Despite charges brought against him by some of his fiercest critics, Pius XII was no war criminal, and no friend to Hitler.
The Vatican is on the defensive as Jewish groups object to its decision to move Pius XII, the wartime pope, toward sainthood.
The defenders of Pope Pius XII argue that he worked diplomatically to save the lives of thousands of Jews.
The pope also wants to skirt another recent source of conflict with Israel—the planned beatification of Pope Pius XII.
But of course, there is the now fading memory of the election that followed the long pontificate of Pius XII.
The older stove, where the ballots will be burned, was first used in 1939 to elect Pope Pius XII in just three votes.