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Pius XII, a Necessary Bridge to Reach Vatican II
A little before Pope Francis opened the Vatican archives in response to an insistent demand of the Jews, L'Osservatore Romano published on its front page a news report about Pius XII.

In it journalist Andrea Tornielli summarizes some main points of Pope Pacelli's life to conclude that he was a necessary bridge to reach Vatican II. It is an article so concise and to-the-point that we decided to make it accessible for the files of our readers.

Below, we offer in navy font a translation from the Italian part of the article marked in green, followed by a photocopy of the original news report as it appeared in L'Osservatore Romano's March 3, 2019 issue.

Pius XII ‘Bridge’ between Two Epochs

... But a more serene and profound judgment of his pontificate helps us to understand how Pope Pacelli, with his decisions and his magisterium, was a bridge between one epoch and the other in the ambit of the Church. In 1952, it was he who, during the Cold War, was the first to update the traditional Christian distinction between error and the one who errs in the face of Communism.

Pope Pacelli published very important doctrinal documents and contributed to developments that were consecrated by Vatican II, becoming its most quoted Pope: He opened Bible study to the application of the historical-critical method, upheld the liturgical movement, and reformed the rites of Holy Week.

He took into consideration the hypothesis of evolution; opened responsible paternity and maternity to natural methods; internationalized the College of Cardinals, and in 1946 made the largest number of new Cardinals in History, remaining so for 55 years.

He canonized – compared to previous ceremonies – the greatest number of women, more than all his predecessors and successors.

Pius 12 prepared Vatican II


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