've yet NOT seen regarding this manner. The Pope, with the Catholic Church has been notoriuos Jew bashers since God know when. Why did Pope Paul make an apology a few years back? Because Catholics been nice to Jews (or other religions not their own)?
  4. jamming

    jamming Banned

    Why did they hide Jews in the Vatican? From the Nazi's? Seems to me that he was willing to take risks, but no one really knew in the sense of actually looking what was going on in those camps, it is one thing to know something intellectually, quite another to know personally.
  5. ethics

    ethics Pomp-Dumpster Staff Member

    Same reason Mother Teresa helped individuals while killing millions with her anti-abortion stance.

    Pope made a small gesture that saved a few, but boy did he fuck the Jews in the you know where with his public cowardice.

    There were a lot of brave Catholics who did go to their deaths along with Jewish children because they believed in something.

    The Pope? He is your poster child of how not to be a leader.
  6. jamming

    jamming Banned

    If that is so explain the Cheif Rabbi of Rome's Conversion and assumption of the Pope's First Name?
  7. jamming

    jamming Banned

    It is one thing to make a personal decision, it is another to risk putting millions of people not a risk, to being oppressed. He was quite willing to take personal chances, but not willing to risk the Church and its people wholesale.
  8. ethics

    ethics Pomp-Dumpster Staff Member

    I am not impressed with one man's conversions. There's been plenty of ignorant people who have done things for the wrong reasons or because of wrong thinking.

    I use myself as an example throughout my life.

    It does not make me more knowing or more educated.
  9. jamming

    jamming Banned

    Oh yeah, cop out, the one man that was most in the know and the target of the Nazi's, was just an accident or the work of an ignorant person.
  10. ethics

    ethics Pomp-Dumpster Staff Member

    Jim, look up Reich Concordat and come back to me, m'kay?
  11. jamming

    jamming Banned

    In Poland "during the course of the war, 18 percent of all Polish diocesan priests were killed."

  12. ethics

    ethics Pomp-Dumpster Staff Member

    You quoted what I asked you to look up and then give me more of that?

    Fine, you want to play the quote game, I can play.

    "Yet many Christians simply refused to help Jews, including those in positions of ecclesiastical influence. For example, when asked by the Vichy government in France about the anti-Semitic law promulgated in France on 2 June, 1941, the Vatican declared: 'In principle, there is nothing in these measures which the Holy See would find to criticize.'_ Again, when Dr. Eduardo Senatro, the Berlin correspondent of L'Osservatore Romano asked Pope Pius XII whether he would protest against the extermination of the Jews, the Pope is reported to have replied, 'Dear friend, do not forget that millions of Catholics serve in the German armies._ Shall I bring them into conflicts of conscience?'_ After the war the Vatican_ and others close to it helped thousands of war criminals to escape from Germany" (1)

    "However, the news of the enormity of the Jewish tragedy, as it reached the world outside German occupied Europe, brought public protests both against the German crimes_ and the Allied failure to take effective steps for the rescue of the victims._ Both in Britain_ and in America the protests came from public figures of all political parties, from the press_ and from the Church._ But in Rome, Pope Pius XII refused to endorse the Allied Declaration of December 1942, which condemned the cold-blooded extermination_ and which resolved that the criminals should not escape retribution" (2).

    One of the fascinations of any historical investigation is in teasing myth from reality._ For example, during WWII Pius XII never once mentioned the Nazis or the Jews by name in any of his public pronouncements, even at the height of the Shoah._ The usual response by supporters of Pius XII to this surprising fact is to quote an anecdote first mentioned by his housekeeper Sister Pasqualina Lehnert at a beatification tribunal._ She claimed that the consequences of the protest of the Dutch bishops concerning the deportation of Dutch Jews convinced him not to speak out against the Shoah._ This he supposedly told her in the privacy of the kitchen._ In a now well known passage Pius XII allegedly observed that, if the protests of the Dutch bishops cost the lives of 40000 Jews his protest would cost 200000 Jewish lives._ This story is repeated on RC web sites even though the evidence depends solely on the word of Pius XII's devoted_ and some say, manipulative, housekeeper._ There are also other good reasons to believe that the exchange never took place or was greatly exaggerated by Sister Pasqualina.

    The background to the foregoing anecdote is set in Holland in 1942._ Both the Protestant_ and RC Churches threatened to publicly protest the deportation of Dutch Jews (1)._ The German authorities offered them a deal._ If the Churches remained silent their converts from Judaism (so-called "non-Aryan Christians), converted before 1941, would be exempted from deportation._ The Protestants accepted the deal but the RC bishops did not._ Consequently, after the Dutch RC bishops protested, the so-called "non-Aryan RCs" were deported.

    There was never any suggestion that ordinary Dutch Jews would be exempt from deportation._ The only "Jews" about whom there was any doubt were the so-called "non-Aryan RCs" (i.e. RC converts from Judaism) converted before 1941._ By 14th September, 1942 the total number of Jews deported from Holland was 20588 (3)._ Thus even if the number of 40000, allegedly mentioned by Pius XII, referred to the total number of Jews deported by late 1942 it is wildly incorrect._ It certainly does not refer to the number of "non-Aryan RCs" deported due to the protest by the Dutch bishops._ The most recent research suggests that the total number of them deported was at most 92 persons (4)._ That is clearly 92 too many, but it throws serious doubt on Sister Pasqualina's claim of 40000 deportees, her recollection of events or both.

    The attempt by some conservative RCs to revise history concerning Pius XII's wartime record does not even convince some RCs:

    "Only towards the end of WW II Pius XII struggled through to actually help Jewish citizens and to contribute to their survival. Is this to be considered a late listening to reason? If this pope was so sensitive and heroic, as many want us to believe, how could he appoint Archbishop Stepinac as military vicar of the fascist Ustascha and even, in 1946, instead of regretting the atrocities of this murderous Croatian institution, promote Stepinac to cardinal? At the time even German troops had criticized Ustascha for its brutality in the murder of about 300,000 people. Instead of a beatification the Catholic Church should open all its files and archives, in order to allow some light into this time and around the person of this pope, without nervousness and pre-judgements" (5).

    The same author also deals with Cardinal Faulhaber (WII German RCC leader), quoting him thus:

    "In a time, when the heads of the world's empires stand opposite Germany in cool distance and more or less full of distrust, the Catholic Church, the highest moral power on earth, with its Concordat assured the new German government of her trust. For the respectability of the new government in foreign countries this act was of invaluable consequence" (Cardinal Faulhaber on February 14, 1937. Quotation in G. Levy, Die katholische Kirche und das Dritte Reich, Munich 1965, 108)" (6).
    Neither are some Germans convinced that a rewrite of Pius XII's wartime history is warranted:

    "Today these saving provisos interest almost nobody. On the other hand, a lecture by an American professor and rabbi, David Blumenthal, to the Papal Gregorian University at the end of September, brought some matters to light. During this gathering in Rome, he brought up for discussion among other subjects, if, and under what conditions an intervention by Pope Pius XII - born Eugenio Pacelli - could have saved at least a third of the murdered Jews.

    That he might have saved a third could have been true. But Blumenthal is mistaken if he thinks that had the Pope excommunicated Hitler, (who until he seized power had paid the Church Tax) and other prominent Catholic Nazis from the Church, he could have prevented anything. Just as the Fuhrer himself did not leave the Roman Catholic Church, he also admonished his deputies, who were officially attached to the Church , not to leave."_ Augstein, R.,_ "A Real Disgrace - Pope Pius XII and the Holocaust",_ "Der Spiegel" magazine - Cover Story (Nr. 43 / 1997) (7).

    Neither is a representative of the Simon Weisenthal Center convinced of Pius XII's innocence:
    "Rabbi Marvin Hier of the Simon Weisenthal Center recently told a New York audience that Pope Pius 'preferred silence' during the years of the Holocaust. He claimed that the Pope 'sat on the throne of Peter in stony silence, without every (sic) lifting a finger,' during the years of World War II. And he further argued that 'the Vatican adamantly refuses to open its files on this period,' because the evidence contained in the Vatican archives would prove the Pope's guilt" (8)

    The author of the foregoing article goes on to repeat the usual defence of Pius XII so typical of his right-wing supporters, many of whom wish to see him made a saint of the RCC._ Whether you want to believe that defence is up to you, however, the article shows that a representative of a leading Jewish anti-Nazi_ and Holocaust Research Institute has not bought the rewrite of Pius XII's wartime record.

    If you wish to get a more balanced view of the evidence concerning Pius XII's wartime record than is available on his supporters' web sites there are a number of books available._ I found the following useful.

    Lewy, G., "The Catholic Church_ and Nazi Germany," Weidenfeld Goldbacks, 1964.

    Cornwell, J., "Hitler's Pope._ The Secret History of Pius XII," Viking, 1999.

    The single book that appears to be most favoured by supporters of Pius XII is:
    Lapide, P.E., "The Last Three Popes_ and the Jews," London, 1967.


    Cohn-Sherbok, "The Crucified Jew,"_ Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., 1992, pps. 208-209.

    Genese, C., "The Holocaust", The Book Guild Ltd., 1988, p.111.
    "The Silence of Pius XII", BBC documentary in the "Reputations" series, 1996.

    Gilbert, "Final Journey", 159 - 60._ In: Cornwell, J., "Hitler's Pope._

    The Secret History of Pius XII", Viking, 1999.


  13. jamming

    jamming Banned

    Here is some specifics regarding the view on the Nazi's of Pope Pius XII and information on the Reich Concordat.

    All following quotes are from the:

  14. ethics

    ethics Pomp-Dumpster Staff Member

    Very selective quotations again?

    I think I know where this is going, so please try to influence the opinion of scholars and the Jews. Almost all of the influential Jews and historians I know, and others I've read, agree with the original post of this thread; Pope Pius XXII could have and should have done more for the Jews. The claim of 860,000 lives saved; most unbiased scholars, and certainly not Catholic apologists looking to come out clean with their religion (God forbid their Pope fucked up) assert that it was ordinary Catholics, priests and nuns working in groups or alone in spite of Pacelli, that rescued whatever small number of Jews. Six million died, plus 3 million Polish Catholic's in Poland alone.
  15. jamming

    jamming Banned

    You quote from Sources which are usually one of four anti-catholic resources. My quotes come from German Newspaper of the time, from first person sources which were there, and from the Pope's own Encyclical, that are his words that by tradition and the Catholic Church's law are that he is speaking as God's Representative on Earth. Most of your Quotes are from other people talking about the Pope or second hand sources. Quoting Cornwell's book is like quoting "Mein Kampf" about the qualities of Jews, the man was a rabid anti-Catholic. This is just another example of Religion Bashing funny how the people who were there and knew him, don't feel that way but the people who didn't know him and hate Catholics feel he betrayed the Jews. Personally I believe the people who were there including the Chief Rabbi of Rome during the War.
  16. ethics

    ethics Pomp-Dumpster Staff Member

    I am sorry, that wasn't biased. :rolleyes:

    Yes, if I am an asshole towards another human being I am going to announce as such?

    Because he blamed the Pope he is "rabid anti-Catholic'? He started out writing that book trying to disprove allegations.

    I've read too much, from both sides, to make my own--opposing--conclusion. What's really sickening is how rabid the Catholics are to jump on the "Oh he was an angel" bandwagon.
  17. ShinyTop

    ShinyTop I know what is right or wrong!

    The quotes you last posted Jamming appeared to be anti-Nazi, not pro-jewish. They appear opposed to Nazi infractions against the Church. A big difference between defending Catholicism and attacking the architects of the Holocaust.
  18. jamming

    jamming Banned

    Yeah biased against him, even they did not consider him a friend, if it had been positive German National Press, you sure as shooting would of quoted it.

    Sorry, Cornwell has said that he started out to disprove it, but many individuals who know him had said otherwise. He was looking to make money and controversy sells.
  19. jamming

    jamming Banned

    How is this one fit into your idea, you sure your not just jumping on the anti-religion bandwagon?

  20. ethics

    ethics Pomp-Dumpster Staff Member

    See, this is just wrong. Anytime anyone criticises something out of religion, you lump it as "anti-religious." Religious Catholics had a problem with how the Pope handled the Holocaust.

    You really need to get off all out defense everytime someone bashes an instant in religious history.

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