PAUL VI, Pope and Saint (1897-1978)
Supreme pontiff of the Roman Catholic Church; longtime Papal Substitute Secretary of State; Pro-Secretary for Ordinary Affairs; former Archbishop of Milan. Elected supreme pontiff on 23 June 1963. Canonized saint 14 October 2018 by Pope Francis I.
TLS – Typewritten Letter Signed, two pages, 29 Deember 1945. Addressed to Prince Virginio Orsini. Reads: Most Noble Sir, I well understand your deep concern and sadness with the death of your sister, Lady Ildegarda Orsini, but want to assure you that nothing by this office has been neglected in an effort to fulfill as best of possible your wishes.
Following your request of October 9, I quickly requested that the Apostolic Delegate in Washington inform “with due caution”, Prince Orsini (Domenico Napoleone I) of the tragic news. On that same date I wrote to the Archbishop of Vienna (Cardinal Innitzer) with a request that he report on the circumstances arising from the death of the Princess and to inform us of the place where her body is buried.
Unfortunately, I have not receive a reply as yet due to the relatively short period of time between when the letters were sent and coupled with the difficulty of communication about the actual circumstances…made equally difficult for the Holy See.
It is likely, however, that on December 4th your father still had not received the sad news and Cardinal Innitzer hasn’t had the time to pursue the necessary investigation. I can assure you that the request of sacred furnishings, made by Father Di Scorpio Belisario, have been directed to the appropriate office.
I take this opportunity to reaffirm my most distinct respect. G.B. Montini.
This letter has been lovingly protected by a custom folder bearing the papal and Orsini coat of arms on the cover. On the interior left is a watercolor giclee portrait of Paul VI. To the right is an acid-free envelope holding the 1949 letter. A truly magnificent piece of papal history. Note bene: the image of the folder is for illustrative purposes only. Yours will differ with added components.