Monday, January 18, 2016

Pope Pius XII and Animals

Venerable Pius XII with his Pet Bird

One of the frustrating aspects of being an educated Catholic in our times is how the beatification and eventual canonization of Venerable Pope Pius XII has stalled. One would think that Pope Francis would be the perfect Pope to champion this issue. The Bear has no idea who could possibly object to a St. Pius XII, especially as we have a St. John XXIII, a St. John Paul II, and even a St. Paul VI.

Perhaps some are angry that he did not single-handedly infiltrate Germany during WWII and assassinate der Fuhrer. Perhaps he is not Vatican II enough. All the Bear knows is that the process seems to be stalled without reason, when we could derive comfort from a St. Pius XII, especially now.  

Many will have seen pictures of this saintly Pope with his pet bullfinch. Here is the story behind them.
Pius XII was walking in his garden when he noticed a disabled bullfinch. He didn’t ‘pass by on the other side’. He didn’t just direct a gardener to dispose of it. Like the Good Samaritan he took it up tenderly, carried it back to the Vatican (which has seen papal pets before now) and nursed it back to health and strength. After that the bird was never happier than when in his presence. It flew round the room when the Pope was shaving and settled on his head and even on his electric razor, enjoying an intimacy allowed to no other, man or beast. It was a sad moment when Sister Pasqualina carried the bird back to a Vatican that would know Pius XII no more.
Pope Pius XII cared about animals. You can read more here, from The Ark.


  1. God is in the small moments; the small gestures like this. Thank you.

  2. The bird's name was Gretl.

    As for why the canonization of Pacelli has stalled, Alinsky's tactics explain it quite well: Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it.

    The fact that a saint like Pius XII is radioactive only reinforces the certainty that he had to be repudiated because the pre-conciliar Church had to be repudiated, and his is the face of that time. His sponsorship of Bugnini and the damaging 1955 liturgical vandalism buy him no kinder treatment because that sort never hesitates to eat its own if it will advance the rebellion.

    1. I suspect it has more to do with the calumny about his indifference to the plight of Jews during WWII.

  3. God bless Pope Pius XII.

    Turning, however, to bird acts reminiscent of W.C. Fields and his 'My Little Chickadee', I recall in January 2014 the present Bishop of Rome contrived to conjure-up before the public eye a symbol of 'peace' by way of some doves he tossed out the window though all that went rather badly when a raven, playing the avian god-of-surprises, objected.

    1. An unlikely duo of a raven and a seagull, IIRC. They savaged the poor dove in front of the horrified eyes of prop children.

  4. I actually have some very good reasons against Pius XII (many of the same that go against Paul VI, actually). I might do a post on it later.

  5. I actually have some very good reasons against Pius XII (many of the same that go against Paul VI, actually). I might do a post on it later.


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