"Conversion of Russia" Update:
Vatican Admits Church Paralyzed in Russia
by Christopher A. Ferrara
Responding to the demand of Russian “nationalist” Vladimir Zhirinovsky that Russia’s Duma take measures to prevent “Catholic expansionism” in Russia, the Vatican’s apostolic administrator for Russia, Archbishop Tadeusz Kondrusiewicz, says that “claims of ‘Catholic expansionism’ in Russia are a result of ‘a series of misunderstandings caused by insufficient information’.” [ZENIT.org-FIDES, March 14, 2001).
In other words, the Russians should have no worries about the Catholic Church expanding in Russia, because current conditions make that impossible — and the Vatican wants to make that very clear!
According to Zenit news agency “The Vatican agency Fides said Orthodox sources insisted that the number of foreign Catholic missionaries and religious in the Russian Federation is excessive.” But the Vatican insists, on the contrary, that the Catholic Church poses absolutely no threat to Orthodox hegemony because it doesn’t even have a sufficient presence in Russia to serve even the Catholics already there, let alone to make converts among the Orthodox. According to Fides, “to reach the millions of Catholics dispersed over the vast territory of the Russian Federation, at least 600 priests are needed, three times the 200 operating at present.” That is, the Catholic Church in Russia has only one-third the priests it needs.
The Church in Russia is even feebler than that. Fides also noted that of the 200 priests in Russia, “many of these, unable to obtain residence permits, have periodically to leave the country and then return again.” This number includes Father Stanislaw Opiela, secretary of the Catholic bishops’ conference, who has just been denied a reentry visa for the third time.
As if to put all fears of “Catholic expansionism” to rest, Fides also protested that “Another factor against Catholic ‘expansion’ is the lack of infrastructure. Russian Catholic parishes and communities have retrieved less than 20% of the Church property that they had prior to 1930.”
So, the Vatican itself concedes that the Catholic Church in Russia today has about one-third the priests it needs and has recovered less than 20% of the Church properties it had under Josef Stalin (before Stalin confiscated the properties and turned them over to the Orthodox puppet-church controlled by the KGB).
So this is where we stand some 17 years after the putative “consecration” of Russia in 1984: the Vatican protests, as if it were a calumny, the accusation that it wishes to expand in Russia; it points out that the Church is in no position to make any converts in the Russian Federation because it cannot even serve the existing faithful. Any thought of Catholic expansion among the members of the Russian parliament is just “a misunderstanding” based on “insufficient information” about how badly off the Church in Russia really is. Don’t worry, Russian “right-wingers”: the Catholic Church in Russia is paralyzed.
“In the end, My Immaculate Heart will triumph. The Holy Father will consecrate Russia to me, which will be converted.” Not according to the Vatican. The conversion of Russia is no longer seen as an ineluctable prophecy of the Mother of God, but as an accusation to be denied by a Vatican press agency.
Father Fox and the other Fatima revisionists should be ashamed.