The Vatican, the Jews and Israel


catholic_jewish_relations_3The Vatican announced on September 30, 2013 that deceased Popes John XXIII and John Paul II will be canonized as saints at a Vatican ceremony, which will take place on April 27, 2014.  By happenstance, these two popes did more than any others to foster close ties with the Jews and the Jewish State. Pope John XXIII was pontiff from 1958-1963, and the Polish-born Pope John Paul II, the first non-Italian Pope in 400 years, led the Catholic Church from 1978-2005.  Their heroic actions cleared the way for ever warmer relations between the Catholic Church and the Jewish State.

It was Pope John Paul II’s (born Karol Jozef Wojtyla) lifelong Jewish friend and schoolmate from his Polish hometown of Wadowice, Jerzy Kluger, who influenced him to make the historic visit to the great Rome Synagogue on April 13, 1986.  There, in a memorable expression of respect for Judaism, he intoned, “You are our dearly beloved brothers, and in a certain way, it could be said that you are our elder brothers.”  His visit is acknowledged as the first by a pope since the early history of the Roman Catholic Church.  Pope John Paul II prayed together with the Chief Rabbi of Rome at the time, Elio Toaff, in an attempt to show solidarity with Jews and Judaism.

Earlier in 1979, John Paul II became the first pope to visit the Auschwitz concentration camp in Poland where many of his compatriots (mostly Polish Jews) perished during the Nazi occupation during World War II. In 1998 he issued “We Remember: A Reflection on the Shoah,” which outlined his thinking on the Holocaust.

On December 30, 1993, the Vatican established diplomatic relations with the Jewish State.  A Vatican Nunciature in Jerusalem, Israel, and an Israeli embassy in Rome were established in January 1994.  For Pope John Paul II and the Catholic Church this meant reconciliation with the Jewish people, and it was viewed by the Israeli government as normalization.  Prior to the establishment of diplomatic relations, the Vatican’s interests were handled by the Apostolic Delegate to Jerusalem and Palestine, the Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem and the Custodian of the Holy Land.

In 2000, Pope John Paul II visited Israel where he publicly apologized for the persecution of the Jews over the centuries by the Catholics, including the Holocaust (he, as Karol Wojtyla, saved a 13-old Jewish girl during the war and helped many other Jews). He also left a note in the Western Wall pleading for forgiveness.

In order to understand how far the Catholic Church was moved by both popes it is important to look at the actions of another pope, Pius X, who had a private meeting with Theodore Herzl, the father of modern political Zionism and the spiritual founder of the Jewish State of Israel, on January 25, 1904.

Following the first Zionist Congress in 1897, which took place in Basel, Switzerland, Herzl sought out Pope Pius X in the hopes of gaining his sympathetic understanding of the Zionist cause.  The meeting came in the wake of devastating pogroms against Jews of Russia, Poland, and other Eastern European lands, and rabid anti-Semitism in Western Europe.  At issue was the return of these persecuted Jews to their ancestral home.  Pope Pius X’s reaction was: “We are unable to favor the movement [Zionism].  We cannot prevent the Jews from going to Jerusalem, but we could never sanction it.  The ground of Jerusalem has been sanctified by the life of Christ.  As head of the Church, I cannot answer you otherwise.  The Jews have not recognized our Lord; therefore we cannot recognize the Jewish People.”

The Church’s hostile stance continued despite the Holocaust and the establishment of Israel on May 14, 1948.  The Osservatore Romano, the official organ of the Vatican proclaimed at that time, “Modern Israel is not the authentic heir of biblical Israel, but constitutes a lay state. This is why the holy land and its sacred places belong to Christianity, the veritable Israel.”

In contrast are the words of Pope John Paul II who said in a 1994 interview with Tad Szulc published in Parade magazine: “It must be understood that Jews, who for two thousand years were dispersed among the nations of the world, had decided to return to the land of their ancestors.  This is their right.  And this right is recognized even by those who look upon the nation of Israel with an unsympathetic eye.  This right was also recognized from the outset by the Holy See, and the act of establishing diplomatic relations with Israel is simply an international affirmation of this relationship.”

Italian-born Monsignor Angelo Giuseppe Roncalli, later to become Pope John XXIII, will forever be remembered as the Pope that truly changed Catholic-Jewish relations.  The Second Vatican Council and the declaration, Nostra Aetate (In Our Time), are the most critical landmarks in this relationship. During WWII, Msgr. Roncalli, then the Apostolic Delegate to Turkey, saved Jews fleeing the Nazis by providing them with baptismal certificates.  He worked with the delegation of the Jewish Agency of Palestine in Istanbul in the undercover delivery of immigration certificates to Palestine for Jewish refugees in Europe.  Additionally, he urged Pope Pius XII to receive then Chief Rabbi of Palestine, Yitzhak Halevy Herzog, who wished to plead personally for the rescue of Jews throughout Eastern Europe.  Pope Pius XII flatly refused to see him.

Immediately upon becoming Pope John XXIII, on October 28, 1958, he announced his intention of calling for an Ecumenical Council (held on January 20, 1959).  On the ‘Declaration on Jews’ dealing with the alleged collective guilt of the Jews in the death of Jesus, 1821 delegates rejected the charge of Jewish collective guilt, while 188 (mostly Arab-Christians) approved.  And the delegates, by a vote of 1821 to 245, determined that ‘Jews must not be represented as accursed or rejected by God.’ Another vote, regarding “rejecting persecution against the Jewish people,” passed 1905 to 199.

Pope John XXIII ordered the Church to delete the expression “perfidious Jews” from the Good Friday prayers.

These positive changes in the Catholic Church towards the Jewish people were influenced by facts.  The Holocaust in Christian Europe left no doubt that the Church’s anti-Judaism (as Cardinal Cassidy once termed it in response to a question posed by this writer as to whether the pogrom in Kielce, Poland on July 4, 1946, soon after the Holocaust was anti-Judaism or anti-Semitism) had transformed into murderous anti-Semitism, and that the Church’s teachings must change.  The re-establishment of the Jewish State of Israel in 1948, forced the Church to recognize the reality of Jewish revival.  Finally, the stunning Six-Day War Israeli victory, against all odds, convinced the Church that God, after all, is protecting his covenanted people.

The two-covenant theology proposed by the German-Jewish philosopher Franz Rosenzweig, which argued that Jews are already with the Father (God), and need no intercession of Jesus, was gradually absorbed into Christian thinking.  It is indeed reflected in the words of the Nostra Aetate which declares: “God holds the Jews most dear for the sake of their fathers; He does not repent of the gifts He makes.” Nor does God abrogate his covenant with His people …

Reverend Dr. Bill Harter, a Presbyterian Church USA pastor, commented to this writer that he hopes that mainline Protestant churches will reach the same understanding the Catholic Church has reached in their relationship with Jews and Israel.

Nostra Aetate and subsequent changes in Catholic teaching regarding Jews have had positive effects in both North America, and the West — due in large measure to the two great and truly humanitarian popes, Pope John XXIII and Pope John Paul II.

Both Israel and Jewish communities worldwide should enthusiastically welcome the canonization and sainthood of these two great Catholic leaders.

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  • defcon 4

    I often wonder what a group of 1st century Jews would think of the religion created to honor them. Or the fact that they’ve been re-invented w/properly anglicized names that didn’t exist when they lived. To be fair, I heard from a Catholic priest that it used to be required for members of the clergy to learn Hebrew, along w/Greek and Latin (of course).

  • defcon 4

    Pope John Paul II supported the state of Israel. I wonder if this is what prompted his attempted assassination by a Turkish muslime.

    • southwood

      Didn’t JPII work for the Farben chemical company during WWI when they were supplying chemicals for use in Auschwitz to exterminate the Jews ?

  • Larry Larkin

    Don’t forget that when he was Cardinal of Paris Angelo Roncalli insisted that Jewish children who had been baptised during WWII to protect them be returned to their surviving Jewish relatives, against the wishes of Pius in Rome. When Pius XII said no, Roncalli went ahead and did it anyway.

    • boeningsol321

      My Uncle Lincoln just got a new yellow Subaru BRZ Coupe by
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    • dqban22

      In November, 1943, Herzog, Chief Rabbi of Jerusalem, wrote to Cardinal Roncalli, (the future Pope John XXIII) then Apostolic Delegate to and Greece, stating: “I take this opportunity to express to your Eminence my sincere thanks as well as my deep appreciation of your kindly attitude to Israel and of the invaluable help given by the Catholic Church to the Jewish people in its affliction. Would you please convey these sentiments which come from Sion, to His Holiness the Pope (Pius XII) along with the assurances that the people of Israel know how to value his assistance and his attitude.” (24) The American Jewish Welfare Board wrote to Pius XII on July 1944 to express their appreciation for the protection given to the Jews during the German occupation of Italy.

      In 1944 the War Refugee Board came into existence as the united effort of several American Jewish organizations. During and after the war, the War Refugee Board publicly acknowledged its close relationship with
      the Holy See. The documentation includes the correspondence from eminent rabbinical leaders who made special appeals to the Holy See; among them are the Grand Rabbi of Jerusalem, Dr. Issac Herzog; the Grand Rabbi of the British Empire, Dr. Joseph Hertz; and Rabbi Abraham Kalmanowitz, leader of the rabbinical school of Mir, in Lithuania.

      Fr. William Saunders has quoted Dr. Raphael Cantoni, a leader in Italy’s Jewish Assistance Committee, declaring that “The Church and the Papacy have saved Jews as much and insofar as they could Christians.
      Six million of my co-religionists have been murdered by the Nazis…but
      there would have been many more victims had it not been for the efficacious intervention of Pius XII.” (25)

      • defcon 4

        I didn’t know this.

  • Silver Gonzales

    There is no doubt that the 1st century Jewish people made a terrible mistake to allow translations of the scriptures from Hebrew to Latin to be done with their participation.

    Without Judaism there is NO Christianity. Christianity has added ZERO to Judaism and Euro Christianity and Catholicism has been called ” a lot of Christ but no Jesus”.

    Very few Christian pastors and priests have any clue to what Deborah, David, Samson, Michael, Joseph, Joshua, Jose, Joel, and other Hebrew names mean, nor is there any curiosity on their part. All they can do is memorize. I find that strange. I suppose reading Hebrew to their flock would anger them.

    But the irony is that Christians, especially in America, are Israel’s BFF. American Jews overwhelmingly support Obama and the Demoncrats.

    • D_boy

      “Christianity has added ZERO to Judaism” to the blind anyway…

    • defcon 4

      I’ve met decent Christians that support Israel and don’t seem to have any animosity towards the Jewish people, but I have met others that still cling to their delusional antisemitism. Most are completely unaware of who Jesus or his apostles were.

      The Torah and Tanakh were translated to Greek centuries before they were translated to Latin — probably somewhere around the time Alexander the Great visited Jerusalem.

  • 1Indioviejo1

    As a teen growing up in Central America I remember the Good Friday mention of “Jewish perfidy” and the subsequent anti-Jewish sermon by an Indian Catholic priest in a mostly indian country where I knew of only a few Jews. It bothered me and it stuck with me. I believe it had a completely opposite effect. I read about the Holocaust, read history, and concluded that the Church was wrong. I am glad the Church eventually had such enlightened men as John XXIII and John Paul II to lead it out of institutional prejudice. I hope that “Nostra Aetate” brings back an Urban II, or Pius V, to lift the vail off Islam and show it in its full satanic subversion of humanite because ” Deus Vult”.

    • Barbaracvm

      Pope Pius XII did a lot to save the Jews even though he seems to be forgotten.

      • southwood

        No, he didn’t do much for the Jews at all, very little in fact. He was notorious for his silence during WWI when many were pleading with him to speak out. Where do you get your information ? Your sources are dishonest.

        • Ray

          The wartime Jewish Chief Rabbi of Rome, Israel Zoli, thought so highly of Pope Pius’s effort on behalf of the Italian Jews, that he converted to Catholicism.

          • dqban22

            Israel Honors Pius XII

            Israeli senior diplomat and nowOrthodox Jewish Rabbi, Pinchas Lapide, with access to Yad Vashem’s archives,
            has stated in his book, “Three Popes and the Jews”, that “The Catholic Church relief and rescue program under the pontificate of Pius XII was instrumental in saving the lives of as many as 860,000 Jews from certain death at Nazi’s hands. That was more than all other Churches, religious institutions and international rescue
            organizations put together.” (17) The Israelis recognized the lives saved by planting a forest, in commemoration, of as many trees in theNegeb, SE of Jerusalem. This forest was shown to Pope Paul VI during his first state visit to Israel.

            At the end of the War, the World Jewish Congress, the
            American Jewish Committee, Albert Einstein, and many other prominent Jewishleaders expressed their deep gratitude toward Pius XII and the Catholic Church.
            On the death of Pius XII (1958), Golda Meir, the Israeli Minister of Foreign Affairs, gave a heartfelt eulogy for the Popebefore the UN Assembly.

            In his scholar book, “TheLast Three Popes and the Jews”, Lapide said that Pius XII was one of the few world leaders outside the Jewry itself who was quick to recognize the danger of Nazism. Lapide demonstrates
            convincingly the consistent and active protection provided to the Jews by the papacy. In Lapide’s words:

            “When armed force ruled well-nigh omnipotent, and morality was at its lowest ebb, Pius XI commanded non of the former and could only appeal to the latter, in confronting with bare hands, the full might of evil.

            A sounding protest, which might turn out to be self-thwarting-or quiet piecemeal rescue? Loud words- or prudent deeds? The dilemma must have been sheer agony, for whichever course he chose horrible consequences were inevitable. Unable to cure the sickness of an entire civilization, and unwilling to bear the brunt of Hitler’s fury, the Pope,unlike many far mightier than he, alleviated, relieved, appealed, petitioned-and saved as most efficient he could by his own lights.

            Who, but a prophet or a martyr could have done much more?

            The Talmud teaches us that ‘whoever preserves one life, it is accounted to him by Scripture as if he had preserved a whole world.’

            If this is true-and it is as true as that of most Jewish of tenets, the sanctity of human life-then Pius XII deserves that forest in Judean hills, which kindly people of Israel proposed for him in October 1958. A memorial forest with 860,000 trees.” (Emphasis added. “Three Popes and the Jews.” pp.267-269)

        • dqban22

          THE RESCUE OF THE
          JEWS. The Holy See made every possible
          effort to help the Jews.

          Jewish population in Europe as the war begins

          When Hitler came to power, about 6 million Jews lived in
          Central and Western Europe and 3 million inside the Soviet Union. About 600,000 were German, 180,000 Austrian,
          270,000 French, 340,000 British, 150,000 Dutch, 360,000 Checks, 500,000
          Hungarian, and 3 ½ million Poles. The
          first attacks against the German Jews started in March 1933 by way of several
          anti-Semite laws. Albert Einstein, Sigmund Freud and many other important
          scientists were among the 100,000 Jews who were able to escape between 1933 and
          1939.

          Israel Honors Pius XII

          Israeli senior diplomat and now
          Orthodox Jewish Rabbi, Pinchas Lapide, with access to Yad Vashem’s archives,
          has stated in his book, “Three Popes and
          the Jews”, that “The Catholic Church relief and rescue program under the pontificate of
          Pius XII was instrumental in saving the lives of as many as 860,000 Jews from
          certain death at Nazi’s hands. That was
          more than all other Churches, religious institutions and international rescue
          organizations put together.” (17) The Israelis recognized the
          lives saved by planting a forest, in commemoration, of as many trees in the
          Negeb, SE of Jerusalem. This forest was shown to Pope Paul VI during his first
          state visit to Israel.

          At the end of the War, the World Jewish Congress, the
          American Jewish Committee, Albert Einstein, and many other prominent Jewish
          leaders expressed their deep gratitude toward Pius XII and the Catholic Church.
          On the death of Pius XII (1958), Golda Meir,
          the Israeli Minister of Foreign Affairs, gave a heartfelt eulogy for the Pope
          before the UN Assembly.

          In his scholar book, “The
          Last Three Popes and the Jews”, Lapide said that Pius XII was one of the
          few world leaders outside the Jewry itself who was quick to recognize the
          danger of Nazism. Lapide demonstrates
          convincingly the consistent and active protection provided to the Jews in
          Europe by the papacy. In Lapide’s words:

          “When armed force ruled well-nigh omnipotent, and morality was at its
          lowest ebb, Pius XI commanded non of the former and could only appeal to the
          latter, in confronting with bare hands, the full might of evil.

          A sounding protest, which might
          turn out to be self-thwarting-or quiet piecemeal rescue? Loud words- or prudent
          deeds? The dilemma must have been sheer agony, for whichever course he chose
          horrible consequences were inevitable. Unable to cure the sickness of an entire
          civilization, and unwilling to bear the brunt of Hitler’s fury, the Pope,
          unlike many far mightier than he, alleviated, relieved, appealed,
          petitioned-and saved as most efficient he could by his own lights.

          Who, but a prophet or a martyr could have
          done much more?

          The Talmud teaches us that ‘whoever preserves one life, it is
          accounted to him by Scripture as if he had preserved a whole world.’

          If this is true-and it is as true as that of
          most Jewish of tenets, the sanctity of human life-then Pius XII deserves that
          forest in Judean hills, which kindly people of Israel proposed for him in
          October 1958. A memorial forest with 860,000 trees.” (Emphasis added. “Three Popes and the Jews.” pp.267-269)

      • dqban22

        On February 28, 1945, the Chief Rabbi of Jerusalem, Isaac
        Herzog, sent a letter of gratitude to the Apostolic Nuncio in Rumania, Msgr. Andrea Cassulo, stating that: “The people of Israel will never forget what His Holiness and his illustrious delegates, inspired by the eternal principles of religion which
        form the very foundations of civilization, are doing for us unfortunate brothers and sisters in the most tragic hour of our history, which is living prove of divine Providence in this world.” (31)

        Rabbi Herzog’s heartfelt words should suffice to forever end the slanderous attacks to the memory of the great protector of the Jews, Pius XII and the Catholic Church.

        To those seeking the truth, what a better witness than the testimony of Albert Einstein, the great Jewish physicist, who had first hand experience of the horrors of Nazism? In 1944 he said: “Being a lover of freedom, when the Nazi revolution came in Germany, I looked to the universities to defend it, but the universities were immediately silenced. Then I looked to the great editors of newspapers, but they, like the universities were silenced in a few short weeks. Then I looked to individual writers…they too were mute. Only the Church,” Einstein concluded, “stood squarely across the path of Hitler’s campaign for suppressing the truth…I never had any special interest in the Church before, but now I feel great affection and admiration…and am forced thus to confess that what I once despised, I now
        praise unreservedly.”(33)

      • dqban22

        Papa Pío XII: «Debes
        sentirte orgulloso de ser judío»

        Descubierto el testimonio de un joven judío publicado en 1944

        ROMA, jueves, 16 noviembre 2006 (ZENIT.org).- Un
        artículo publicado el 28 de abril de 1944 por un joven judío en «The Palestine
        Post», convertido a partir de 1950 en «The Jerusalem Post» (el diario israelí
        más importante y difundido), demuestra el aprecio de Pío XII por el
        «pueblo elegido».

        En el artículo, publicado en la página seis de
        la citada edición, con el título «Una Audiencia papal en tiempo de guerra», y
        firmado «Por un refugiado» (al pie se dice que el autor del artículo llegó a
        Palestina en la nave de refugiados «Nyassa»), el escritor relata que en otoño
        de 1941 fue recibido, junto a otros judíos, en audiencia por el Papa Pío XII.

        Cuando el Santo Padre se le acercó, el joven reveló haber nacido en Alemania
        pero ser judío, y el Papa le respondió: «Dime, hijo, ¿qué puedo hacer por ti?».

        El joven judío contó al Papa el naufragio de los judíos refugiados que fueron
        salvados por una nave italiana en el mar Egeo y hechos prisioneros en un campo
        en una isla local. El pontífice escuchó atentamente y se preocupó de la
        situación física y sanitaria de los judíos hechos prisioneros.

        Según el artículo, a continuación Pío XII le dijo: «Has hecho bien en venir
        aquí a contarme esta historia, ya estaba informado al respecto. Ven mañana con
        un informe escrito y entrégalo a la Secretaría de Estado, que se encargará de
        la cuestión. Pero ahora, respecto a ti, hijo, eres un joven judío. Sé bien lo
        que esto significa y espero que tú estés siempre orgulloso de ser judío».

        A continuación, el autor del artículo subraya que el pontífice alzó la voz de
        manera que todos en la sala pudieran escucharlo claramente: «Hijo, aquello de
        lo que eres merecedor sólo el Señor lo sabe, pero créeme, ¡tú tienes la misma
        dignidad de cualquier otro ser humano que vive en nuestra tierra! Y ahora, mi
        querido amigo judío, ve con la protección de Dios, y no olvides nunca de
        sentirte orgulloso de ser judío».

        Relata el autor del artículo que, tras esta declaración hecha en alta voz, el
        Papa alzó la mano para darle la acostumbrada bendición pero «se detuvo, sonrió,
        y con los dedos me tocó la cabeza y me invitó a levantarme», dado que estaba
        arrodillado.

        Pío XII pronunció estas palabras en el curso de una audiencia en la que estaban
        presentes cardenales, obispos y también un grupo de soldados alemanes.

        Este importante testimonio ha sido descubierto en el Archivo de la Universidad
        de Tel Aviv por William Doino, colaborador de la revista estadounidense «Inside
        the Vatican» y autor de una bibliografía razonada en el libro «The Pius War:
        Responses to the Critics of Pius XII» (La guerra de Pío: Respuestas a las
        críticas a Pío XII), en 2004, de Lexington Books.

        Según William Doino, «este testimonio es relevante porque muestra la atención y
        el gran amor con el que el pontífice miraba a los judíos, además de reafirmar
        el rechazo de las teorías raciales nazis que señalaban a los judíos como los
        últimos de la tierra».

        Sobre este asunto, William Doino publicará en el número de diciembre de «Inside
        The Vatican» una información completa sobre la copia original de «The Jerusalem
        Post».

        ZS06111608

  • http://www.clarespark.com/ Clare Spark

    Someone should tell Bill O’Reilly to stop blaming the Jews for “killing Jesus.” He is not keeping up with Catholic history.

    • defcon 4

      Has BS O’Reilly actually said this on camera? I always thought him a scumbag.

    • southwood

      Who then did kill Christ if not the Jews ? It was the Jews who conspired against him. It was a Jew who betrayed him. It was the Jews who delivered him up to Pilate. When Pilate tried to release Jesus, the Jews shouted “Away with him, crucify him!” In Acts chapter 3 verses 14 and 15 Peter says to the Jews, “But ye denied the Holy One and the Just, and desired a murderer to be granted unto you; and killed the Prince of life.” And I am no fan of Bill O’Reilly. I think you have swallowed the PC revisionist garbage.

      • defcon 4

        The Romans, the people who invented crucifixion and it did it often and well. Who was Peter? A southern baptist? What was he doing in Jerusalem? Was he on vacation? What were any of Jesus’ apostles doing in Jerusalem?

        • southwood

          So you are calling Peter the apostle a liar ? That’s chutzpah ok.

  • Phil Raimi

    Pope John Paul was a wonderful friend of the Jewish people, going back to his days in Poland when he was a young priest. This was quite a noble and courageous position in those days for a Catholic clergyman. Believe me, based on the stories my father told me about growing up Jewish in Poland before the Holocaust decimated his family and his hometown, the Poles on the whole were no friends of the Jewish people in those days. They were mostly rabid anti-Semites. My father, with his blond hair and blue eyes, road the trains as a teen, disguised as a gentile to smuggle food to his family in the ghetto in his town. While he was doing so, he and had to curse Jews and stutter so the Poles couldn’t pick up his accent and identify him as a Jew.The Pope’s visit to Israel several years ago was incredible and absolutely memorable. I was very sad when John Paul II passed away – truly a wonderful, godly man. He deserves to be sainted by the Catholic Church because that’s exactly what he was – a saint.

  • SCREW SOCIALISM

    If anyone should be a Saint, it should be Pope John XXIII.

    G-D BLESS Pope John XXIII FOREVER.

  • defcon 4

    It’s nice to be reading something positive about the CC in this day and age, because I’m used to reading/hearing the vilest spew from the enemedia.

    • southwood

      Do you not realize the Vatican is the major player in the New World Order ?

      • defcon 4

        Considering how they’re regularly demonized (even unfairly) by the enemedia I find that hard to believe.

        • southwood

          “demonized” ? Really ? I think you will find that they are portrayed in a very favourable light by the media, only it is impossible to ignore the blatant child abuse by priests. The evangelical Christians, on the other hand, ARE regularly demonized as being intolerant bigots. Hollywood rarely portrays a Romanist priest in a bad light. Look back through their films where a priest is portrayed and you will rarely see him shown as other than a benevolent good man. “On the Waterfront” and “Boy’s Town” are two well known examples. But protestant clergy are shown as corrupt narrow minded fools as in “Inherit the Wind”.

          The folks on this thread are showing how deceived they are. Pius XII is praised on this thread yet in Yad Vashem he is reckoned to have done the minimum he could to help the Jews in WWII. Do some research. It’s all out there; on the web; in many books on WWII and the relevant popes.

          • dqban22

            In 1937, Pius XI published the Encyclical “Mit Brennender Sorge,” stating that Catholics must never be anti-Semite.

            On March 14, 1937, before it was fashionable to denounce the German Führer as a villain and long before the creation of the concentration camps and the gas chambers, Pius XI, ably seconded by his Secretary of State, wrote the Encyclical “Mit Brennender Sorge” meaning “with burning anxiety”. It dealt with the nazi threat to racial minorities and specifically the Jews addressing the Encyclical directly to the German
            people. The Encyclical exhorted that Catholics must never be anti-Semitic because “we are all Semites spiritually” and ought to hold the Jewish people in high regard accordingly. The Encyclical exposed to the world the III Reich’s persecution of the Catholic Church as well as the incompatibility between the principles of the National Socialism and those of the Catholic faith. The German government prohibited the entrance of the Encyclical to the country and it became necessary to smuggle it into Germany under the nose of the ruthless Gestapo. On Sunday March 21, The Encyclical was read from 12,000 Catholic pulpits across Germany. As a result, the Nazi’s campaign of innuendoes against The Church as well as the persecution of Catholics worsened.

            The German Catholic hierarchy thanked Pope Pius XI for the letter, which strongly condemned both, racism and anti-Semitism. The Pope pointed to Cardinal Pacelli saying that it was he who had been responsible for the Encyclical. It was th Secretary of State, who asked the German Cardinal Faulhaber to submit a draft text, which he amended carefully. Pacelli also bore the burden of its defense when the Encyclical was the subject of strong German diplomatic protests; he did so personally, not by
            delegation.

            The Vatican condemns Communism with the Encyclical “Divini Redemptori” in 1937

            Pius XI and his Secretary of State were following the
            Magisterium of the Church when they published on March 19, 1937, the Encyclical “Divini Redemptori.” It was a most comprehensive and devastating condemnation of Communism as “intrinsically perverse.” Already Pius IX, as early as 1846, pronounced in the Encyclical “Qui pluribus,” a solemn condemnation of Communism “that infamous doctrine which is absolutely contrary to natural law itself, and if once adopted would utterly destroy the rights, the property and possessions of all men, and even society itself.” Pope Leo XIII in his Encyclical “Quod apostolici muneri,” defined communism as “the fatal plague that insinuates itself into the very marrow of human society only to bring about its ruin.” Pius XI and Pius XII were highly active, energetic and zealous opponents of totalitarianism and oppression in every form-for them, National Socialism and Communism were both intrinsically evil.

            Pope Pius XII’s first Encyclical, “Summi Pontificatus”, in
            1939, attacks Nazism and Communism-Pius XII’s first encyclical on October 27, 1939, “Summi Pontificatus” reiterated the attack on the German regime and the Gestapo was ordered to prevent its distribution.
            In it, the Pope declared his position “against exacerbated nationalism, the idolatry of the state, totalitarianism, racism, the cult of brutal force, contempt of international agreements”, against all the characteristics of Hitler’s political system; he laid the responsibility for the scourge of the war on these aberrations. The Allies airdropped 88,000 copies of the Encyclical over Germany.

          • defcon 4

            Relative to how the amoral assholes in the enemedia portray islam, the CC is demonized, for nothing at all.

          • dqban22

            TRUTH ON THE JEWS CHILDREN SAVED BY CATHOLICS DURING THE HOLOCAUST VS THE DIFAMATORY CAMPAIGN AGAINST PIUS XII AND THE CHURCH

            NY Times Wrong: Pius XII Saved Jews [Between 700K To 860K Jews Saved]

            Newsmax.com ^ | Jan. 27, 2005 | P. Thierry

            On Jan. 9, 2005 the New York Times published a prominent article entitled “Saving Jewish Children, But At What Cost?” in which it accuses the Vatican and Pope Pius XII of having given instructions not to allow Jewish
            children who had been sheltered by Catholics during the war to return to their own families.

            With regard to the Jewish Children who, during the German occupation, have been entrusted to Catholic institutions and families and whom Jewish institutions are reclaiming to be entrusted to them, the decision that had the approval of the Holy Father was that the Jewish
            children had to be returned to their Jewish families.

            Thus, the accusation of the New York Times that the directive contains an order not to allow Jewish Children who had been baptized Catholic to go home to their own parents is baseless and defamatory in nature.

            The Chief Rabbi of Palestine, Rabbi Isaak Herzog, in a letter addressed to Pius XII in March 1946 he writes, “The people of Israel deeply remember with most profound gratitude the assistance given by the Holy See to the suffering people during the Nazi persecution,” and he concludes with an invocation “God willing, history will remember that when everything was dark for our people, His Holiness lit a light of hope for them.”

            Indeed this was the letter of Rabbi Herzog in which he expressed the desire to Pius XII that Jewish children saved by the Church be given back to Jewish institutions and which triggered the decision of the Holy Office. The full text of Rabbi Herzog’s letter is available at
            http://www.vaticanfiles.net/intelligence3.htm.

            Also, Dr. Leon Kubowitzki (later, Aryeh Kubovy), the Secretary General of the World Jewish Congress, also visited the Vatican to discuss the same subject. In its official report on the matter, the Congress wrote: “It was
            essential to obtain the assent of the Catholic Church to the release of those it had sheltered during the years of persecution. …On September 21, 1945, he [Kubowitzki] was received in private audience by Pope Pius XII and, while expressing the gratitude of the Jewish people for having mercifully hidden many little victims of German ferocity, he pleaded that no obstacles be placed in the way of their return to the community of their perished fathers. He was given assurance that a most humane policy would be followed in this delicate matter.” (Unity in Dispersion–The Story of the World Jewish Congress [New York: Institute of Jewish Affairs of the World Jewish Congress 1948] p. 303).

            A number of cases are known where Pope Pius XII had to intervene personally to make sure his instructions were followed. They show a thoughtful, humane man who respected the fundamental rights of Jewish children and their parents, proof directly contradicting the recent allegations against the wartime Pope.

            Leokadia Jaromirska, a Polish-Catholic rescuer, wanted to retain a Jewish girl she had protected during the Holocaust. Her custody struggle is told in the important book by Peter Hellman Avenue of the Righteous (New York: Atheneum, 2004). Describing her efforts to keep the female child, Bogusia, even after her father, Jonisz, had survived and come back to retrieve her, the author writes: “In a last ditch effort at getting authoritative backing on her side, Leokadia wrote a letter to Pius XII asking for his wisdom on the subject of Bogusia. In less than a month came an answer that struck down all
            hope. She was instructed by the Pope to return the child to its father. If she were to keep the child by force or
            stealth, in the end she would regret it, since, at school or elsewhere, the child would eventually learn the truth. It
            was her duty as a Catholic not only to give back the child, but to do it with good will and in friendship.” (p.237)

            In the New York Times Book Review, the book was described as worth reading just for the compelling story of Leokadia Jaromirska and the Jewish baby she named Bogusia. Apparently, the Times editors and writers who wrote the attack piece against Pius XII do not read their own Book Review.

            In another case, reported by Sister Grazia Loparco, Professor at the Pontifical Academy for Educational Sciences, a Jewish mother had found refuge in 1944 with her two children at the Convent of the Franciscan Missionary Sister of Marie on the via Balduina. After some time she asked that she and her children be baptized. The sacrament was given to them at their request in the Church of Santa Maria delle Grazie.

            In 1945 after the liberation of Rome, the mother left the convent leaving her children in safekeeping with the nuns. In November 1947 she returned to the convent with a representative of a Jewish organization for children and asked for the children. She had had a change of heart and had returned to the Jewish faith.

            Not knowing what to do, the Sisters asked advise to the Vicariate of Rome, which in turn transmitted the request to the Secretariate of State. The response was immediate. Within 24 hours an audience was arranged with the Pope to discuss this specific case. Not the case of a forced baptism or a baptism administered against the order of the Church (the Church had given instructions during the war not to baptize the
            Jewish children entrusted to them) but the case of a baptism requested explicitly by the mother for her and her children.

            How did Pope Pius XII answer? He ordered that the children be immediately
            reunited with their mother (Volume 1, 2004, Rivista di Storia della Chiesa in
            Italia (Vita e Pensiero)).

            The following question comes automatically to mind. If Pius XII personally ordered the reunion of Jewish children with their relatives, how is it possible
            that diverse, if not opposite orders where given in His name? Dr. Leon Kubowitzki, the Secretary General
            of the World Jewish Congress, may have the last word on this matter: almost twenty years after he met with Pius XII, and was promised help, he delivered a public lecture in Tel Aviv, on February 7, 1964, at which he declared: “I can state now that I hardly know of a single case where Catholic institutions refused to return Jewish children.” (Cited by Pinchas Lapide in Three Popes and the Jews [New York: Hawthorn Books] p. 210).

            In this book, Lapide, after years of research and personal testimonies that he had amassed, concluded that Pius XII “was instrumental is saving at least 700,000, but probably as many as 860,000, Jews from certain death at Nazi hands.” (p. 214)

    • dqban22

      It is absolutely preposterous to accuse the Catholic Church of anti-Semitism during the Holocaust or of not doing enough. No other World organization, not even the American Jews, did more to save the Jews on Nazi occupied Europe. Thanks to His Holiness Pius XII more than one
      million Jews were saved from the gas chambers, while the British ordered to close the entrance of the fleeing Jews to Palestine and Franklin D. Roosevelt, although he knew of the existence of the extermination camps, he not only rejected the idea to bomb the railroad lines to the concentration camps, but he although denied entrance in the EE.UU. to the Jews who tried to flee the Nazis….Remember the Saint Louis… Less than 10,000 Jews were allowed to find refuge in United States during the Holocaust.

      This quite a contrast with the attitude of the Spanish dictator Generalisimo Franco who recognized as Spanish citizens all the
      Sephardic Jews as descendants of the Jews expelled from Spain in 1492, and opened to them its territories, even though there were 20 German division at the French border menacing enter Spain in order to take Gibraltar. More than 60,000 were saved thanks to Franco’s orders.

      As Jeno Levai, the foremost scholar of the Holocaust in Hungary, said of Pius XII that it was “a particularly regrettable irony that the one person in all 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.”

      Moshe Sharett, Israel’s first Foreign Minister, and later the second Prime Minister, met Pius XII in 1945 and said later: “I told him (Pius XII) that my first duty was to thank; him, and through him, the Catholic Church, on behalf of the Jewish people, for all they had done in various countries to rescue Jews, to save the children and Jews in general.”

      To those seeking the truth, what a better witness than the of Albert Einstein, the great Jewish physicist, who had first hand experience of the horrors of Nazism? In 1944 he said: “Being a lover of freedom, when the Nazi revolution came in Germany, I looked to the universities to defend it, but the universities were immediately silenced. Then I looked to the great editors of newspapers, but they, like the universities were silenced in a few short weeks. Then I looked to individual writers…they too were mute. Only the Church,” Einstein concluded, “stood squarely across the path of Hitler’s campaign for suppressing the truth…I never had any special interest in the Church before, but now I feel great affection
      and admiration…and am forced thus to confess that what I once despised, I now praise unreservedly.”

  • Jacob Greenwood

    KEYNOTE GUEST ADDRESS ON YOM KIPPER, OCT 14, 2003 TO CUBAN-HEBREW CONGREGATION IN MIAMI BEACH, FL

    The paintings which are out on exhibition are only part of a
    major exhibition I gave in 2003 at the request of the largest group of
    Holocaust survivors here in the United States that live in Skokie, IL. When
    they asked me if I could paint more of Torah than just a couple moments.

    What I brought here to the synagogue; these are memories. Memories
    that we should all share. We’re the only people on earth who remembered Adam.
    We’re the only people on earth who remembered that ten generations later, when the earth had become almost as bad as it is today, or similar, that there was a
    Great Flood. And a family. A man and his family that God took to survive and
    birth us all

    And we’re the only people on the earth who know that Abraham
    was a first-born. As Noah said, “Shem is my first born”. And after Shem, he
    gave birth to a first-born male . We KNOW that we are from Noah, that we’re
    from Shem. We even say his name . We say “SHEM-A Yisrael”, DON’T we?

    We remember these things. We are the Earth. We’re what
    brings freedom and joy to this planet. People might bring us misery, but it’s
    our indomitable spirits that survive. So
    I brought you, “Noah”, and “Noah and his Three Sons”, one of which who had a
    genetic problem it seems…he had the blood of Cain in him. He was ROTTEN. We’re
    still dealing with him today. These are the enemies of civilized people, are
    from Ham, of his first-born son.

    But for the rest of us, we’re from Europe, the second son of
    Noah. We’re from the lower half of the earth, from Shem, the first-born of
    Noah. And we should remember that the whole earth KNEW the law. The whole earth
    believed in Elohim, the invisible God that created all things. That it’s a way
    of life. You don’t HAVE to be forced to sit in a room and recite words. You
    LIVE those words. You live that life every day.

    And that’s why the painting of “Abraham Destroying Idols”
    was a very important moment for me to depict. It’s not a graven image, its Cubism,
    it’s not made to look real, not meant to be worshipped. But it is meant to be
    remembered.

    His father, Terah, was “screwing around” with a bad guy in
    Babylon, an Assyrian who had helped demolish most of the law of Mesopotamia for
    probably the twelfth time since about 3,000 BC. And Abraham got mad at his
    father. He said, “You’re making ME learn everything the first-born learns. You
    learned it. But why are you making this guy statues so that he can pray and say
    ‘this is God’? WHY are you DOING that?”

    Well, Abraham took care of that problem. And by the time he
    was an early man, he was betrothed to a girl who came from the second son of
    Noah, from the house of Japh, which was in Haran. We hear that place often in
    our Torah. We hear it for Jacob and
    Isaac and Abraham. We hear the mixture
    of the blood of the families of the earth.

    And Abraham was then told by God, “Well your wife might
    think she’s gonna live in Ur” which was like New York back then. That was the
    city with the stores and the waterfront on the river. It was the seat of all
    the best of civilization in Mesopotamia and the world, and he said, “Honey, I’m
    sorry, we’re moving to the desert. You’re really gonna like it. So, Sarah put
    up with it. Heheh.”

    But they did raise a nation according to what God had asked
    them to do. To number like the stars on the land. And our Diaspora, I wonder, I
    think it was as much the wisdom of God to disperse people with morality, with
    kind hearts, with laws – through the whole world—to influence the whole world,
    than it was to be a punishment.

    I think the Jewish people, we are the punishment on the bad
    people of the earth. So, I look at this Day of Atonement, and I think of it in
    joy. No matter where we are on the
    earth, WE SPEAK to the Creator of All Things. We LOVE the Creator of All
    Things. We remember, together, around the world, and we know, that we’re ONE
    family, sometimes loving, sometimes dysfunctional, but we’re an IMMENSE family.
    We incorporate the four corners of the earth.

    And that brings me to the end of what I wanted to say, which
    is actually the beginning.

    When The Flood ended, and Noah’s boat, the Ark, was firm on
    dry ground for a matter of a week or so, he disembarked, and he climbed a high
    hill. He stacked rocks. And there were animals born on the Ark during that
    period. And he killed a lamb, and he had a barbeque, which we call burnt offerings,
    and he made a dinner of Thanksgiving for his family.

    And I think that’s really the message for these High
    Holidays. That we ALL have to say “Thank You”. Thank you that we ARE. That we
    KNOW what we know. That we have everything we have. And to remember to share it, to love it, and
    be joyous.

    Thank You.

  • motorsportsnz

    What is still not comprehended is the sabbath day. As it so happens today people who say they love the Jewish yet say they are followers of Yeshua still show their outward characteristic behaviour as unbelievers of Yeshua.
    38000 denominations of the one man Yeshuas church worshipping on a day of sun worship saying they love Yeshua Jesus but by their actions denie the truth. If we say Yeshua is going to rule on this earth for a thousand years in the 1000 years after the great tribulation and this will be held on a sabbath Saturday how is it we see such anger at honouring this day Of rest set at creation, and I blessed the seventh day and rested from all my work says The Lord.
    By your actions you dishonour The Lord your God.

  • southwood

    This article ignores certain points regarding the Vatican and the two popes who were so “wonderful”.

    1. The Vatican II document “Lumen Gentium” refers to the Muslims as being part of God’s plan of salvation. The papacy does not regard Christ as the only way to the Father, even although Christ said, “no one comes to the Father but by me”. The papal organized gatherings at Assisi unite many world religions, including Judaism, Buddhism, Shamanism and Islam.

    2.The papacy will twist and turn in every direction in order to attract support. They will sympathize with the Palestinians one minute (see pic of John Paul II with Arafat, so enchanted with one another, in link), and the Jews, grudgingly, the next. Now they are even turning to the homosexuals and atheists !

    Look here: http://alamoministries.com/content/english/Antichrist/Fugitive_Pope.html

    Don’t be deceived, folks, the papacy is part of the problem, the major part.

    • defcon 4

      “the major part”? A MILLION people have been slaughtered by muslimes (in the Sudan/Darfur) in the 21st century and muslimes are continuing to persecute, murder, rape and forcibly convert people of other faiths all over the world and the CC is the “major part”? If you believe that, then move to ANY islamic state and you’ll never be bothered by the evil Catholics ever again.

      • southwood

        Your replies are just ridiculous. Just amazing. And you’re an apologist for the most evil organization on the planet.