The Holocaust and Catholic Conscience: Cardinal Aloisius Muench and the Guilt Question in Germany

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The Holocaust and Catholic Conscience: Cardinal Aloisius Muench and the Guilt Question in Germany

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Description

American-born Cardinal Aloisius Muench (1889-1962) was a key figure in German and German-American Catholic responses to the Holocaust, Jews, and Judaism between 1946 and 1959. He was arguably the most powerful American Catholic figure and an influential Vatican representative in occupied Germany and in West Germany after the war. In this carefully researched book, which draws on Muench s collected papers, Suzanne Brown-Fleming offers the first assessment of Muench s legacy and provides a rare glimpse into his commentary on Nazism, the Holocaust, and surviving Jews. She argues that Muench legitimized the Catholic Church s failure during this period to confront the nature of its own complicity in Nazism s anti-Jewish ideology.

The archival evidence demonstrates that Muench viewed Jews as harmful in a number of very specific ways. He regarded German Jews who had immigrated to the United States as “aliens,” he believed Jews to be “in control” of American policy-making in Germany, he fe