Image - illustration
Image - illustration
Image - illustration

Open and Accessible: Taking Stock of the Vatican's Holocaust-Era Archives

In March 2019, His Holiness Pope Francis said—now famously—that “the Church is not afraid of history.” The pope was speaking about opening the estimated 16 million pages of archival material for the pontificate of Venerable Pius XII (1939–1958), which became accessible for research in March 2020.

February 2023 marks nearly three years since one of the most important new archives related to the Holocaust opened. What does the process of research in these archives look like on the ground? What have scholars discovered? What crucial questions remain, and how do they reshape our understanding of this era?

Image - Suzanne Brown-Fleming

Suzanne Brown-Fleming

Ph.D., Director, International Academic Programs, U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum

Image - Alexis Herr

Alexis Herr

Ph.D., Adjunct Professor of History, University of San Francisco

Image - Jason DeRose

Jason DeRose

Western Bureau Chief, NPR News—Moderator