A cowardly lion? : the German Catholic episcopate and the Third Reich (thesis)
Since the publication of Rolf Hochhuth's drama, Der Stellvertreter, in 1963 through the publication of John Cornwell's book, Hitler's Pope, in 1999 and Besier's The Holy See and Hitler's Germany in 2007, the Catholic Church during the Third Reich has received many scathing reviews, including accusations of being blinded to Nazi atrocities because of its opposition to Communism and even conspiring with the Nazis to execute the Holocaust. The image from Friedrich Dürrenmatt's mural included at the end of this paper portrays a similar message. While the opening of the Vatican archives for papacy of Pius XI through 1939 has only continued the debate about the Church?s response to the Nazi regime, an analysis of these documents along with those available about the German episcopate reveal a somewhat more promising conclusion about the bishops' actions and decisions in this period. [From the Conclusion]
Thesis; [FULL-TEXT FREELY AVAILABLE ONLINE]Gregory Clarke Franke is a member of the Class of 2011 of Washington and Lee University.
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