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368BOOK REVIEWS Yƶurs Is a Precious Witness:Memoirs ofJews and Catholics in Wartime Italy. By Margherita Marchione. (Mahwah, NewJersey: PauUst Press. 1997. Pp. x, 260. $14.95.) Margherita Marchione, a Filippini Sister, has written an engaging book focusing on CathoUcs and the Holocaust. She has appropriately dedicated it to the late Jesuit historian, Robert A. Graham, who did much to correct the false interpretation of the Vatican's role with respect to theJews during World War II (see "Epilogue"). Quite rightly, she notes (p. 57) the faUure of those, including John E Morley in his study, Vatican Diplomacy and theJews During the Holocaust (1980), to make use of aU four volumes of the Holy See's documents relating to its humanitarian efforts in World War II. The book is divided into three parts. After introducing the story ofthe Holocaust in Italy, Marchione reviews its major developments. Then she focuses on ItalianJews and what was done for them in Rome, Milan, Ferrara,Assisi, Genoa, Florence, and Venice. At the same time, she surveys the work of the FUippini Sisters , the Redemptorists, the FatebenefratelU, the Salesians, and the Sisters of Zion, and reviews the policies of the Vatican and the actions of Pope Pius XII. Lastly, the author deals with the aftermath of the Holocaust in the testimonials from Jews about the role of the Catholic Church and Pius XII, in the relations between CathoUcs and Jews, and in the documentation relating to what is covered in the text. Marchione's study reveals some interesting detaUs: the various ways in which Italians risked their lives (and institutions) to save Jews; the view that San Saba in Trieste had the only operational gas chamber in a concentration camp outside of Poland (pp. 99 and 130); the ways of providing refugee Jews with documents , food, shelter, and even opportunities to exercise their reUgious beUefs and practices; the roles which religious brothers, sisters, and priests, in addition to certain cardinals and bishops, played Ui helpingJews; and the Nazi massacres of Italians in Tuscany. This reviewer's own study, TheJesuits and the Third Reich (1989), had suggested that religious orders and congregations constitute a fertile area for more studies about Catholics and the Holocaust. Within the parameters ofher book's subtitle, Marchione has contributed markedly to such a development. However, the list of religious groups compUed by Renzo De Felice and reprinted in her work (pp. 218-221) indicates that much more remains to be uncovered about Rome. If this is the case for one city, it is also true for the other cities surveyed in her book. Perhaps Marchione's study may caU to mind such movies as Conspiracy of Hearts (I960), The Scarlet and the Black (1983), and TheAssisi Underground (1984), in addition to such books as Michael O'CarroU's Pius XII (1980) and BOOK REVIEWS369 Susan Zuccotti's The Italians and the Holocaust (1987). WhUe Marchione's work is an exceUent source for anyone wanting to learn more about the relationship of the Catholic Church and Pope Pius XII to the Jews in World War II, it is also a remarkable story of courageous CathoUcs, lay and reUgious, who risked their lives to save Jews during the Holocaust. Vincent A. Lapomarda College ofthe Holy Cross ...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1534-0708
Print ISSN
0008-8080
Pages
pp. 368-369
Launched on MUSE
2016-10-05
Open Access
No
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