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Jun 24, 2022

Pope Orders Online Release of WWII-Era Pius XII Jewish Files

Pope Francis has ordered the online publication of 170 volumes of its Jewish files from the recently opened Pope Pius XII archives, the Vatican announced Thursday, amid renewed debate about the legacy of its World War II-era pope.

The documentation contains 2,700 files of requests for Vatican help from Jewish groups and families, many of them baptized Catholics, so not actually practicing Jews anymore. The files were held in the Secretariat of State’s archives and contain requests for papal intervention to avoid Nazi deportation, to obtain liberation from concentration camps or help finding family members.

The online publication of the files comes amid renewed debate about Pius’ legacy following the 2020 opening to scholars of his archives, of which the “Jews” files are but a small part. The Vatican has long defended Pius against criticism from some Jewish groups that he remained silent in the face of the Holocaust, saying he used quiet diplomacy to save lives.

You can read more in an article by Nicole Winfield published in the Washington Post at: https://wapo.st/3tV0o7R.

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