Wow! Cecil, I just read the achive column “Who was the worst Catholic saint?” I was amazed that someone who tries to deliver “the Straight Dope” to questions could stumble so badly by referencing a book that is so historically inaccurate and biased.
Here is the quote:
"An attempt to do likewise (declare “blessed”) for Pius XII was postponed over protests that he had done nothing to save the Jews during World War II. (For a particularly harsh indictment see John Cornwell’s 1999 book Hitler’s Pope: The Secret History of Pius XII.) The question remains controversial and I won’t attempt to settle it, but I notice Pius XII’s defenders often fall back on the argument that speaking out would only have made things worse–as if things could possibly have gotten much worse than the Holocaust. Easy to say when you’re not the one on the hot seat, I guess, but there comes a point when caution looks like cowardice. I’m just glad this guy’s not a saint yet. "
This is shaping up to being a modern urban myth. Really, Cecil I like your column because it supplies me with source material to reply to people who bring up conspiracy theories and claims of hoaxes. I hope you will do more research on this and give your readers “The Straight Dope” on Pius XII.
The following excerpt was taken from the website of the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights. Other good articles can be found there (http://www.catholicleague.org/pius/framemain.htm)
THE TRUTH ABOUT POPE PIUS XII
by Sister Margherita Marchione. Ph.D.
Pope Pius XII was not a German collaborator nor was he pro-Nazi. Neither was he inactive nor silent. …
On the Church and the Holocaust
Excerpts from books and periodicals that have covered this subject …