Aug 10, 2005 / 22:00 pm
While many recent years have sought to align Pope Pius XII and in fact, the Catholic Church as a whole, with Adolf Hitler and the Nazi Holocaust, one Jewish author is seeking to vindicate the late pontiff as a friend of the Jews who helped protect and save many lives.
Rabbi David G. Dalin, a professor of History and Political Science at Florida’s Ave Maria University and author of the new book, The Myth of Hitler's Pope: How Pope Pius XII Rescued Jews from the Nazis says that not only did Pope Pius protect and defend the Jews during World War II, but that there has been a tradition of papal support for Jewish people since at least the fourth century--a claim that flies in the face of much modern speculation.
"It is an abominable slander” he said, “to spread blame that belongs to Hitler and the Nazis to a pope who was a friend of the Jews."
He also points out that there is ample evidence that the Pope personally sheltered nearly 5,000 Jews in the Vatican and nearby monasteries and convents during the Nazi occupation of Rome.