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"The word 'persecution' is applicable in its most exact sense to the treatment meted out by the National Socialists to the Catholic Church in Germany." -from the translator's foreword
Dramatic proof of the Catholic Church's resistance to Hitler's persecution of Catholic individuals and institutions is furnished in this volume, compiled and first published in 1941. It offers an explicit refutation of accusations that the Vatican was complicit in the crimes committed by the Nazis and remained silent against their oppression.
An anonymous German Catholic, well placed within the church hierarchy, used his position to compile documents as evidence of the National Socialist Party's campaign to destroy Catholicism and of the official Vatican response to events and propaganda of the time.
The U.S. national Catholic journal of opinion, Commonweal, featured the book shortly after publication in 1941, saying "Here are the writings and speeches of the Pope and the German hierarchy, the official decrees and instructions of the Government, and the speeches and teachings of the Nazi] Party. The cumulative weight of this testimony is sufficient to establish the German persecution as the worst, because it is the most efficient, of modern times."
Writers at America magazine, the Roman Catholic journal of opinion and commentary, also recognized the importance of this volume soon after it was published: "Complete and devastating . . . The facts are authentic and incontrovertible. The documents are likewise authentic and thoroughly substantiated. . . . To anyone who thinks there is no persecution of the Catholic Church in Germany, we recommend this volume."
Pelican has published several other books of the era that focus on the Nazi campaign to expunge all traces of religion or religious thought from politics through a thorough campaign against all religion. Hitler Came for Niemoeller, by Leo Stein, is an account of Lutheran pastor Martin Niemoeller's eight-year imprisonment and his struggle to preserve the church from the hands of a murderous juggernaut. The Voice of Destruction, originally published in 1940, presents an early view of Hitler and his plans for German supremacy and was written by Hermann Rauschning, who worked closely with Hitler until he resigned from the Danzig senate in 1934.
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