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“Conversion of Russia” Update:

The KGB Past of Alexy II

by Christopher A. Ferrara

During his visit to the Ukraine, John Paul II was snubbed by Russian Orthodox Patriarch Alexy II, who controls the Ukrainian Orthodox Church from Moscow. The Pope was likewise snubbed by Ukrainian Orthodox Metropolitan Vladimir, who was “out of town” during the visit. Alexy had clearly yanked the strings on his marionette.

Alexy and Vladimir, you see, are outraged that Ukrainian Catholics, now that communism has “fallen”, would presume to seek the recovery of Catholic Church properties expropriated by Josef Stalin in 1946-48, in connection with his imprisonment or execution of all the Catholic clergy of the Ukraine. Stalin allowed the Orthodox Church, once it too was purged of all resistant clergy, to continue to exist — provided it offered no opposition to Stalin’s regime and would serve essentially as a nest of spies for the KGB. (Stalin reduced about 50,000 Orthodox clergy to about 500 KGB-controlled clerics.)

In essence, for the past 55 years the Ukrainian Orthodox Church has been fattened by the stolen patrimony of Catholics, and it has no intention of letting go of its ill-gotten goods. Alexy is orchestrating the opposition to Ukrainian Catholicism, as well as the suppression of the Church in Russia, which is hemmed in by impossible legal restrictions.

Just who is this Alexy? According to the Moscow Times (June 26, 2001), an independent English-language journal published (at least for now) in Moscow, Alexy II was known as Alexei Ridiger before he was suddenly elevated to the Moscow Patriarchate in the early 1990s. The Moscow Times notes that in the early '90s “many religious leaders in post-Soviet Russia were accused by their own colleagues and by the press of making deals with the devil — with the KGB — during Soviet times. The accusations ranged from betraying confessions given in church to state organs, to ‘bringing in line’ dissident monks. One of those who was exposed by the KGB archives as an agent named ‘Drozdov’, who was awarded an honorary citation by the KGB chairman, was said to be Alexei Ridiger, shortly thereafter promoted to the position of patriarch.”

So, there is documentary evidence that Patriarch Alexy II was a KGB operative. A promised investigation of Alexy’s past by the Orthodox hierarchy was killed by Alexy himself, says the Moscow Times. And the same is true with the investigation of communist crimes in general promised by Boris Yeltsin. “Yeltsin just ended up quickly reclassifying the files once declared open.” To this day, not a single “ex-communist” has been called to account for crimes against the Russian people. Small wonder. The same criminals are running Russia today.

The Moscow Times makes an observation that is surely lost on the dunderheads of Fatima revisionism: “So it is no surprise that while these Central European countries (Poland and the Czech Republic) are clearly moving toward becoming part of the civilized world, Russia is heading in the opposite direction. The message of intolerance and confrontation delivered over the weekend by the patriarch is just one more sign of that.” Well, one can certainly disagree about whether Eastern Europe is becoming “civilized” by joining the pro-abortion, decadent West. But the point is that even here Russia is moving from bad to worse: all the decadence of the West but little or no real liberty. Meanwhile, the dominant religion in Russia is headed by a “patriarch” who has blocked any investigation of his KGB past, while working to limit the freedom of the Catholic Church in Russia.

And this, they ask us to believe, is the “conversion” of Russia promised by the Blessed Virgin Mary at Fatima. If this is Russia’s conversion, I would hate to see its apostasy.