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Berlin, Richard E., 1894- / Diary of a flight to occupied Germany, July 20 to August 27, 1945.
(1945?)

Audience with his holiness,   pp. 101-104 PDF (1007.0 KB)


Page 101

Audience with His Holiness
We were informed at dinner that an au licnce had been arranged
with His Holiness Pope Pius XII for tomorrow.
Monday, August 20
After attending Mass at St. Peter's, a representative of the State
Department conducted us to the Vatican. Stopping enroute at the
Catholic Club, we purchased Rosary Beads and other ecclesiastical
objects as gifts for friends at home, desiring to have them blest by
His Holiness.
Passing groups of soldiers on the steps of St. Peter's, we
motored to the left of the entrance to St. Peter's and into the
Vatican entrance. Conducted to the chambers of His Holiness on
the third floor, we walked through seven beautiful rooms. At each
room entrance, Swiss Guards clicked their heels and stood at at-
tention while we passed.
Ushered into the ante-chamber of His Holiness, we were met by
the chamberlain who asked us to await our audience with the Holy
Father. In this ante-room were two superb marble tables; there
weas a gorgeous gold clock on one. The gold chairs and the ex-
quisite red silk tapestry on the wall were too magnificent for words.
Immediately adjacent to this room was a large chamber known
as the Ambassador's room, where His Holiness receives digni-
taries from foreign nations. While we waited, the Spanish Am-
bassador, in diplomatic dress, emerged from a private office of His
Holiness. We wxTere introduced.
In a few moments we were escorted into the office of the Holy
Father. His Holiness wore a white brocade silk robe. He is a thin
man, and has blue eyes-height about 5 feet, 11 inches. His hair
is sparse and his face very sad. He greeted us warmly, shaking
hands. As I kissed his ring I was impressed by his lovely long
fingers.
101


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