338. Editorial Note

The policy of the U.S. Government toward recognizing the Pope as temporal head of the State of Vatican City, that is, establishing full diplomatic relations with the Holy See, did not change during the 1955–1957 period. See Foreign Relations, 1952–1954, volume VI, Part 2, pages 2002 ff. This policy was summarized by Secretary of State Dulles in a conversation on June 10, 1957, with Frederic R. Dolbeare, who had had a visiting lectureship at the Universitá Pro Deo in Rome. The Secretary said:

“During the present Administration the question of U.S. relations with the Vatican had not become a practical issue, that is, something that the President felt he had to make up his mind about. As Mr. Dolbeare was aware, this was quite a political problem and as past experience showed, public discussion of it might create more of a stir in this country than the Vatican would like to see.” (Department of State, Central Files, 611.65A/6–1057)

The United States continued to recognize the Pope as head of the Roman Catholic Church and exchanged courtesies with him. At the initiative of the Vatican, Secretary Dulles had an audience with Pope Pius XII on October 23, 1955. The report of their conversation is printed infra.