"Conversion of Russia" Update:
Vatican Affirms Its Commitment to the
Non-Conversion of Russia
by Christopher A. Ferrara
A recent report by Zenit.org on the meeting between Vladimir Putin and the Pope this past November 5 reveals that the post-Fatima agenda of the Vatican apparatus remains firmly in place. The report by Zenit reporter Delia Gallagher (November 14, 2003) notes that “Putin met for 45 minutes with the Pope, their longest meeting so far. During the meeting, Putin kissed the icon of Kazan and told the Holy Father that he would talk to Russian Orthodox Patriarch Alexy II upon his return.”
Gosh, Putin will actually talk to Alexy II? What a breakthrough! The report observes that Putin’s visit comes “In the midst of internal political difficulties and international skepticism that Putin’s Russia is returning to its authoritarian past, with the arrest of prominent businessmen …” But there is no such skepticism among the Fatima revisionists, who periodically trot out their new version of Sister Lucy, who says that Russia has already “converted” because it allows “freedom of choice”.
Putin reportedly told the Italian daily Corriere della Sera “My personal position is that it’s important to make every effort in favor of unity among the various Christian confessions. … I consider it my objective not so much making it possible for the Pope to come to Russia, as much as favoring Christian unity with every opportune step.” But “Christian unity” Putin-style is the same as “peaceful coexistence” Khrushchev-style — the Russian party must advance its position, while the Western party retreats. In this case, the Moscow patriarchate of the Russian Orthodox Church must benefit at the expense of Rome.
And Rome — meaning the current Vatican apparatus — is only too happy to oblige. Zenit cites an unnamed Vatican official who says that in the current conduct of Catholic-Orthodox relations, “There is a great difference in mentality … Many people don’t realize that the Catholic Church actually gives money to the Orthodox, through Aid to the Church in Need and other such structures. … The Catholic Church cannot substitute the Orthodox Church. We do not want to.”
Yet again a member of the Vatican apparatus affirms that any effort to bring about the return of the Russian Orthodox to Rome has been abandoned — along with the Message of Fatima itself. The Vatican’s notion of “Christian unity” now coincides perfectly with the Kremlin’s. This is the great result of the so-called “consecration of Russia” back in 1984. With a conversion like this, who needs schism?