Pope Francis, the secret archives of the Vatican on the controversial pontificate of Pius XII during the Second world war open. The files to from the 2. March 2020 for researchers will be accessible, as Pope Francis announced in an audience of employees of the archive on Monday.

Pope Pius XII, was from 1939 until his death in 1958, Pope. He was criticised after the war, decisively enough against the Nazi crimes raised the voice and to have about the Holocaust is silence. His defenders argue, however, that under him the Jews were able to find refuge in the Church and the state.

the aim of the Vatican, it is now to get on the way to the beatification of the Italian Pope, an “objective” view of his term of office. Researchers and Jewish associations make for a long time pressure, and that the Vatican makes millions of documents in a fully accessible.

“The Church has no fear of the story, on the contrary, she loves you,” said Francis now – also with a view to criticism that the Vatican does not want to face up to the past. The goal is “reliable and objective” research might be the “shining moments of this Pope, as well as the moments of the greatest difficulty” in the right light and with all reasonable criticism to appear. Pius XII had tried “to keep in times of the greatest darkness and cruelty of the flame of the humanitarian initiatives of wax”.

The prefect of the secret archives, Sergio Pagano, wrote in the Vatican newspaper “L’osservatore Romano”, Pope Pius XII was “too superficial, and criticised”. The research could place him now, “without prejudice and thanks to the new documents” to be realistic. Already under the German Pope Benedict XVI, Opening of the archive had been targeted for 2014 or 2015. This is due to the complex task of “too optimistic,” said Pagano.

the reason for the current announcement is of 80. Anniversary of the election of the Italian, Eugenio Pacelli to the papacy at the 2. In March of 1939. For a long time historians argue about its role and that of the Vatican during the Nazi reign. Finally, Pacelli had been before the war, Pope Ambassador in Munich and Berlin.

The Catholic Church had occurred in the last years of the Weimar Republic as a critic of national socialism. Adolf Hitler wanted the concordat, therefore, with a rich, i.e., a state Church Treaty, their influence weaken.

The Vatican hoped the 1933 agreed concordat – at the time, Pacelli, cardinal Secretary of state, chief Diplomat of the Vatican – was a certain protection of the Catholic Church before the DC circuit. However, it quickly became clear that the Nazi Regime held to the representations. The Pontifical of concern “from March 1937 to write” burning at the time, Pius XI was still in office – condemned the breaches of contract and distanced himself from national socialist ideology. The Jews were not mentioned specifically.

critics, or not enough against the eviction of the Jewish ghetto in Rome and the Deportation of the inhabitants to Auschwitz in the autumn before throwing then Pope Pius XII, to be 1943. His defenders stressed, however, that he had granted Thousands of Jews Sanctuary. They also emphasize that Pope Pius XII, with his cautious policy, wanted to avert dire consequences for Catholics.

rolling the debate was introduced in 1963. At that time, the play “The Deputy” by Rolf Hochhuth was in Berlin for the first time. It is Pius as a cold-hearted diplomat who had been complicit in the death of many Jews.

Against Pius’ beatification, planned by Pope John Paul II for the year 2000, protested Israel and the Central Council of the Jews.

The Israeli government and the Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial welcomed the announced Opening of the archive. The American Jewish Committee (AJC) called the step “for Catholic-Jewish relations is enormously important”. Rabbi David Rosen, International Director for Interreligious Affairs at the AJC, said it was especially important that the experts of the leading Holocaust memorials in Israel and the United States, the records analysed.

need to be clarified Zuroff For the Nazi-hunter, Efraim now two Central questions: “The first is, what information the Vatican in relation to the Holocaust-crimes, and the second is, what time is reached Pius XII this information?”, the Director of the Wiesenthal centre, said. The Pope had representatives in many of the countries in which the Jews were persecuted.

The göttingen-time historian Petra Terhoeven language in the “Kölner Stadt-Anzeiger” of a “long overdue step”. “So it is finally possible to make all the claims about Pius XII. on a factual basis, and the long-disputed questions of source-based answer: What the Pope knew about the extermination of the Jews? Why has he done about it?” The current practice of the Vatican to grant only selected researchers access to Files, particularly those who were entrusted with the process for the beatification of Pius XII, calling it an unworthy secrecy.