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Pius XII heads to sainthood

Pope Pius XII, who was criticized for turning a blind eye to the Holocaust as wartime leader of the Catholic Church, was placed on the path to sainthood.A group of 15 bishops and cardinals known as the Congregation for the Causes of Saints voted Tuesday to approve the beatification of Pius. The current pope, Benedict XVI, must approve, and two miracles must be attributed to the wartime pope.Pius XII’s wartime record was the source of a recent dispute between the Vatican and Yad Vashem. The Vatican ambassador to Jerusalem threatened to boycott the memorial’s Yom Hashoah ceremony unless a passage saying that Pius “abstained from signing the Allied declaration condemning the extermination of the Jews” and “maintained his neutral position throughout the war” was removed from an exhibit.The Vatican says it has evidence that Pius quietly intervened on behalf of Jews, but still blocks access to Vatican archives from that period.

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