Monday, April 25, 2005

 

Setting the record straight on the new Pope

Just setting the record straight on the new Pope's involvement with the Hitler Youth. His family were not pro-Hitler, they were not pro-Nazi. Benedict's brother Georg has found himself in an uneviable position in the past few days--that of having to defend his brother against nasty charges of pro-Nazism. The Chicago Tribune has a lengthy article on this subject, but I'll just post a small bit here:

Joseph Ratzinger, 78, has written about his childhood during the rise of Adolf Hitler. He always acknowledged that in 1941, when the Nazis demanded membership, he joined a Hitler Youth group. Georg Ratzinger explained that he and Joseph, who realized early on that they wanted "a life at the altar," were raised in a home where Hitler was despised, in the pine-covered hills of Bavaria.

"My parents viewed him intensely as an enemy," Ratzinger said. "From the beginning, they saw him as an enemy. They thought he was anti-Catholic and anti-Christian, anti-religion." Their father was a police officer whose dislike of the policies of National Socialism spurred the family to move from village to village in southeast Germany. The family eventually settled in Traunstein, a Catholic stronghold near Munich.

The article also states that Joseph Ratzinger never fired a shot during the War, and continues:

Georg Ratzinger has allowed himself a few judgments this past news-filled week. "Anybody who writes such a thing [that Joseph Ratzinger, now Pope Benedict XVI, was a willing particpant in Hitler's regime] must need something to write," Ratzinger said, sighing about the most sensational headlines. "And anyone who writes that . . . doesn't understand the times as they were."

Read the entire article here: Yahoo! News - Pope's family saw Hitler as enemy

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