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Maly Library Receives Rare Documents 8/23/2012

Father Gerald E. Bensman, a retired priest of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, served as a stenographer at the Second Vatican Council, while he was a seminarian in Rome. He attended the first three sessions of the Council, transcribing the talks given by the Council fathers and keeping the official record of the Council. Additionally, he typed "Council Digests" or English language summaries of the speeches given at Vatican II for the American Bishops.

Father Bensman decided to donate over 116 documents and 91 Council Digests to Mount St. Mary's Seminary and the Eugene Maly Library. The materials include the original drafts of the documents of Vatican II, their revisions and emendations. They will soon be available for scholarly use. Connie Song, the Director of the Maly Library, was happy to receive the gift today. Fr. Bensman had carefully organized and preserved the materials.

Father Bensman also donated the Smith-Corona typewriter which he used during the Council. It will be part of a display for the Year of Faith, commemorating the 50th anniversary of the opening of the Council. Also on display are a Latin stenography book and three medallions that were given to Fr. Bensman to commemorate the opening of the first three sessions of the Council. These will be part of a larger display as the Athenaeum celebrates the Year of Faith.


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