.- In an interview with the Italian news agency APCOM, Cardinal Jose Saraiva Martins, Prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of the Saints, said the beatification process for Pope Pius XII “is proceeding without problems.”
The Portuguese cardinal said that in March 2005 a first meeting would take place of the committee of historians charged with examining the massive amount of material gathered during the years of preparation for the cause.
The historical review will be followed by theological reviews and later, by reviews by the committee of cardinals.
“The cause of Pope Pacelli continues ahead without problems and has never been stopped, despite the controversy of these days,” the cardinal told APCOM.
“As everyone knows, these are news controversies that have nothing to do with the main work of research,” which is about serious historical study of the complex period in question, the cardinal said.
Father Peter Gumpel, one of the most renowned experts on Pius XII and promoter of the cause, told Italian reporters that “the beatification process is proceeding normally and progressing.”
“It is not true that the process has been slowed down or stopped” because of recent accusations against Pius XII in the Italian media, which have been quickly refuted by historians. “They are absurd reports,” said Father Gumpel.