From Enemy to Brother: The Revolution in Catholic Teaching on the Jews, 1933-1965

By John Connelly

In 1965 the second one Vatican Council declared that God loves the Jews. earlier than that, the Church had taught for hundreds of years that Jews have been cursed via God and, within the Forties, as a rule saved silent as Jews have been slaughtered through the Nazis. How did an establishment whose knowledge is expounded to be unchanging adopt essentially the most huge, immense, but undiscussed, ideological swings in sleek history?

The radical shift of Vatican II grew out of a buried heritage, a theological fight in significant Europe within the years earlier than the Holocaust, while a small workforce of Catholic converts (especially former Jew Johannes Oesterreicher and previous Protestant Karl Thieme) fought to maintain Nazi racism from getting into their newfound church. via many years of engagement, extending from debates in educational journals, to renowned schooling, to lobbying within the corridors of the Vatican, this not going duo overcame the main troublesome point of Catholic heritage. Their good fortune got here now not via appeals to morality yet quite from a rediscovery of missed parts of scripture.

From Enemy to Brother illuminates the baffling silence of the Catholic Church through the Holocaust, displaying how the traditional educating of deicide-according to which the Jews have been condemned to undergo till they grew to become to Christ-constituted the Church's in basic terms language to discuss the Jews. As he explores the method of theological switch, John Connelly strikes from the speechless Vatican to these Catholics who endeavored to discover a brand new language to talk to the Jews at the eve of, and within the shadow of, the Holocaust.

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He suggested Austrians to vote for Anschluss as a “national responsibility” and affi xed the phrases “Heil Hitler” prior to his signature, a gesture that enraged the Vatican. Innitzer’s makes an attempt at appeasement accomplished not anything. within the fall of 1938, Nazi rowdies entered his place of dwelling and destroyed furnishings and home windows whereas his aids saved the cardinal in a secure position. The Nazi celebration geared up an incredible demonstration opposed to the Catholic Church in Vienna, and their Gauleiter Josef Bürckel learn Innitzer’s postcard to Irene Harand whereas tens of millions jeered “Pfui Innitzer” and “Hand over the black puppy.

Leaders of the Catholic adolescence workforce Neuland have been making plans to segregate the “nationally other”—in different phrases, to make separate areas of their association for Jewish converts. all of the error of Bichlmair and “many different Nazi Catholics” got here jointly in discrimination opposed to Jewish converts in the church, Oesterreicher wrote, and that was once the easiest Catholics opposed to Racism and Antisemitism 127 position to assault them. 118 “Would you be so kind,” he requested Thieme, “as to debate in Die Erfüllung the critiques mendacity on the backside of dad Bichlmair’s talk—namely the try and reconcile nationalism with the Church?

For Bloy’s godson Jacques Maritain, the invention of Peterson’s skinny ebook The Church of Jews and Pagans (1934)— a close research of Romans 9–11—was providential, and he wrote a preface for the French variation, which made a deep impact upon French Catholics. fifty one In 1935, Karl Thieme known as Peterson “the maximum residing Catholic theologian. ”52 Peterson have been a super pupil of the major Protestant theologian Adolf Harnack, and used to be additionally with reference to Karl Barth. within the past due Twenties, he very easily held a chair in Protestant theology at Bonn, the place he frequented highbrow circles that 186 From Enemy to Brother integrated Carl Schmitt and Annie Kraus.

Dr. Silvester Braito, O. P. , and Rev. Basilius Lang, O. S. B. (Czechoslovak ia); Prof. Edgar de Bruyne (Belgium); Rev. Charles Devaux, and Stanislas Fumet (France); Rev. Zyrill Fischer, O. F. M. , and Rev. Alois Wildenauer (Austria); Rev. Benoït Lavaud, O. P. (Switzerland); Dr. Eduard Pant (Poland); Rev. Franziskus Stratmann (Germany; Italy), and Rev. Johannes B. Kors, O. P. (Netherlands). The Czechs, major figures in a Catholic highbrow renaissance, have been recognized to Oesterreicher due to his occasional paintings in Bohemian and Moravian seminaries; Pant, Stratmann, and Fischer have been fashionable Germans who attacked Nazism in Dietrich von Hildebrand’s guides; and 154 From Enemy to Brother Kors was once a convert who served as president of the Catholic college in Nijmegen.

Sixty nine maybe Baruteil was once now not graced with powers of mind to determine his personal inconsistency; might be he represented a version of the vaunted skill to carry opposing arguments in one’s brain while. within the many years resulting in international warfare II, a lot of the French Catholic correct resisted the enticements of racism, decisively aided via the Vatican’s 82 From Enemy to Brother condemning of the nationalist motion Française in 1926, and then the guts of gravity inside at the correct shifted to extra average terrain.

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