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“Conversion of Russia” Update:

They Hate the Very Sight of Him

by Christopher A. Ferrara

On Saturday, March 2, 2002, the Pope — having been unable to crack the wall of Russian Orthodox resistance to his mere presence on Russian soil — appeared by television hookup during a prayer service at Moscow’s Cathedral of the Assumption.

Oddly enough, the national broadcast media now under the thumb of Vladimir (“the practicing Christian”) Putin boycotted the broadcast, which could be received only on some television screens set up at the Cathedral. Even the equipment for the broadcast had to be shipped into Russia, where it was held up by customs until the last minute.

As reported by the BBC, Russian Patriarch Alexy II (whose KGB past has been noted in this column) “condemned a live link-up between Pope John Paul II and Roman Catholics in Russia. He said the television link amounted to a ‘virtual visit’ by the Roman Catholic leader, with whom the Russian church has strained relations.”

Strained relations with the Catholic Church? After the “consecration of Russia” in 1984? Impossible! Russia has been undergoing a “conversion” since then, say the Fatima revisionists. It’s a MIR-acle!

Funny, but Alexy hasn’t noticed the miraculous conversion of Russia. Quite the contrary, he denounced the Pope’s televised image as — get this — “an ‘invasion of Russia’ and referred to the Polish occupation of Moscow in the early 17th century. John Paul is of Polish origin.”

The BBC notes that Alexy and his schismatic church have “long opposed a visit by the Pope to Russia, where there are an estimated 600,000 Roman Catholics among the population of some 148 million. It [the Russian Orthodox Church] objected to the Pope’s visits last year to Kazakhstan and then the Ukraine, where there is a bitter wrangle over church property. The Orthodox Church protested against the Pope’s visit to the Ukraine.”

In short, Alexy and his fellow heirs of Stalin’s plunder of the Roman Catholic Church in the 1940s do not want the Pope anywhere near Russia. They hate the very sight of the Pope on a television screen. The Vatican’s attempt to erect dioceses in Russia has only increased the hatred. In fact, as the BBC observes (quoting its analyst of Soviet affairs), “such is the bitterness generated by the issue that a live link-up on a television screen will now be the closest the present Pope will ever get to making a visit to Russia.”

Meanwhile, the Orthodox Church fails to attract more than four or five percent of its members to church on Sunday, and Russian women continue to have an average of four or five abortions each — abortion being free of charge in Russia, while contraceptives cost money.

This is the conversion of Russia? I don’t think so. Here at Fatima.org we have no intention of letting the Fatima revisionists off the hook. Day after day, week after week, month after month, God willing, we will hold the evidence up to their faces, helping as best we can to build the historical record of their folly.