..to a Christian in the hands of God, the cross
his shoulders is but a reward
. Felix Svetov (Zoya Krakhmalnikovas
each passing month there comes news of arrests, persecutions, further tightening
of control over religious activities. Recently the Soviet government has
forbidden the painting and selling of icons (apart from those prepared by the
Moscow Patriarchate). Persons found engaged in this are liable to be sentenced
under Article 162 of the Criminal Code: occupation by prohibited trade.
Even in the Moscow Patriarchate Factory in Sofino, where crosses and icons are
manufactured, they are avoiding the manufacture of paper and wooden icons which
are aesthetically pleasing and uplifting to the soul.
to information received in the West, Fr. Gleb Yakunin spent four months in
solitary confinement in the internal prison of labor camp No.37 in the Perm
region during the second half of last year.. His food ration during this period
was 11/2 lbs, of bread daily and a bowl of gruel every other day. He was allowed
no correspondence and had to sleep on the cell floor. Also, he was not allowed
to wear warm clothing The official
reason for this harsh treatment was that Fr. Gleb had engaged in "religious
agitation" among the young inmates of the camp.
us each turn to ourselves and ask, what is our response to all this,our
responsibility? Can we remain passive? Lent is a time of sacrifice, a time of
resolve. Let us not forget those who are with Christ on Golgotha. By taking the
time to pray for them, write to them, in giving ~ms to the Prisoner's Fund, we
can offer a sacrifice pleasing to God.
Solzhenitsyn was named winner of the . Templeton Foundation Prize for Progress
in Religion. In a message to John Templeton; the multimillionaire philanthropist
and financier, who established the prize in 1972, Solzhenitsyn said, "You
have the courage to support a trend which is most Un-popular in our days-when
prayers in school are forbidden even in a free country, it is not much more
tolerable than in Communist countries, only that it lacks the hammering in of
citation accompanying the award says, "Alexander Solzhenitsyn is a pioneer
in the renaissance of religion in atheist nations. . .His achievements have been
made possible by a profound Christian faith." (AP)
I thank you for your letter. Only God is my hope and my shield. I pray for all friends daily. I want to hope that you will receive my greeting too. May God bless you
underground press operated. in Moscow by a group of young Orthodox Christians
has been destroyed by the Soviet authorities. The group was arrested in April.
On Dec. 6, Viktor Burdytig was sentenced to 4 years deprivation of liberty and
Sergei Budarov, VladimirMudarov, Nikolai Blokhin, Alexander Sidorov and Igor
Kolyanov were sentenced to 3 years deprivation of liberty.
Stocks or literature, binding equipment and a duplicator were also confiscated. The group had been supplying prayer books at a nominal price to help satisfy the growing demand. It is likely that they have been charged under Article 162 of the Soviet Criminal Code concerning "engaging in forbidden trade."
Shchipkova, arrested in Jan. 1980 for her involvement in the Christian Seminar
("OA" August, 1981), has been released from prison on completion of
her sentence. During her
imprisonment she was denied treatment for an eye condition, advanced glaucoma,
and was unable to get the necessary medicines to prevent blindness.