Posts Tagged ‘papacy’


James Felak on Pope Pius XII, the Wartime Pontiff

In March of 1939, Eugenio MarĂ­a Giuseppe Pacelli became Pope Pius XII just days before the Nazis invaded Czechoslovakia and months before Germany continued their march into Poland. Prof. James Felak (University of Washington) examines the life and times of Pope Pius XII and explores the controversy surrounding his papacy. Interestingly, we learn that criticism of Pope Pius XII’s actions only emerged two decades after World War II. Prof. Felak discusses the difficult diplomatic and moral situation that Pius XII found himself in during the war, lays out the logic of his actions, and then assesses the overall impact (including his post-war proclamations) of Pius XII’s papacy on the contemporary Church Church.

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Jon M. Sweeney on The Pope Who Quit

How often has a pope willingly resigned from his position? In our interview with Jon Sweeney, we get insight into the life and times of Peter Morrone (a.k.a., Pope Celestine V) who reigned for 15 weeks in 1294 before quitting his post just before Christmas. This fascinating tale of a spiritual hermit who lived a humble life, yet ascended to the papacy in one of the more incredible tales of the Church’s history, reveals the 13th century struggles between the ecclesia spiritualis (spiritual Church) and the ecclesia carnalis (the worldly church of power). It also tells us a great deal about our contemporary religious life.

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