Religious resistance

Letter from Monsignor Théas, bishop of Montauban, “Read without comment at every mass in all the churches and chapels of the diocese on Sunday 30 August 1942”:

“My dear brothers,

Painful and sometimes horrible scenes are unfolding in France, without France being responsible for them.

In Paris, tens of thousands of Jews have been treated with the most barbaric savagery. And in our regions we are witnessing pitiful sights: families torn apart; men and women treated like base livestock and sent to an unknown destination with the prospect of the gravest dangers.

I intend to make the indignant voice of the Christian conscience heard and proclaim that all men, Aryans and non-Aryans, are brothers because they were created by the same God; that all men, regardless of their race or their religion, are entitled to respect from individuals and States.

The present anti-Semitic measures are an insult to human dignity, a violation of the most sacred human and family rights.

May God console and strengthen those who are being iniquitously persecuted. May He bring true and lasting peace based on justice and charity to the world.”

Monsignor Théas in Les catholiques français sous l'occupation, Jacques DUQUESNE, Grasset, 1966