Pius XII - Cause For Canonization

Cause For Canonization

The Testament of Pope Pius XII was published immediately after his death. Pope Pius XII's cause of canonization was opened on 18 November 1965 by Pope Paul VI. In May 2007, the congregation recommended that Pius XII should be declared Venerable. Pope Benedict XVI did so on 19 December 2009, simultaneously making the same declaration in regard to Pope John Paul II.

For Venerable status The Congregation for the Causes of Saints certifies the "heroic virtues" of the candidate. Making Pius XII Venerable met with various responses, most centred on the papal words and actions during World War II. Benedict's signature on the Decree of Heroic Virtue was regarded by some as a public relations blunder, though acceptance of Pius XII as a saviour of Europe's Jews is regarded as 'proof of fidelity to the Church, the pope and the Tradition' by neoconservative Catholic groups. On the other hand, Rabbi Marvin Hier, founder and dean at the Simon Wiesenthal Center said, "...there would be a great distortion of history" if Pius XII were canonized. Rabbi Jeremy Lawrence, the head of Sydney's Great Synagogue, said: "How can one venerate a man who ... seemed to give his passive permission to the Nazis as the Jews were prized from his doorstep in Rome?".

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