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Merton's Correspondence with:

Giovanni B. Montini; Giovanni Battista Montini; Pope Paul VI; Giovanni Enrico Antonio Maria Montini

Paul VI, Pope, 1897-1978  printer

 
 

Descriptive Summary

Record Group: Section A - Correspondence
Dates of materials: 1949-1968
Volume: 25 item(s); 42 pg(s)

Scope and Content

Biography

Merton first wrote Giovanni B. Montini in 1949 while serving as Secretary of State for the Vatican under Pope Pius XII. Montini became Archbishop of Milan in 1955, was elevated to cardinal in 1958, and was elected Pope Paul VI in 1963.

Paul VI read and appreciated Merton's writings. He had an active role in the Second Vatican Council before and after becoming pope. Merton was lending support to the Second Vatican Council's statement on interfaith dialog, which became Nostra Aetate, the "Declaration on the Relation of the Church with Non-Christian Religions," which was proclaimed under Pope Paul VI. Merton was also pleased with Paul VI for his statement for peace before the United Nations in 1965. Merton wrote to delegates at Vatican II supporting Schema 13's provisions against modern war, later a part of Gaudium et Spes, the "Pastoral Constitution on the Church in the Modern World".

Usage Guidelines and Restrictions

Please click here for general restrictions concerning Merton's correspondence.

Related Information and Links

See also published letters from Merton to Pope Paul VI published in The Hidden Ground of Love, pp. 486-492; see also one published letter (not delivered) from Merton in Witness to Freedom, p. 230; and see also the "John XXIII", "Giabbani, Anselmo", and "Fox, James" files. All letters between Merton and Montini are presented in English and in Italian in Notiziario 70 (December 2015) 7-39.

Series List

This Record Sub-Group is not divided into Series and is arranged chronologically.

Container List

#DateFrom/ToFirst LinesPubNotes
1. 1949/06/23 TLS to Merton With sentiments of heartfelt gratitude do I acknowledge receipt of the copy of your book "Seeds «detailed view»
2. 1949/10/13 TLS to Merton It is my honored and privileged duty to inform you that His Holiness has received your letter «detailed view»
3. 1953/03/28 TLS to Merton Under the revered command of His Holiness, I am to acknowledge receipt of the letter which you «detailed view»
4. 1955/04/25 TLS[x] from Merton It is some time since I have had the honor of communicating with your Excellency but I nevertheless «detailed view»
5. 1955/08/20 (#01) HLS to Merton Le scrivo con fauto ritardo, lo so, e su una Sua questione che regarding whether Merton should leave Gethsemani and join the Camaldolese / advises against this change for practical reasons - Camaldolese unstable at present, leaving Gethsemani would scandalize readers - Merton should listen to his heart but obey his abbot «detailed view»
6. 1955/08/20 (#02) transcript to Merton I am writing to you with a good deal of delay, I know, and on your one question which would have [English translation of letter of the same date from Montini] regarding whether Merton should leave Gethsemani and join the Camaldolese / advises against this change for practical reasons - Camaldolese unstable at present, leaving Gethsemani would scandalize readers - Merton should listen to his heart but obey his abbot «detailed view»
7. 1955/08/20 (#03) transcript to Fox, James Taking advantage of a moment's quiet today, I have written to Father Louis. I also think he would do [see "Fox, James" file, Series 16, for the original letter from Montini to Dom James Fox, Abbot of Gethsemani] «detailed view»
8. 1955/08/24 transcript from Giabbani, Anselmo Your letter, written with your usual goodness of spirit toward us, encourages me to explain briefly [see the "Giabbani, Anselmo" file for a photocopy of the handwritten letter in Italian] «detailed view»
9. 1955/10/01 TLS[x] from Merton Your Excellency's long and wise letter, written with such clarity and such understanding, was to me «detailed view»
10. 1955/10/20 transcript from Fox, James We have just returned from our General Chapter in Europe. Please pardon the delay in answering your [see "Fox, James" file, Series 16, for the carbon copy of the letter to Montini from Dom James Fox, Abbot of Gethsemani] «detailed view»
11. 1963/07/15 TLS to Merton We thank you, beloved son, for your devoted expression of felicitations on Our Election, [first letter written to Merton as pope] «detailed view»
12. 1963/07/26 TL[c] from Merton Humbly prostrate at the feet of Your Holiness, I wish to express my most devoted and filial «detailed view»
13. 1964/02/06 (#01) TL[d] from Merton It was to me a deeply moving surprise and a great joy to receive from our Father Abbot the little [uncorrected draft] «detailed view»
14. 1964/02/06 (#02) TAL[d] from Merton It was to me a deeply moving surprise and a great joy to receive from our Father Abbot the little [draft with handwritten corrections] «detailed view»
15. 1964/02/06 (#03) TL[c] from Merton It was to me a deeply moving surprise and a great joy to receive from our Father Abbot the little [final version - two carbon copies] «detailed view»
16. 1965/05/16 (#01) TAL[d] from Merton The main purpose of this letter is, in a spirit of filial obedience and devotion, [draft with handwritten corrections] «detailed view»
17. 1965/05/16 (#02) TL[c] from Merton The main purpose of this letter is, in a spirit of filial obedience and devotion, [2 carbon copies and 1 transcript] «detailed view»
18. 1965/10/15 TL[c] from Merton Permit me to thank you from the bottom of my heart, in my own name and in the name of those American «detailed view»
19. 1967/10/11 (#01) TL[c] from Merton Since at the request of friends I am sending you herewith some pictures of the Crucifix done «detailed view»
20. 1967/10/11 (#02) TL[c] from Merton This summer you made reference to the imprint of Our Saviour's Holy Face on the Shroud of Turin, «detailed view»
21. 1967/11/13 TLS to Merton At the gracious direction of the Holy Father, it is my honored duty to acknowledge receipt «detailed view»
22. 1968/06/04 (#01) TAL[d] from Merton I write to you at the request of a small group of Contemplative Nun Superiors who recently met [draft with handwritten corrections and labeled "Confidential"] «detailed view»
23. 1968/06/04 (#02) TL[c] from Merton I write to you at the request of a small group of Contemplative Nun Superiors who recently met [3 carbon copies] «detailed view»
24. undated/no/no (#01) TL[c] from Merton This letter will be presented to you by a delegation of faithful Catholics from Nicaragua in Central [Patricia Burton notes in her "Index to the Published Letters of Thomas Merton" that this letter was not delivered] «detailed view»
25. undated/no/no (#02) TLS[x] from Merton This letter will be presented to you by a delegation of faithful Catholics from Nicaragua in Central [Patricia Burton notes in her "Index to the Published Letters of Thomas Merton" that this letter was not delivered - see also a letter from Merton to Ernesto Cardenal of 1965/10/22 which included this letter and a letter to Archbishop Paul Philippe as enclosures (one xerox of signed copy and one carbon in the Cardenal file)] «detailed view»

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