Recent Events Make Hitler Audience Unlikely
ITALY'S KEEN DESIRE FOR PEACE
The Work Of Fr. Lieber, S.J.
THE POPE, IT IS SEMI-OFFICIALLY ANNOUNCED, IS LEAVING FOR CASTEL GANDOLFO ON SATURDAY OR SUNDAY.
This move follows the visit of Cardinal Faulhaber to Rome where the elimination of differences between the two hierarchies in the Greater Germany were discussed with Cardinal Pacelli and the Pope.
Italy's policy is being very favourably viewed by the Vatican.
It is based upon the need for the country to look to Britain, France and Spain for future security rather than to ambitious Germany.
This in turn means that Nationalist Spain will look for economic and trade rehabilitation to England, France and Italy rather than to Germany.
The German persecution of the Church is proving in the long run a great diplomatic disadvantage to the country and the protests of the Vatican are meeting today with a stronger international backing than ever before.
From Our Own Correspondent
Having been visited in Munich over Easter both by Cardinal Innitzer and Mgr. von Preysing, Bishop of Berlin, Cardinal Faulhaber, Archbishop of Munich, arrived in Rome on Wednesday, April 20.
The position of the German Hierarchy over the Austrian question has not been easy, as the former stood out before the new Greater Germany as less loyal citizens than their Austrian brethren.
It is clear that the present ambiguous position cannot endure indefinitely, and Cardinal Faulhaber was consulted by the Cardinal Secretary of State as to the possibility of the elimination of differences of policy and the organisation of a united front of all the Cardinals and Bishops of Greater Germany.
Long Talk with Pope
After this preliminary exploration of the situation Cardinal Faulhaber had a long audience with the• Holy Father.
It is felt-brim-aft trend of international events is rapidly repairing theawkward state of affairs resulting"fronT ihe diflerences between the two hIbtarchieVand the Austrian Bishops' misunderstanding with the Holy See.
It is now semi-Officially announced that the Holy Father will leave the Vatican for Castel Gandolfo on Saturd4 or Sunday, thus apparently ruling out any real possibility of a visit of Herr Hitler to the Vatican.
It is generally believed here that the departure to Castel Gandolfo is not unconnected with Hitler's Italian journey in the light of the trend of events. Sensing the growing sense of distrust of Germany in Italy, the greatly lessened popularity of Hitler's visit and the Anelo-Franco-Italian understandings, the Vatican has everything to gain by taking advantage of any excuse for not having the Fuhrer's visit to the Vatican raised as a possibility.
German Hierarchy Preferred This attitude tends to confirm that the views of the more experienced German Hierarchy have been preferred at the Vatican to those of Cardinal Innitzer, though everyone, of course, would welcome the real renewment of friendship between the Reich and the Vatican, as hoped for by the Austrian Cardinal.
I am able to state Fr. Lieber, S.J., has played an important part in all the recent policy.
F. Lieber, who is Cardinal Pacelli's confidential adviser on German affairs, was also his adviser in Berlin when the Cardinal was nuncio. He is now one of the professors in the Faculty of Ecclesiastical History at the Gregorian University. Father Lieber, who retains his close friendship with the Cardinal, had much to do with the composition of the great Encyclical, Mit Brennender Sorge.
Vatican on the Look-out
The Vatican, as ever, is watching very closely the international situation. The coming visit of the Prince of Piedmont (heir to the throne) to Bolzano in the Italian Tyrol in June, the rapid conclusion of the Anglo-Italian agreement and the remarkable article by Colonel Carnevari in Vita Italiana, calling for a definite HaloYugoslavian alliance as a reply to the Anschluss between Germany and Austria indicate the way the wind is blowing in Italy.
It seems incredible that the British Liberal and Labour press cannot see the real significance of the sudden change in Italy.
Italy is now out for peace at almost any price.
The Giornale d'Italia in an Easter leader goes a long way out of its way to underline the Italian desire for peace, comparing the Pax Romana of classical times with the new era of peace, based upon internal unanimity, religion and the family in the Fascist Empire:
"In both empires the supreme end is peace."
If an article like this could spread abroad in the British press, quite a different view of Italy would be taken.
The one preoccupation in Italy is Trieste and Germany's further territorial ambitions in Europe.
The v:ctory of Nationalist Spain can here be seen quite clearly to mean not a turning of Spain to Germany, but to the three Western countries who together can help and secure economic reconstruction and trade revival in Spain: England, France and Italy.
It is already being said in Italy that Hitler will live to regret very strongly the persecution against the Church and that Mussolini, when it suits him to rid himself of German economic pressure, will not fail to make use of Germany's mistake to strengthen his understandings with the three Western countries.
The Czechoslovakian question is a last, but very high hurdle, before a clearer future, but much amusement is caused at the German idea that the Sudeten Germans could remain part of the Czech State while owning spiritual allegiance to the Nazi Reich in the same way as Catholics in Germany remain part of Germany yet give spiritual allegiance to the Church.
The notion of Hitler being a German spiritual Pope tickles the fancy of the keen-witted Italian.
However it comes otit, the old saying "Qui mange du Pape en sneer/ " remains true. Hitler has done so; Mussolini has been intelligent enough to refrain.