Monday, August 4, 2014

World War I and the Papacy

From The Catholic Thing:
One person not surprised by the events of August 1914, was the Vicar of Christ, Pope Pius X.  As early as 1912, the pontiff, distraught by European saber-rattling, told his secretary of state, Cardinal Merry del Val, “Le cose vanno male, viene il guerrone.” (“Things are going badly, the Great War is approaching.”)

In an audience with a Brazilian minister in May 1913, Pius said, “You are fortunate, sir, to be going back to your home in Brazil, you will not witness the world-wide war.”

In July 1914, Pius sent a letter to Emperor Franz Joseph pleading that he find a peaceful answer to the Serbian crisis.  When the Austrian ambassador asked the pope to bless the arms of his country, he replied:  “I do not bless arms but peace.” (Read more.)

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