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The Unpublished Memoirs of Edgardo Mortara
Vittorio Messori
Translated by Michael J. Miller
Foreward by Roy Schoeman

“In 1888 Fr. Edgardo Mortara wrote his autobiography so that the world would understand he had not been kidnapped by the Vatican. Here, along with a thorough introduction by Vittorio Messori, his story is published for the first time in English.

“As an infant, Mortara was on the point of death and secretly baptized by a Catholic servant employed by is family. He recovered his health, and in the Papal States where his family live, the law required that he, like other baptized children receive a Christian education. After several failed attempts to persuade his parents to enroll him in a local Catholic school, in 1858 Pope Pius IX had the boy taken from his family in Bologna and sent to a Catholic boarding school in Rome. There the child grew in Faith and eventually responded to the calling to become a Catholic priest.

“The Mortara Case reverberated around the world. Journalists, politicians, and Jewish leaders tried to pressure Pius IX to reverse his decision. The pope’s refusal to do so was used as one of the reasons to dissolve the Papal States in 1870. Currently the case is being used as an argument against the canonization of Pius IX, whom John Paul II beatified in 2000.”


Foreword by Roy Schoeman

The Mortara Case by Vittorio Messori


The Mortara Child and Pius IX

The Autobiographical Account of the “Mortara Case”
Written by the Protagonist, Reverend Father Pio Maria Mortara, C.R.L.

The Baptism
The separation
The Mortara child and Pius IX
Journalism and diplomacy of grace in young Mortara
The supernatural instinct of grace in young Mortara
The Mortara child and his relationship with his parents and his family
Confirmation and personal ratification of his Baptism
Revenge attempted and thwarted
Flight and emigration
A look back
The last word

Ignatius Press, ©2017, Soft cover, 190 pages