Saturday, December 19, 2009

Pope Benedict and Venerable Pius XII: Things on my mind Part I

The news is but a few hours old and it is no surprise that already 'Jewish groups' are registering their outrage at the Pope's decision to sign the decree which makes Pius XII Venerable. The reasons why they react in this way are not the point of this post. Its point is that it astonishes me that anyone in his or her right mind would think that Pope Benedict would have done such a thing had he not been certain of facts.

We all know how long, in the normal way, the Vatican takes to dig up relevant records. Does anyone really think that the Supreme Pontiff cannot command that these records be presented for his inspection as and when he wishes? (In any case, there are already enough records in the public domain that militate against the disgraceful smear campaign that has been conducted against Pius XII for decades.) Does anyone really think that Joseph Ratzinger, arguably the most intellectually gifted, cautious and balanced Pope since Pius himself would take risks in this matter? Jewish groups had asked him to delay this decree until THEY had been able to examine the Vatican records. I pray that the more sensible ones among them will realise that the Pope himself has seen them, and THAT IS ENOUGH. To suggest otherwise is to question the integrity of the Pope himself and it is my belief that informed Jews would wish to do no such thing.

Finally, can anyone really imagine that Pope Benedict would want to die with a distorion of the truth upon his conscience, to the endangerment of his own immortal soul and thereby the eventual bringing of the Papacy itself into irredeemable disrepute? And this a man whose entire life has been 'a love affair with the truth'? It does not bear thinking about.

May God bless, defend and strengthen our beloved Holy Father, and may we, whilst it is God's will to keep him with us, listen to him, learn from him and love him.


Anthony Bidgood said...

Considerations of politics should not be allowed to interfere with the Church's evaluation of Her sons and daughters.

There is no automatic progression from being declared to be venerable, it means that we can now, with the Church's authority, 'venerate Pope Pius XII'.

Venerable Louis of Granada (+1588) has not 'progressed' beyond the Church's assessment of him when he was declared venerable.

For anyone interested, who can read German, Sister Pascalina Lehnert's memoirs of Venerable Pius XII is essential.

In Christo,
Anthony Bidgood

Jane said...

Thank you for your comment. I could not agree with you more, which is why I was careful to say that the reason why certain groups react as they do, was not the point of my post. I do my best to eschew politics on my blogs.

Venerable Louis is not the only one, as we well know. Perhaps things may change in his regard, since didn't Venerable Bede wait over a thousand years before being raised to the altars by Leo XIII who also made him the only English Doctor of the Church?

Unfortunately I do not read German but know of Sister Pascalina's work. Do you happen to know whether an English version of her memoirs of Venerable Pius is in the offing? Perhaps it is more likely now!

Best regards,

Anthony Bidgood said...

Dear Jane,

Sister Lehnert's Memoirs are not available in English.

There is a nun, whose name I forget, from the USA who has written extensively on Venerable Pius XII and perhaps this lessens the need for Sister Lehnert's memoirs to be translated.

The Holy Father's declaration on Pope Pius XII proves again how sure-footed he is. Nothing dramatic, nothing rushed but this appears to be part of an overall vision to maintain the barque of Peter on an even keel as it sails further into the deep.

In Christo,

Jane said...

Dear Anthony,

Thank you Anthony. I'll keep an eye out for the American nun and will post anything I find.
The wisdom and surefootedness of our most Holy Father is another point of agreement!

A peaceful and blessed Christmastide to you,

Mane nobiscum, Domine.