Vatican Opens Archives for Unprecedented Exhibit

July 5, 2011 - 7:50 AM

VATICAN CITY (AP) - The Vatican will be displaying 100 select documents from its Secret Archives at an unprecedented exhibit next year, including previously unpublished papers on its World War II-era pope.

The Vatican No. 2, Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, unveiled plans for "Lux in Arcana: The Vatican Secret Archives Revealed" at a briefing Tuesday.

The exhibit, which runs from February to September at Rome's Capitoline Museums, marks the first time such precious documents, manuscripts and parchments have been allowed out of the Vatican vaults for view by the general public. The occasion is the Archive's 400th anniversary.

Officials said some of the previously unseen documents concern Pope Pius XII, accused by some Jews of failing to speak out enough to stop the Holocaust.