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The Church and the Spanish Civil War



     Spaniards at Stanford are so sharply divided that one who is well-informed about the Civil War does not wish to be identified, so I refer to him here as X. His statement on the Catholic Church has been questioned by David Pike, who writes:
     "The role of the Church in the Spanish Civil War was hardly Christlike, but X errs in saying that the Spanish bishops "haven't been able to bring themselves to ask for forgiveness for the Catholic Church's role in the war." On September 15, 1971, the first general meeting of Spanish bishops and priests was held in Madrid. In a "retrospective examination of conscience," the Spanish Church adopted a resolution (137 in favor, 78 opposed, 19 expressing reservations, and 10 abstentions) asking for pardon --in general terms --for its partisan attitude during the Civil War.
     The resolution opened with a quotation from St John on the need for those who have sinned to recognize their sin, and it continued: "Thus we humbly acknowledge our faults and implore pardon, for not knowing at the time how to comport ourselves as true ministers by seeking the reconciliation of our people, divided as they were in a fratricidal war."

Ronald Hilton - 5/12/00


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