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Saint Hitler
November 28, 2012
by William P. Meyers

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The creation of saints has been one of the Vatican's best propaganda tools. Saints encourage national or ethnic affiliation with the Roman Catholic faith, and they may also represent vocations or other attributes people can identify with.

It takes a while for a dead person to achieve sainthood. partly this is because Rome requires three "miracles" to be attributed to a person. In ancient times the miracles usually occurred before death. In our times the miracles are almost always cures that sick people achieve after praying to the potential saint. The Vatican has rules for what is a medical miracle and what is not, and they seem to follow the rules, so it may take quite a few decades of pretty many sick people praying to someone to build up the case for sainthood.

Right now Catholic Worker founder Dorothy Day is being promoted as a potential saint. She would have been appalled at such nonsense. She would have had a thing or two to say about Spanish-Civil War era Catholic fascists priests who are in line for sainthood, too.

A rather large number of miracles have been unofficially attributed to Adolf Hitler, the former Chancellor of Germany. The Vatican is keeping them under wraps for purely political reasons. Hitler was the boy wonder of the Catholic Church in the 1920's and 1930's. When the Catholics lost World War II they had to do an abrupt about-face on Hitler. Most Americans think Adolf was a pagan, so effective has the re-write of history been effected.

You have to understand that Hitler, the American political establishment, and the Pope all had a common enemy back then: atheistic communism. Their epitome of evil was Joseph Stalin, leader of the openly communist Soviet Union (USSR, essentially Russia). But people were falling away from Catholicism in droves in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The system of simply killing Protestants, agnostics and atheists had broken down even in Spain and Italy. Fascism, Pope Pius XI realized, could be made into the ideal tool to insure that only one religion was allowed in the world.

Benito Mussolini only converted to the Roman Catholic faith after he had achieved power in Italy, but most of his supporters were Catholic and the Pope was willing to work with anyone who could crush the secularist and socialist movements after World War II. Mussolini and the Pope were willing partners.

Adolf Hitler was raised Catholic and first rose to prominence after World War I in Bavaria, which had (and still has) a Catholic majority. His first miracle might be said to be surviving World War I unscathed, despite constantly being on the frontline, except for a leg wound and later temporary blindness from poison gas used by the British near the end of the war. His party, the National Socialist (Nazi) Party was just one of many tiny parties created in the chaos after World War I, and it used Socialist in a sense opposite to its common meaning..

The Nazi Party was not officially Catholic: its membership also admitted Lutherans, a few pagans who wanted to restore the worship of pre-christian German gods, and even modern, non-religious members. The Catholic Center Party was the main Catholic party, but the Pope did not feel it was aggressive enough and in the end pushed to have Hitler as German Chancellor. So perhaps it was not a miracle that Hitler, the leader of the largest party legally elected to the German Reichstag, was given the position of Chancellor on January 30, 1933. The Pope did not feel that his friend Franz von Papen was sufficiently iron-willed enough to destroy socialism and atheism, but as second in command von Papen was supposed to watch out for the Pope's interest.

Hitler's next miracle was a pretty impressive one: helping General Franco establish a purely Roman Catholic, fascist regime in Spain by killing everyone who believed in religious freedom and democracy, even including a large number of Catholics. The Pope was very happy with Hitler and Mussolini about that. Priests killed in the fighting on Hitler's side of Spain's Civil War have been nominated for sainthood. Priests killed on the pro-democracy side have been ignored, but then maybe no one prays to them, and hence they are unable to show their miraculous healing powers.

Hitler and the Pope did quarrel quite a bit from time to time. Each wanted to be top dog. But the Pope was more than happy that Hitler forced German Lutherans into a "unity church" with Catholics. He was thrilled when Hitler's armies defeated the French Republic and replaced it with the Roman Catholic, Fascist, Vichy Government. Most of all, the Pope was thrilled when Hitler's bombers and tanks went for the heart of the Russia.

What was president-for-life Franklin Delano Roosevelt doing about Saint Hitler? At first not much, because he needed American Catholic votes to stay in power. While Catholics were, and still are, a religious minority in the United States, they had power beyond their numbers because of their political and geographic concentration. They were almost all in the Democratic Party, and they were almost all in the northeastern states. The Democrats needed them as badly as they needed white segregationists in the southern states. Thus President Roosevelt refused to allow the Republican (democratically elected) side in the Spanish Civil war to buy arms from the United States.

Roosevelt may have shed a tear for France, but he actually did nothing because he knew the French empire would be up for grabs. He planned for the British Empire, Soviet Union, and Germany to chew up each other in Europe, and for Japan and China to chew up each other in Asia, so that in the end he could conquer the world. Roosevelt was smarter and more patient than your average dictator.

American Catholics would probably have kept this nation out of World War II if it had not been for the war between the Japanese and China, which had much to do with colonialism but nothing to do with religion. When Japan and Germany declared war on the U.S.A., suddenly Catholics here put aside their religion in favor of American nationalism.

The atheists in Russia, while losing about 20 million dead (see Atheist Holocaust), defeated Hitler, and apparently would have even if the U.S. had stayed out of the war. When Stalin's soldiers started marching towards Berlin, the Pope began to hedge his bets. He flipped when U.S. troops invaded Italy. Suddenly he could only remember the fights he had had with Hitler, not their love affair. When Hitler was no longer producing miracles, the Pope needed a more practical basis for the long-term survival of his church in Europe. America made a natural ally because at its core it was anti-communist and pro-capitalist. While the Pope preferred the fascist economic system (with God's blessing, as enshrined in Papal encyclicals that they don't want you reading anymore), given the choice between communism and capitalism, the Pope went with the U.S. and Britain. The Cold War started before Hitler had even died.

Hitler died on April 30, 1945. On his death certificate his religion was marked Roman Catholic. He had run out of miracles.

But he fought the good fight, doubtless went to Catholic heaven, and is due for a revival. Now may not be the time. But be assured, the Vatican is keeping a list, and when the time is ready, the miracles of Saint Hitler will be revealed.

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