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23 April, 2024
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Vatican's keeper of secrets retires, unveils hidden truths

Archbishop's new book delves into secret archives


The Vatican, known for its enigmatic archives, sheds light on its secrets as Archbishop Sergio Pagano reveals hidden details spanning 12 centuries in his upcoming book, ''Secretum.''

According to a report on AP, despite efforts to demystify the archives, a veil of intrigue has shrouded its contents until now. Pagano, who has spent 45 years in the Vatican Apostolic Archive, unveils mysteries in conversations with journalist Massimo Franco.

The archive, originally opened by Pope Leo XIII in 1881, houses documents from past papacies, Vatican offices, and global embassies, along with collections from noble families and religious orders.

Scholars have recently delved into the archives, particularly scrutinizing documents from Pope Pius XII's era during World War II. Pagano, unlike many Vatican officials, criticizes Pius for his silence on Nazi atrocities even after the war, attributing it to political concerns about a Jewish state.

Pagano also questions the rush to canonize Pius, revealing gaps in research and highlighting the incomplete understanding of historical contexts. His revelations extend beyond Vatican politics, including the financial dynamics between the Vatican and the U.S. church, dating back to a critical 1922 conclave.

Furthermore, Pagano suggests that the Vatican's decision to rename the archive reflects a nod to potential donors, notably the U.S. church. The rebranding aims to dispel negative perceptions and foster support for the archive's preservation.

As Pagano showcases historical artifacts, including a 1530 letter pivotal to the Anglican Church's formation, he underscores the archivist's duty to safeguard history. Among the tales of intrigue, he proudly recounts how the letter survived Napoleon's seizure of the archives in 1810, hidden in a secret drawer.

Pagano's revelations offer a glimpse into the Vatican's storied past, dispelling myths while preserving the legacy of its archives.

[With information sourced from AP]

Cyprus  |  US  |  Vatican  |  church  |  secrets

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