Pope hopes Pius can proceed to sainthood

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Pope Benedict XVI said Thursday that he hoped his predecessor Pius XII, whom some Jews have accused of turning a blind eye to the Holocaust, could proceed on the road to Roman Catholic sainthood.

In a homily at a Mass commemorating the 50th anniversary of his death in 1958, Benedict defended Pius, saying he worked "secretly and silently" in World War II to "avoid the worst and save the greatest number of Jews possible."

Some Jews assert that Pius did not do enough to save Jews. The Vatican and his Jewish defenders say he worked behind the scenes to help because more direct intervention would have worsened the situation.

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