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“Conversion of Russia” Update:

Russian Officials Halt Construction of Catholic Parish

by Christopher A. Ferrara

In a previous column I discussed a fundraising solicitation by an organization known as Aid to the Church in Russia. In a letter signed by Archbishop Kondrusiewicz (who has been named the Archbishop of the Archdiocese of the Mother of God at Moscow), ACR pleads for funds so that it can build a headquarters for the Catholic Church in Moscow. The headquarters is needed because currently the nerve center of the Catholic Church in Russia consists of a few rooms in a Moscow apartment, and meetings are being conducted in a kitchen. The fundraising piece warns that if funds are not raised and construction completed soon, the permission to build could be revoked at any time before there is a functioning building.

That fear has proven to be well founded. On April 12, 2002, Catholic News Service reported that “Local officials, under pressure from Russian Orthodox believers, halted construction of a new Catholic church in northern Russia, prompting an outcry from Catholic leaders.” Archbishop Kondrusiewicz warned that “This is a very dangerous precedent” and that the action by Russian officials “could turn into a wave of anti-Catholic demonstrations, the results of which are impossible to predict.”

According to CNS “The rector of the Catholic church in Pskov, about 170 miles southwest of St. Petersburg, was served notice April 3 that the regional planning authority was ordering a halt to construction of the church and rectory complex in the center of the city to conduct additional reviews and solicit public opinion.” Additional reviews and solicitation of public opinion! So now the very existence of Catholic churches in Russia depends upon bureaucratic reviews and public opinion polls — and this in a nation where the average woman has five abortions in her lifetime.

But what has happened to the “miraculous” transformation of Russia following the consecration of the world to the Immaculate Heart in 1984? Quite simply, the miraculous transformation never happened because Russia was never consecrated to the Immaculate Heart.

Ah, but there I go focusing on facts again. Have we not been “authoritatively informed” by Cardinal Sodano, Cardinal Ratzinger and Archbishop Bertone that Russia was properly consecrated to Mary by means of a consecration of the world some 18 years ago, and that we must never - no never, not ever! — bring up the subject of Russia’s consecration again? What need do we have for anything as bothersome as evidence, when these “authorities” on Fatima have spoken?

Well, as the saying goes, there is no argument against a fact. No authority, however high, can tell us that the Eiffel Tower is in Saint Peter’s Square and expect us to believe it. And no authority can tell us that Russia has been consecrated to the Immaculate Heart of Mary when nothing Our Lady promised as the result of such a consecration has come to pass.

The Vatican’s Fatima Folly goes on, and Russia continues to suffer for it, along with the rest of the world.