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“Conversion of Russia” Update

Putin Preparing to Shut Down Religion in Russia

by Christopher A. Ferrara

Now that he is the neo-Stalinist dictator of “converted” Russia, Vladimir Putin is preparing to do what all Stalinist dictators do: outlaw organized religion.

On June 10, 2005, reported that “In what seems the most serious proposal in recent years to tighten up Russia’s 1997 religion law, parliament’s religion committee has begun to consider four draft amendments. …” The 1997 law is the one that essentially reduced the Catholic Church to the status of a foreign sect whose priests are allowed only three-month visas and whose parishes must be registered with local bureaucrats, who can revoke the registrations at will. Since 1997, the key clerics of the Catholic apparatus in Russia, including the Bishop of Siberia (where most of the tiny minority of Russian Catholics reside) and the secretary of the Russian bishop’s conference have been expelled.

According to CWN, “the proposed amendments would make it impossible for unregistered religious organizations to hold large meetings, and would allow only centralized religious organizations to invite foreign visitors to participate in their work. ‘If we invite a priest to Moscow as the center of the diocese and he is to work in a completely different place, such as Kaliningrad, it will take a long time to explain to officials there why the invitation came from Moscow,’ Moscow-based Catholic Archbishop Tadeusz Kondrusiewicz warned.”

CWN further reports that “Aleksandr Verkhovsky, editor at Sova Centre in Moscow, complained of another ‘dangerous’ amendment allowing all religious communities applying for registration to have their religious doctrines analyzed. ‘This is undesirable by its very nature in a secular society; a state should not determine which [religion] is right and which is not…’.”

But that is exactly what the proposed amendments — which, of course, would pass with little opposition in the Putin-controlled Russian parliament — will mean for the Catholic Church in Russia: Her very doctrines will be analyzed by neo-Soviet bureaucrats whenever parishes seek government registration.

CWN notes that Russian commentators are “skeptical” that the amendments will pass. But whether or not these particular items of legislation are finally enacted, this much is clear: the Catholic Church is under persecution in Putin’s neo-Stalinist Russia. What more proof do we need that Heaven is not pleased with the “consecration” of 1984? Here, yet again, we see evidence of a Fatima curse: a chastisement of Russia owing to the failure of the ministers of the Catholic Church to do as God commanded through the Virgin of Fatima.