Pius XII paved way for Catholic aid to Jews

October 28, 2013

Re: Susan Zuccotti, "Holocaust expert condemns papal silence in WW2" (WCR, Oct. 14).

I am 85 years old and I have seen and heard much on this subject. I cannot bear to watch or see the atrocities that were done by the Nazi regime; it is too painful and robs me of my peace of mind.

With regards to Pope Pius XII, do you think that he was ignorant of the aid his priests, nuns and monks were providing? If there was no record that you could find showing that Pius XII directed his flock to action in aid of the Jews, does that nullify whatever he did for the Jews in secret?

For Pius XII to maintain plausible deniability about his clerics' providing false identities to Jews, there should be little to no record of it.

Most of the Allied world was already denouncing the actions of the Nazis? How effective would the pope and the Vatican have been had Pius XII also publicly condemned the Nazis?

Rabbis in the past praised the pope's wisdom and cunning by not making his Catholic people yet another target, thereby having more unpersecuted people available to provide aid to Jews.

Surely, you realize that one should keep one's friends close and one's enemies closer. Furthermore, the Church does not toot its own horn; humility requires, as Scripture says, to not let your left hand know what the right hand is doing.

Mona Smith