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

John Connelly


In 1965 the second one Vatican Council declared that God loves the Jews. prior to that, the Church had taught for hundreds of years that Jews have been cursed by means of God and, within the Nineteen Forties, in most cases stored silent as Jews have been slaughtered by means of the Nazis. How did an establishment whose knowledge is related to be unchanging adopt essentially the most huge, immense, but undiscussed, ideological swings in glossy history?

The radical shift of Vatican II grew out of a buried background, a theological fight in primary Europe within the years ahead of the Holocaust, while a small staff of Catholic converts (especially former Jew Johannes Oesterreicher and previous Protestant Karl Thieme) fought to maintain Nazi racism from coming into their newfound church. via a long time 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 complicated element of Catholic background. Their good fortune got here no longer via appeals to morality yet really from a rediscovery of missed parts of scripture.

From Enemy to Brother illuminates the baffling silence of the Catholic Church through the Holocaust, exhibiting how the traditional instructing of deicide-according to which the Jews have been condemned to endure until eventually they became to Christ-constituted the Church's basically language to discuss the Jews. As he explores the method of theological swap, 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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