Pius XII and the Jews, the controversy continues

When I visited the Holocaust Museum on Washington D.C. I wrote in the book at the end that the presentation of this story would never be complete so long as Pius XII was not acknowledged as one of the righteous gentiles who saved so many lives.

There has been a dust up lately between Israel and the Holy See over… yes… Pius XII.  Again. 

The Yad Vashem museum had posted in a display erected in 2005 a photo of Pius XII with comments so offensive to Catholics that the Apostolic Nuncio H.E. Antonio Franco, pulled out of the ceremony for the "Shoah Day" in Jerusalem. 

The comments with the photo?

Elected in 1939, the Pope set aside a letter against antisemitism and racism prepared by his predecessor.  Also, when reports of the slaughters of Jews reached the Vatican, he reacted with neither written or verbal protests.  In 1942, he did not take part in the condemnation expressed by the Allies for the killing of the Jews.  When they were deported from Rome to Auschwitz, Pius XII did not intervene…. His silence and the absence of directives forced priests in Europe to decide on their own how to behave.

Subsequently, the director of the Museum, Avner Shalev, wrote a letter to Franco saying that the Museum was willing to discuss the Vatican’s concerns.  At the last minute, His Excellency showed up at the ceremony with the statement that he had obtained by his initial protest the attention due the situation.

The directors statement"

Yad Vashem believes that it was inappropriate to link an issue of historical research with commemoration of the victims of the Holocaust.

Of course, as Andrea Tornielli points out in il Giornale, there has been no indication that the Museum is going to change the offensive comments posted with the photo of Pius XII.   

Anything in the NYT on this?  You can bet it will be thin gruel.

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About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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