Ever since the 19th century, communism has been a punishable heresy. However, there were only two members of the early 20th century Curia that had personal contact with communism: Achille Ratti, the later Pope Pius XI, as nuncio in Poland and Eugenio Pacelli, the later Pope Pius XII, as nuncio in Munich. Their attitude towards the fascist and national-socialist movements in Italy and Germany in the 1920s and 1930s was much more conciliatory than their stance towards communism. While Ratti and Pacelli were unable to find a modus vivendi with the communist regime in the Soviet Union, they negotiated the Lateran Accords with Mussolini and the Reichskonkordat with Hitler. On the basis of new documents, mainly drawn from the Pacelli-edition, and with the help of psychological and biographical theories, the article discusses how far these experiences were imprinting and whether they influenced the anti-communism of both as popes.
Eugenio Pacelli. Anticomunism. Bavarian Soviet Republik (Bayerische Räterepublik).