A Profile of Courage / by Joseph Castorino


Eugenio Pacelli is consecrated a bishop,

  In Italy’s historic city of Rome,

But he is flung like a javelin into Germany,

  And Munich is now his home;

Egelhofer sends Commander Seiler

  On a mission filled with human hate,

The truth is Mr. E. thirsts for blood,

  And Pacelli he wishes to assassinate;

Commander Seiler and this gang selfishly strut

  To the bishop’s place of residence,

They’re planning a brash bold attack,

  Plotting his murder with confidence;

They threaten the servant with weapons,

  So he reluctantly lets them in,

Now they await the bishop’s return,

  Thinking victory they will win.


Seiler stands ready at the door,

  With his thugs in a semicircle around,

Armed with loaded guns and grenades,

  Their faces are rather frowned;

When the bishop opens the door,

  Seiler points a pistol at his pectoral cross,

Yet Pacelli fearlessly stands his ground,

  And shows him who is boss;

The holy bishop speaks as soft as an abbot,

  Or even a most prayerful friar,

But his courageous words rip into them,

  Like relentless machine gun fire;

The bishop’s eyes are two spear tips,

  That pierce right through their souls,

And in a daze they gape back at him,

  As motionless as telephone poles.


With empty hands the would-be assassins

  Return to Egelhofer the Extreme,

To his surprise, Pacelli still lives,

  And in the Munich diocese reigns supreme;

The bishop bravely swatted their plans,

  As if they were harmless flies,

Never before had they looked at a priest

  With such powerful paralyzing eyes;

During the Second World War,

  He saved countless lives from Nazi extermination,

And many Jewish people commended him,

  For his covert operation;

This lean, stately figure ran the Church,

  Though he never sought out fame,

He is better known as Pope Pius,

  The Twelfth who has held that name.