Many Americans say the Jews killed Jesus, but it would be the same as Europeans saying the Americans killed our compatriots in World War II or they killed the Afghanistan and the Iraqis and the Iranians and the Vietnamese and the Koreans and so on. It were some Jews and other people present in Jerusalem at that time who were agitated by the Pharisees and certain Jewish leaders, but not by all the Jews, who also saw in Jesus one of their own.
Also the new Pope is aware it would be better if more Christians started to investigate the Jewish roots of Christianity and the Christian flowering of Judaism.
“I understand it is a challenge, a hot potato, but it is possible to live as brothers.”Francis’ statement seems to go further than his predecessor, St. John Paul II, who made headlines in 1986 as the first pope to visit Rome’s main synagogue and declared Jews to be the “elder brothers” of the Christian faith.
“Every day, I pray with the Psalms of David. My prayer is Jewish, then I have the Eucharist, which is Christian,”the Argentine pontiff added.
Too many Christians do not use the Old Testament, but it was the main part of Jesus his teaching. At that time there was only the Old Testament which was brought to the beleivers in the One God, which was the Divine Creator, God of Adam, God of Abraham and the God of Israel, God His people.
Those Jews are still God His people, we may never forget that.
Certain right-wing Christians in their denial of the Jewish connection even go so far to deny the Christians would not have killed many of those people of God. A denial of the Holocaust the pope criticizes as “madness.”
|Deutsch: Pius XII., Glückwunschschreiben zum 100. Jubiläum des Pilger in Speyer (Photo credit: Wikipedia)|
Some Jews have accused Pius, who ruled from 1939 to 1958, of turning a blind eye to the Holocaust. The controversy has put a strain on Catholic-Jewish relations for decades.
Francis said he was concerned about
“everything which has been thrown at poor Pius XII,”while stressing that he sheltered Jews in the convents of Rome and other Italian cities, as well as the popes’ summer residence in Castel Gadolfo. Strange though that the Catholic Church did not come sooner with proof of such actions. We do know about nuns and priests who took all possibilities to bring Jews in safety. Many also told lies to the German soldiers to protect others. Their concious may have got very harsh times. but how was the concious of pope Pius XII?
The Vatican says Pius worked behind the scenes to save thousands of Jews and did not speak out more forcefully for fear that his words could have led to more deaths of both Jews and Christians at the hands of the Nazis
Pope Francis warns us to be careful, all being able to make mistakes.
"I don't want to say that Pius XII did not make any mistakes - I myself make many - but he has to be seen in the context of that era. For example, was it better for him not to speak out so that more Jews were not killed, or that he speak out?"he said and added that Pius XII ordered the Church to hide many Jews in the convents of Rome and other Italian cities, that he sheltered Jews in the papal summer residence south of Rome and that 42 children of Jews and other refugees were born in his apartments there.
Francis added that he breaks out in an “existential rash” when he hears people speak against Pius and the church’s wartime record while ignoring inaction by the Allies fighting against Nazi Germany or forgetting the responsibility of the great wartime powers.
“Did you know that they knew perfectly well the rail network used by the Nazis to take the Jews to the concentration camps? They had photographs,”
“But they did not bomb these rail lines. Why? It would be nice if we spoke a little bit about everything.”Already in the 1930ies English and Americans did know about certain plans of the Germans, but they did not find it appropriate to react then, when there was still time to prtect further escalation.
Last month, Francis visited the Yad Vashem memorial to Holocaust victims in Jerusalem. The Yad Vashem's website, addressing the issue of the allies' activity during the war, says:
"In practice, no military initiatives were taken to prevent or delay the extermination."While some historians have argued those train lines should have been bombed, other historians note the allies were losing planes and airmen at such a high rate, and the lasting effects of the bombing of those train lines would have been so slight, that bombing them made no military or humanitarian sense.
Jewish groups have asked Francis and his predecessors to freeze the process that could lead to sainthood for Pius until the all the World War Two era archives are opened to historians, saying Catholic-Jewish relations could be harmed if the process moved ahead.
Speaking to reporters on the plane returning from Jerusalem last month, Francis said the sainthood cause for Pius was stalled because he had not been credited with performing a miracle, which Church rules require, suggesting it was not stalled because of any outside pressure.
Francis also used that interview to condemn anti-Semitism. He reportedly said it is a continuing problem that was primarily seen in right-wing European political parties which still continue to try to bring a screen in front of the people by ignoring the facts of history like the holocaust.
Francis confirmed that he intends to open the Vatican archives wartime collection.
"They will shed a lot of light,"
the Pope said.
During Friday’s interview with the Barcelona daily, Francis was also asked about his own security, saying he refused to travel in a bulletproof “sardine can” vehicle because he wants to mingle with ordinary people.
“It is true that anything can happen, but let’s face it, at my age I have nothing to lose,”the 77-year-old pontiff said. The way he can now be in contact with young and old is much more important. Such a personal contact can do the Catholic Church some good to reboost it again.
So Pius XII, by inclination and training, a diplomat, had about four years in office (in a divided and antisemitic Vatican) before the Nazis took over Northern Italy and installed their own racial laws.
The "Hitler's Pope" meme may have originated, and at any rate was spread, as part of a Communist disinformation campaign.