Society That Thinks Pope Pius XII Rules

Friday, August 18, 2006

Pius XII Hid Jews During War

By: Philip Crispin

The Roman convent of Santi Quattro Coronati sheltered political fugitives and Jews during the Second World War on the direct orders of Pope Pius XII, according to the diary of one of the Augustinian convent's sisters.

According to the Italian daily La Stampa, which has seen the 60-year-old-plus diary, the Pope, who has often been criticised for keeping his counsel during the Holocaust, instructed the mother superior to open, exceptionally, the enclosure of the contemplative order's convent in order to shelter those fleeing the Germans.

The anonymous author of the journal provides detailed names and dates of more than 10 Jews and non-Jews who were sheltered in the convent from September 1942 to June 1944. One of these was Amalia Viterbo, the Jewish niece of Palmiro Togliatti, one of the creators of the Italian Communist Party and secretary of the Comintern before the Second World War.

The Augustinian sister writes that the Pope wished to save "his children as well as Jews" and ordered that monasteries and enclosures should be opened up to those persecuted.

Later, when the convent superior perceived that the SS were flouting the sanctuary of convent enclosures, she had false identity papers drawn up for her guests.

The diary should interest historians who have been at loggerheads for 60 years over the attitude of Pope Pius XII concerning concentration camps and the Holocaust. Many have accused him of complicity through his silence. [source]

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Prayer of Pope Pius XII To Our Lady Of The Assumption

O Immaculate Virgin,
Mother of God and Mother of Humanity,
we believe with all the fervour of our faith
in your triumphal Assumption
both in body and in soul into heaven
where you are acclaimed as Queen
by all the choirs of angels
and all the legions of saints;
we unite with them to praise and bless the Lord
who has exalted you above all other pure creatures
and to offer you the tribute of our devotion and our love.

We know that your gaze,
which on earth watched over the humble
and suffering humanity of Jesus,
in heaven is filled with the vision
of that humanity glorified
and with the vision of uncreated Wisdom,
and that the joy of your soul
in the direct contemplation of the adorable Trinity
causes your heart to throb with overwhelming tenderness;
and we, poor sinners whose body weights down
the flight of the soul,
beg you to purify our hearts so that,
while we remain below,
we may learn to see God and God alone
in the beauties of his creatures.

We trust that your merciful eyes
may deign to gaze down upon our miseries and anguish,
upon our struggles and our weaknesses;
that your countenance may smile
upon our joys and our victories;
that you may hear the voice of Jesus
saying to you of each one of us,
as He once said to you of His Beloved Disciple:
"Behold you son,"
and we who call upon you as our Mother,
we, like John, take you as the guide,
strength and consolation of our mortal life.

We are inspired by the certainty that your eyes,
which wept over the earth crimsoned by the blood of Jesus,
are yet turned toward this world
racked by wars and persecutions,
the oppression of the just and the weak.
From the shadows of this vale of tears,
we seek in your heavenly assistance,
tender mercy, comfort for our aching hearts,
and help in the trials of Church and country.

We believe finally that in the glory where you reign,
clothed with the sun and crowned with stars,
you are, after Jesus,
the joy and gladness of all the angels and the saints,
and from this earth,
over which we tread as pilgrims,
comforted by our faith in the future resurrection,
we look to you our life,
our sweetness, our hope;
draw us onward with the sweetness of your voice,
so that one day, after our exile,
you may show us Jesus,
the blessed fruit of your womb.
O clement, O loving,
O sweet Virgin Mary.

Amen.