John T. Pawlikowski

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John T. Pawlikowski, O.S.M. (born November 2, 1940) is a Servite Friar priest, Professor Emeritus of Social Ethics, and Former Director of the Catholic-Jewish Studies Program, part of The Bernardin Center for Theology and Ministry, at Catholic Theological Union (CTU) in Chicago.[1] He is currently in residence at Assumption Church in the River North section of Chicago.[2]

As member of Catholic Theological Union since 1968,[3] Pawlikowski was appointed to the United States Holocaust Memorial Council in 1980 by then-President Jimmy Carter. He was subsequently re-appointed by Presidents George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton. As of 2008, he chaired the Council's Subcommittee on Church Relations and served on its Executive Committee, the Committee on Conscience, and Academic Committee.[1] Pawlikowski also served as president of the International Council of Christians and Jews (ICCJ) from 2002-2008.[4]

Early life[edit]

Pawlikowski was born on November 2, 1940, in Chicago, Illinois, the son of Thaddeus John and Anna Mary (née Mizera) Pawlikowski. After high school, he entered the Order of the Servants of Mary in 1958, and subsequently enrolled at Loyola University Chicago, graduating with a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1963. He continued his priestly studies in Northern Ireland, only to return to the United States and eventually graduate from the University of Saint Mary of the Lake (Mundelein Seminary). Pawlikowski was then ordained to the priesthood in 1967, and a year later became one of the founding faculty members of Catholic Theological Union. In 1970, he received a Doctor of Philosophy degree in social ethics from The University of Chicago. He also studied, for a time, at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and Mansfield College, University of Oxford. In addition to his teaching responsibilities at CTU, he has also completed fellowships at St. Edmund's College, University of Cambridge and the Catholic University of Leuven.[5][6][7]


Pawlikowski has been critical of John Cornwell's book Hitler's Pope,[8][9] a scathing representation of the record of Pope Pius XII and the Vatican during the Holocaust. Pawlikowski characterized Cornwall's book as "full of exaggerated claims and deceptions," "a work of deeply flawed scholarship" that "presents only the evidence that suggests [Cornwall's] predetermined view."[10] Other scholars have expressed similar judgments about the quality of Cornwall's book.[11]



  1. ^ a b "John T. Pawlikowski". United States Holocaust Museum. Archived from the original on 2008-10-07. Retrieved 2008-11-21.
  2. ^ Assumption Catholic Church website [1] Accessed August 6, 2017.
  3. ^ "TESTIMONY BY REV. JOHN T. PAWLIKOWSKI, O.S.M., PH.D." United States House of Representatives. Archived from the original on 2008-07-31. Retrieved 2008-11-21.
  4. ^ "What dialogue looks like: Catholic-Jewish relations," Prairie Messenger, 93, no. 10 (August 26, 2015),
  5. ^ "John Courtney Murray Award Citation," Catholic Theological Society of America, June 7, 2014, (accessed July 25, 2017).
  6. ^ "What dialogue looks like: Catholic-Jewish relations," Prairie Messenger, 93, no. 10 (August 26, 2015),
  7. ^ John T. Pawlikowski, O.S.M., "Christian-Jewish Relations and Vatican II," in Vatican II: Fifty Personal Stories, Rev. and expanded ed., eds. William Madges and Michael J. Daley (Maryknoll, NY: Orbis Books, 2012), 212.
  8. ^ Pope Pius XII and the Nazis
  9. ^ The Christian Century 117.6 (Feb 23, 2000): 214-216
  10. ^ Pawlikowski, John T. The Christian Century 117.6 (Feb 23, 2000): 214
  11. ^ See, for example, Kenny, Anthony. "Neither saint nor sinner." National Post [Don Mills, Ont, National Edition] 06 Nov 1999: 8. Zmirak, John. "Half a Million Witnesses." Intercollegiate Review 41.1 (Spring 2006): 53-56. Cavalli, Dimitri. "Pope Pius XII and the Holocaust: A Reply to Daniel Goldhagen." Modern Age 45.3 (Summer 2003): 278-284.

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