TAKEN FROM THE TESTIMONY OF A NEPHEW OF POPE PIUS XII
"Pius XII loved concretely and not in words, all human beings especially those who suffered. This love led him to want to suffer like them, to impose on himself the same privations under which they were forced undergo. During the war he knew that many men suffering from hunger, and he deprived himself of food that he could have had in abundance. When the bombing began, many people remained homeless and were forced to deal with the rigors of the cold without heating, with few clothes in conditions of severe poverty. Thinking about those families, Pius XII during the war, did not wish his apartment to be heated. His hands and feet are swollen, full of chilblains. He found it difficult to type, to hold the pen in his hand, he was not in good health, but he still would not heat his apartment. When sugar and coffee became scarce in Italy, my uncle stopped drinking coffee and until the end of the war drank not one more cup of coffee. He sent the stocks of sugar and coffee in the Vatican to the city's hospitals for the sick.
In public, my uncle would always look perfect, flawless. He represented the Church, he felt so strongly the meaning of the supreme dignity of his office. His behavior and his clothes, outwardly, were impeccable as those of a sovereign. But in fact he was very poor. After his death, we found that his bedding was poor: he had only three shirts, which were worn and patched, he would often changed the starched cuffs, only because those could be seen. He had two or three pairs of shoes which were continuously adjusted and resoled. During the war years he gave everything he had to the poor, all the money he received. When he died, he left nothing to anyone, because he had nothing. As we all were able to see looking at the photographs published after his death, he slept in a bare room, on a cot of iron. "