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The Holy Christian Emperor Who Died in the Cold of Exile

by William Doino, Jr.

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  • Description:
    With new testimony from Dietrich von Hildebrand, William Doino presents the story of Charles I, the last emperor-king of the Austrian-Hungarian Empire, who has become a symbol of Catholic leadership and integrity.
  • Larger Work:
    Inside the Vatican
  • Pages: 28 – 33
  • Publisher & Date:
    Urbi et Orbi Communications, New Hope, KY, September 2004

The beatification of the last emperor-king of the Austrian-Hungarian Empire raises great issues of Christianity and political rule that have haunted Europe for centuries. Emperor Charles I's leadership in the final years of World War I dramatized the great issues of war and peace, legitimate defense and wanton slaughter, pride-filled egotism and Christian justice and charity. Serious men, especially Christians, have pondered these topics for years.

"To be a true Christian — especially a true Christian statesman — in the contemporary world, is nearly impossible. The temptation to lie, to cheat, to betray one's deepest convictions in order to obtain power or gain fleeting approval, is overwhelming. None but saints can live up to the challenge." So spoke Erik von Kuehnelt-Leddihn, the late Austrian Catholic political scientist, in one of his most memorable comments.

Nowhere do these words better apply than to the First World War. In his acclaimed work, The Pity of War, Niall Ferguson analyzes the series of fatal mistakes which led to that wholesale carnage, and measures the War with the teachings of Christ: "Apart from anything else," writes Ferguson, "it was obvious to even the least sophisticated soldier that there was a difference between the Sermon on the Mount and that of the drill instructor on the use of the bayonet." The thousands of Catholic priests — not to mention the countless Catholic laymen — who took part in the conflict had to contend "with the embarrassment of Benedict XV's opposition to the War." Some of them fell victim to "a muscular, not to say bloodthirsty" version of Christianity, leading to a split mentality — sanctioning the immoral war, yet professing to cling to some form of Christian morality. Ferguson quotes a caustic wartime poem to drive the point home:

I do not wish to hurt you
But (Bang!) I feel I must.
It is a Christian virtue
To lay you in the dust.
You — (Zip! That bullet got you)
You're really better dead.
I'm sorry that I shot you —
Here, let me hold your head."

In his acclaimed biography, The Unknown Pope: Benedict XV (1914-1922) and the Pursuit of Peace (London: Geoffrey Chapman, 1999), John F. Pollard describes the valiant efforts of Pope Benedict XV to end this madness and bloodshed, raising the papacy to a new level of moral authority.

Benedict issued several major statements against the war, and protested vigorously, to all the guilty parties, when outrages were committed. He also performed works of mercy that stagger the imagination when one remembers how meager were his resources — and how difficult were the conditions under which he worked.

Other than Pope Benedict, one of the few statesman to stand out at the time for his Christian convictions — indeed, perhaps the only other — was Charles I, the last emperor of Austria and king of Hungary. In 1916, Charles inherited the throne of the Austro-Hungarian Empire when his great uncle, Emperor Franz Josef, died. Charles was only 29 at the time, and World War I was well under way, but the young Catholic monarch went to work trying to restrain the conflict and ultimately bring it to a close. He did so because he believed in peace and hated war, and because he believed the teachings of his Church could actually be implemented in the modern world — not just regarded as ideals to be admired from afar.

The story of Charles I begins in August of 1887, when the future king was born, becoming the great nephew of the reigning Emperor Franz Josef, who had then already reigned for nearly 40 of his 68 years on the throne. Charles was the son of the Archduke Otto, who was the son of the Archduke Karl Ludwig, the emperor's brother. Charles's mother was Archduchess Maria Josefa, the daughter of King George of Saxony, and a devout Catholic. At the time of his birth, Charles was far from the throne, but because of a series of unexpected events — the suicide of Crown Prince Rudolf (the Emperor's son), and the death of Karl Ludwig (Charles's grandfather) — the young boy moved ever closer to the line of succession. At that point, the only people ahead of him to inherit the throne were his uncle, Franz Ferdinand (the eldest son of Karl Ludwig), and his uncle's children; but Franz Ferdinand married a non-royal woman and was obliged to sign away the rights of his children to the throne. So it was expected that after a significant reign of Franz Ferdinand, Charles would become emperor. But then the great shock which began the First World War struck: on June 28, 1914, while on tour in Sarajevo, Franz Ferdinand and his wife were assassinated by a Serb extremist.

Austria, appalled by this action, demanded that Serbia hand over those who plotted the murder, but Serbia balked, leading to a flurry of accusations and counter-accusations. Though no one knew so at the time, these acts of terror would lead to a chain reaction which led to the Great War, lasting four years, involving 30 nations, calling 50 million men to arms, sending 12 million to their deaths, and costing more than 300 billion dollars. It ended with the defeat of Austria-Hungary, Germany and Turkey (the principal Central Powers) by an alliance of Russia, France and Great Britain (the Entente Powers or Allies), joined by Japan, Italy, the United States, and various smaller nations.

The assassination of Franz Ferdinand, following the death of Karl Ludwig, meant that Charles I would become emperor as soon as the elderly Emperor Franz Josef died. Recognizing this fact, Charles's family began preparing him for his future, and were assisted by his wife. In 1911, Charles had married Princess Zita of Bourbon-Parma, the daughter of the duke of Parma, of the royal family in Italy. Humane, peace-loving and Catholic to the core, Zita was the ideal wife for Charles: she bore him eight children, and would become his rock of strength during the international and personal challenges which awaited him.

At the time Charles inherited the throne, the Austro-Hungarian Empire was a realm of 50 million people covering 11 different races. Since 1868, it had been a dual monarchy divided into two parts — one ruled from Vienna, the other (the Hungarian half) from Budapest, but both under one emperor.

The rise of German nationalism meant that there were groups conspiring to split up this Habsburg empire into its constituent nations. In German-speaking parts, the Pan-Germanist movement had made significant gains and its adherents wanted, ultimately, to unite the German-speaking parts of the Austrian Empire into the new German Empire. The latter, created in 1871 by Prussian leader Otto von Bismarck after a series of military conquests, brought together all the German states into one federal empire, including Catholic Bavaria, which maintained a certain independence and freedom.

Unfortunately, as soon as the new empire was created, Bismarck and his colleagues became more and more power-hungry, encroaching upon the legitimate rights of Catholics, leading to an all-out assault against the Catholic Church during the so-called Kulturkampf. Though defeated by the great Catholic leader of the time, Ludwig Windthorst, Bismarck's legacy of Prussian militarism and hostility toward the Catholic vision of life would return with a vengeance during the early 20th century.

When Emperor Charles came to the throne in 1916, Austria was bound in alliance with Germany, to whom it was militarily inferior. Charles tried everything he could to persuade the German Emperor William II to sue for peace, but to no avail. As the War raged on, William II became more and more a tool of his generals, who were Prussian militarists and bellicose nationalists. (How the latter manipulated a generation of young soldiers to fight and die in a senseless war is captured in Eric Remarque's classic novel All Quiet on the Western Front.) As fate would have it, two of Zita's brothers, including Prince Sixtus of Bourbon-Parma, were serving with the Belgians, whose neutrality had been violated by the Germans on August 4, 1914, when the latter invaded the country, thereby making Austria, linked with Germany, Belgium's enemy. With the support of Charles, Zita wrote a heartfelt plea to Sixtus in a secret attempt to bring about peace: "Do not let yourself be held by considerations which in ordinary life would be justified. Think of all the unfortunates who live in the hell of the trenches and die there every day by the hundreds, and come!" Sixtus accepted the offer, and it was Sixtus whom Charles employed to make a peace offering to the Allied governments at war with Germany and Austria.

Charles's peace proposals were far?reaching, intelligent and wise. The young emperor, knowing that all sides would have to make compromises to create peace, was willing to make considerable concessions. Thus he offered to cede Alsace-Lorraine, a territory which was traditionally Habsburg but then currently in German hands. Tragically, the delicate strategy laid out by Charles was repeatedly betrayed by the Allies, who tried to take advantage of Charles at every juncture and were never serious about establishing an early peace.

The cruelest blow was struck by France. The new French prime minister, Clemenceau, who had taken over in November 1917, was a notorious anti-clerical who hated the Habsburg monarchy, and would stop at nothing to humiliate and defeat it. On April 12, 1918, he published Charles' peace proposals in full, creating shock waves throughout Europe. Germany's militarists exploded in indignation, furious at Charles's willingness to make concessions to negotiate away Alsace-Lorraine (and much else besides) for the sake of peace. After his peace initiatives were publicized, Charles wrote to William, emperor to emperor, warning him that, in the aftermath of the Bolshevik Revolution (October 1917), the real enemy of Europe was Bolshevism, and hence the War needed to end as soon as possible for the salvation of Europe. (Germany, against the advice of Charles, had already allowed Lenin to travel through its territory to create havoc in Russia, Germany's enemy. This shortsighted decision didn't help Germany win the war, of course, but did help establish Communism in Russia, creating untold suffering for future generations). William, still under the thumb of his generals, was no more open to reason than before.

After the Americans entered the War on the side of the Allied nations in 1917, Charles immediately recognized the futility of the struggle, but the Germans carried on, with vain hopes of an ultimate victory. When the war finally came to a halt a year later, the Allies, bitter about the human and economic cost of the War, imposed the notorious Treaty of Versailles on Germany, extracting a draconian price from the defeated nation — creating smoldering resentments which would later be exploited by Hitler during his rise to power.

But the real victim was Austria. At the war's end, the Austro-Hungarian Empire — unlike even Germany, which was kept essentially intact — was forcibly dissolved, and entirely new nations were created based upon arbitrarily drawn boundaries, with anti-Catholic socialists, Communists and nationalists in control of the new territories. The Austrian Empire, headed by a Catholic emperor, was hated because of its Catholicism.

Austria, which had acted in self-defense, and which had had a legitimate "casus belli" because Franz Ferdinand had been assassinated, was dismantled.

Germany, whose militarism was greatly responsible for many of the horrors which had taken place, was humiliated but not dismantled. How desirable would it have been had the Austro-Hungarian Empire survived, and had Germany once again become a confederation of states, as it was prior to Bismarck, when peace and security for all parties reigned. Royal Austria was the only true barrier to Communism and Nazism, but now that its traditional government was shattered, a path had been created for the 20th century's two greatest evils.

Reflecting on the tragedy of Charles's rejected peace proposals and the irrational hatred of monarchy, Anatole France, a leftist no less, commented: "No one will ever persuade me that the War could not have ended long ago. The Emperor Charles offered peace. There is the only honest man to occupy an important position during the War, but he was not listened to. In my opinion, his offer ought to have been accepted. The Emperor Charles has a sincere desire for peace so everybody hates him . . . A king of France, yes, a king would have taken pity on our poor people, bled white, attenuated, at the end of their strength. But democracy is without heart, without guts. A slave to the power of money, it is pitiless and inhuman."

Charles was compelled to sign a withdrawal of power but was careful never to sign an abdication document, despite various threats against him and his family by the "democratic" and "republican" forces then in control. After two abortive attempts to regain the throne of Hungary, Charles was taken, in 1921, to the Portuguese island of Madeira, where he would live in poverty with Zita and their eight children. Within a year, he caught pneumonia and fell seriously ill. On April 1, 1922, after receiving the last rites, and surrounded by his loving family, Charles died a quiet death at just 34 years of age.

The life and faith of Charles I might have become a mere footnote to history by now, were it not for a dedicated group of followers who have fought to preserve his reputation — often against historical revisionists who have tried to besmirch the late Emperor's reputation (due to a hatred of the Catholic faith and/or a reflexive hostility toward monarchies of all kinds, however just and humane). Among Charles's many followers was Dietrich von Hildebrand, the late Catholic philosopher, called a modern-day "Doctor of the Church" by Pope Pius XII.

Now, thanks to his widow, Dr. Alice von Hildebrand, a noted scholar in her own right and author of a biography of her husband, The Soul of a Lion (Ignatius, 2000), new testimony about the late Emperor Charles I — known as Kaiser Karl in Germany — is emerging.

Before his death, Dietrich von Hildebrand wrote his private memoirs, which exceed over 5,000 pages and remain unpublished. In light of the beatification of Charles I, Alice recently translated key sections of Dietrich's memoirs into English, and allowed the present writer to edit and publish them, for the first time, in Inside the Vatican. Extracts follow here below.

In a section entitled "Kaiser Karl," von Hildebrand provides some marvelous vignettes of the late monarch and offers testimony underscoring his holiness. This section speaks of Friedrich Wilhelm Foerster, German professor of pedagogy, who had a great influence on von Hildebrand, helping him realize the evil of Prussian militarism and nationalism at a time when both were rampant. Von Hildebrand wrote that Foerster "wrote me a letter in which he informed me that he had a private talk with Kaiser Karl (at the request of the latter), the purpose of which was that the emperor wished to discuss with Foerster a plan to build up a federalist government in Austria, in which the rights of the Slavic minority would be fully acknowledged and respected. Foerster wrote me how deeply impressed he was by Karl, only 29 years old at the time: 'He is a real Christian and a real prince.'"

Von Hildebrand continues:

"This information gave me great joy, for I loved and revered this saintly monarch. As soon as he inherited the throne upon the death of Franz Josef (his great uncle), animated by true Christian courage, he ordered that any officer involved in a duel would be excluded from the army. Up to that time, even though the State prohibited dueling, the 'honor' of an officer required that one had to accept a duel when challenged to do so or when one's 'honor' had been offended. He who refused the challenge lost his 'honor' and had to leave the army. Kaiser Karl, who truly wanted to follow the guidance of Pius X's [motto] "instaurare omnia in Christo," ["to establish all things in Christ," Ephesians, 1:10] wanted to ban, once and for all, this unchristian practice — the so-called 'officer's honor.' That great pressure was put on an officer to commit a sin, was shameful; moreover he was obliged to leave the army if he refused to comply. This order was a victory over human respect and called for true Christian courage; for courage was necessary in order to eliminate the horrible prejudices and practices, alas, deeply rooted in the army.

"This decision alone was enough to justify my admiration and respect for him.

"Moreover, he granted a pardon to Kramarsch on the grounds that he rightly suspected that he was the victim of prejudices against the Czechs. Once again, he was guided by his deeply Christian Weltanschauung [worldview].

"He tried desperately to follow the lead of Benedict XV, who implored the leaders of the dreadful conflict that was leading to the ruin of Europe, to make peace — a peace in which there would be no victors. Karl asked his brother-in-law, Sixtus von Bourbon, to act as intermediary. As mentioned, Foerster met the emperor in one of his palaces. Their discussion took place in the park (Foerster's biography, Erlebte Weltgeschichte 1869?1953, p. 193) for fear of spies. The aim was to build a cabinet based on a federalistic program: so that each segment of the Austrian Empire (made up of Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Austria and parts of Yugoslavia) would be fairly represented. The Kaiser realized how crucial it was for the survival of the empire that there should be harmony between these various nationalities and languages. He urged educators to emphasize the virtues and merits of the Czechs to the Germans, and of the Germans to the Czechs. Prejudices had to be overcome and eliminated in a truly Christian spirit. The poison of nationalism had to be uprooted at all cost.

"Unfortunately, this meeting led nowhere; spies had done their work, and this secret encounter came to the knowledge of the unfortunate Count Czernin [Austria's foreign minister], who passed it on to the Germans. The Kaiser was a de facto prisoner of the German army. The original plan was to build this cabinet unbeknownst to the Germans, so that it would come as a complete surprise. It would of course entail a break with Germany.

"To my great sorrow, Kaiser Karl died on April 1st, 1922.

"I nourished a real veneration for this saintly man and hoped with all my heart that he would be reinstated as emperor of Austria. How deeply I had followed the events which took place in Hungary, and how his exile (banishment) had outraged me.

"Thanks to the kindness of the venerated and beloved Archduchess Maria Josefa, I was given a beautiful photograph of His Majesty. I gave it to the Theatiner Verlag [a publishing house von Hildebrand had founded] and they printed a very good death memorial. [It is a European tradition that when a person dies his relatives print a card with his photo, the dates of his birth and death and a few pious words referring to his life.] The outside was a beautiful old picture; the inside, his photo, with the words: 'I have loved justice and hated iniquity. For this reason, I am dying in exile,' the words of St. Gregory VII, who also died in exile in Salerno. I also added the following words: 'If the grain does not die and fall into the earth . . .'

"The Archduchess Maria Josefa was very pleased with it. I visited her from time to time and my relationship with her developed more and more. I paid her visits in her palace in the Ludwigstrasse in Munich. She also came to visit us at our home, Maria Theresia Strasse."

In December 1933, Dietrich von Hildebrand was invited to give talks at the Catholic University of Louvain in Belgium. He wished to combine this trip with a visit to the widow of Kaiser Karl, Empress Zita, who was living outside of Brussels at the time. As he was working for Austria's Dollfuss government, he went to see Weber (an assistant of Chancellor Dollfuss) for permission. The latter told him that he had no objection, provided that this visit would have an exclusively private character. Von Hildebrand looked forward with eagerness to making the acquaintance of Kaiser Karl's widow. He knew her mother-in-law, the Archduchess Maria Josefa, well: for she was one of the most faithful guests at the intellectual and religious afternoons he held from 1924 to 1931 in his father's mansion (in which he was living). He also knew several relatives of Zita (e.g., the Countess Bardi, among others). But he had not yet met Zita herself.

Recalling these events, von Hildebrand wrote: "The great event of my trip to Belgium was my visit to Steenockerzeel (outside of Brussels where the empress was living). This visit took place most probably after I had finished giving my talks at Louvain. I went there from Brussels. The castle was an enchanting building dating from the Middle Ages. It was surrounded by water, and one had to cross a small bridge in order to enter it. I was received by Count Trautmansdorff and Count Czernin [a loyal assistant to Empress Zita, not to be confused with the aforementioned, duplicitous Austrian foreign minister who betrayed Charles]. They announced my arrival to the empress. I had made myself elegant wearing a cutaway suit.

"Zita made a very great impression on me. She had a noble, aristocratic face — a mixture of strength and delicacy in her bearing. She was incredibly attractive. She incarnated the great Austrian tradition, its noble culture, but at the same time she had her own strong individuality. Through her 'courtly' form, one sensed her noble, spiritual warmth in all her words and demeanor.

"I told her that I had long been an ardent admirer of Kaiser Karl — something she already knew because of his death memorial I had printed in 1922. A long, deep talk developed. Zita shared with me many details from her husband's life which moved me deeply. [Von Hildebrand could not recall whether what he then wrote was told him in 1933, or in 1938, when he had the privilege of seeing Zita for the second time; but he remarks that the main thing is to relate what she told him, irrespective of the time.]

"She told me that he [Charles I] never had distractions during Mass. He had received the exceptional grace that during the divine Sacrifice and the reception of Holy Communion, he was so absorbed in Christ that his surroundings vanished from his consciousness. The result was that when the sacristan came with the basket to collect money, he never noticed him. Zita drew his attention to the fact that this could trigger scandal; one could interpret this as stinginess on his part if he did not contribute to the collection. Karl then decided that at the beginning of Mass he would hold money in his hand so that he would make sure not to forget his donation. But as soon as the service started, he was once again so absorbed in prayer that at the end of Mass the money was still in his hand.

"Once Bishop Beidl came to hear their confession. As Zita came out of the confessional and his [Charles's] turn came, he hesitated for a moment and said to her that he was not yet sufficiently prepared. She told him: 'You cannot let the bishop wait; you could tell him that you have been absent-minded during Mass.' To which Karl impulsively answered: 'I cannot say that because it is not true.' She was amazed and could not help but say: 'This is something truly extraordinary.' Shyly, he answered: 'This just happens to be my temperament (disposition). There is no virtue on my part. It is simply a gift I have received.' This confirmed that he never knew temptations or distraction during Mass.

"Then she told me about the tragic episode when — as prisoners — they were exiled from Austria. They were put on a shabby boat traveling down the Danube to the Black Sea and finally to Constantinople. From there another ship was to take them to Madeira. (Many countries had refused to give them asylum; they were a political liability.) As they were coming close to Constantinople and the lights of the city were becoming visible, she could not help but exclaim: 'How very different from our last trip,' referring to the triumphant voyage they had taken when they became emperor and empress of the Austrian Empire and were received with the pomp and glory due to sovereigns.

"Karl answered: 'I am concerned about something very different: namely how very few people live in this great city who have the true faith and love Christ.' This made a deep impression upon me, and confirmed my conviction that Karl was indeed a saintly man.

"We also turned to other topics: the political situation of the world, and very particularly of Austria. There was, of course, a total unity of views concerning Nazism. Zita, however, could not fully share my enthusiasm for Dollfuss — something quite understandable, being a legitimist. I also was given an opportunity to make the acquaintance of the heir to the Austrian throne: Otto. He was still very young at the time — nineteen or twenty. [Otto, still living, was born in 1912.] He also made a deep impression upon me. He greeted me very warmly and expressed his appreciation for the journal I had founded in Vienna. He told me that he read it 'with joy,' even though only 'in diagonal,' meaning that he did not read every single article of the publication. We had a lively and interesting talk, and I was impressed by his intelligence and how well informed he was about the problems in Austria. He was a very handsome young man, and his personality had something enchanting.

"I left, very pleased about this visit.

"At this time [circa 1936] I made the acquaintance of the previous adjutant of Kaiser Karl who, later, headed an organization for the protection of authors' rights in Germany. He filled this position until Hitler took over. He was then forced to give it up. Unfortunately I do not recall the name of this very attractive and extraordinarily interesting man. What he told me about Karl fascinated and enchanted me, and once again confirmed my conviction that he was a saintly man. What he told me about Horthy and the events which took place in Hungary in 1921 were of the greatest interest for me.

"He related to me how Horthy became president. As Colonel Lehar had defeated the Communists, he was looking for a representative personality who would solemnly enter Budapest with the troops. He himself felt that he could not fulfill this role. He spoke with Horthy, who was admiral in the emperor's government (Regierung). He asked the latter if he would be willing to take this role, but under the condition that he would do so as mere representative of the Kaiser, and would commit himself not to do anything opposed to his intentions. Horthy responded: 'I will fulfill this role exclusively as representative of the emperor. Should I do anything opposed to his intentions, anyone would have the right to spit in my face, as a dishonorable blackguard!'

"On these conditions, Lehar appointed him to enter Budapest. Horthy did so and entered Budapest on a white horse in the most solemn fashion.

"But soon it became clear that he was breaking his promise. Karl had commanded that a bloodbath was to be avoided at all costs and that the laws should be respected. Only those who had committed crimes were to be prosecuted, but all others should be treated with great mercy. But Horthy, defying all these orders, gave the 'white' troops free rein to give expression to their vengeance. The usual scenario took place — a copy of what took place in Munich in 1919 after the Communist Revolution. In response to the atrocities committed by the latter, there followed a bloodbath allowed by the victors. All the recommendations given by Karl through Colonel Lehar were trampled underfoot. All this must be realized in order to understand the second attempt made by Karl as king of Hungary to regain the reins of the State.

"He was convinced that it was his duty to follow the wish of those who wanted him to continue to be their king — having witnessed how little Horthy had paid attention to his orders. He was convinced that he should oppose the fascist course chosen by Horthy and Gomboes, to defend the rights of a democratic monarchy.

"He [the adjutant] then mostly told me about the second attempt made by the Kaiser, and Horthy's shameful betrayal when Gomboes attacked the train in which the Kaiser found himself. As the adjutant and another man saw that everything was lost, and that Horthy had betrayed them, they wanted to take their lives. Both had told Karl that they trusted Horthy. Understandably, they felt guilty. Another adjutant informed Kaiser Karl of their intention. The latter immediately called them. It was on the way from Budapest to Gyoer. The Kaiser reminded them that suicide was a horrible crime, and forbade them solemnly to carry out their intentions. He told them as they were nearing Gyoer: 'I shall stand at the window so that I will draw everybody's attention on me. They intend to imprison me. When they will rush on me to take hold of me, both of you will have time to step out on the other side of the train and escape. I am giving you all the money I have with me. It should be sufficient for you to survive until you arrive in Germany.' Both men said goodbye to the emperor. His plan for their escape worked as predicted. Upon arrival he stood at the window of the coupe, drew all attention on himself, and during the confusion that was taking place, the two men ran off. They swam through the Danube and reached Czechoslovakia and then Germany.

"This narration which he etched so vividly and convincingly moved me deeply. It revealed once again Karl's incredible nobility: his only concern was what was pleasing to God, and what offended Him. The welfare of others had absolute priority over his own. Joyfully he was ready to sacrifice himself for his friends. Horthy's shameless betrayal was news to me. I had already been informed through Thoroek Pallaghy and my friend Seeburg that Horthy had behaved shamefully toward his emperor. But the promise he had made to Colonel Lehar was unknown to me.

"Karl was exiled in Madeira. He became ill and one day said to Zita: 'God is asking us to make a great sacrifice.' Deeply shaken, she asked him, 'Your life?' He nodded. God called this great and faithful servant soon afterwards; he was just 34 years of age, and his last child, Elizabeth, was not yet born."

Bibliography:

"Emperor Charles I: World War I Peace Campaigner," by James Bogle, AD 2000, April 1996.

"Charles I of Austria-Hungary, Saint in the Heart of Europe and in the Heart of God," by Father Barry E.B. Swain, Pascha Nostrum, Church of the Resurrection (New York) Newsletter, January 2004.

A Heart for Europe, by Joanna and James Bogle (Herefordshire: Gracewing, 1993).

The Last Habsburg, by Gordon Brook-Shepherd (London: Weidenfeld and Nicholson, 1968).

The Emperor Karl, by Arthur, Count Polzer-Hoditz (New York: Putnam, 1930).

© Urbi et Orbi Communications

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