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The Catholic times. [volume] (Columbus, Ohio) 1951-current, October 17, 1952, Image 4

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Published Every Week by
The Catholic Times, Inc.
Columbus. Ohio
NOTICE: Send All Changes ot Address to
P. O Box 636 Columbus. Ohio
Executive and Editorial Offices:
246 E. Town Street Columbus 15. Ohio
Telephones: ADams 5195 ADams 5196
Address all communications for publication
to O Box 636. Columbus 16. Ohio
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»uhscrrt« n- ahould be presented to our offiee through
..ir pastors of the parishes.
Remittances should be made parable to The Cath
olic Timet
Anonymous communications will be diwegarded
do nci hold oursehee responsible for any views
or opinions expressed in the communications of our
corresponden ta.
Entered a» Second. Class Matter at Post Offiee
Columbus. Ohio
St. hrancis de Sales, Patron of the Catholic Press
and of the Diocese of Columbus. Pray for Us I
This Paper Printed by Union Labor
Public Moral Sentiment
The Filipinos have a regard foi morality This
is evident from the fact that a movie star's box ot
fice falls off sharply when he or she becomes in
volved in a scandal v a result the Philippine stu
dios now insist that contracts with star performers
contain a morality clause binding the player to ob
serve proper moral standards in his or her private
life. Leaders in the movie industry in the Philip
pines testify already that the morality clauses have
helped increase box office receipts. One Filipino
producer has testified that in his country the movie
goer does not distinguish between a star’ home life
and her life on the screen. “A married actress,” he
said, “must play the role of a married woman on the
screen if she wants to hold on to her audience, and
an unmarried actress must portray only an unmar
ried screen heroine.
Alt this is a truly admirable example tn Amej
ica It is true that with us, the Legion of Decency
has done a great national service in its efforts to
keep the movies decent. But American public
morality and sentiment is not such as to be of
fended easily by the private life of a star performer.
Immorality would have to become quite serious and
public to affect the box office here
Also, the Filipino attitude could well that of
the American citizen toward those in public office.
Sometimes people who are scoundrels succeed in
getting elected to positions of public trust Some
times, too. people in such positions give bad moral
example. This seems not to disturb the American
public too much. However, any thinking person can
understand that people of good morals in their pri
vate lives would also be honest in then tenure ot
a public trust.
Religion is the basis of good morals, and any pub
lie moral attitude must stem from the religious con
victions of the citizenry. All attacks upon any con
nection between Church and State serve only to in
timidate any public expression of morality. Ftelig
mua convictions must therefore be strong and Icai
less if we are to have any increase in honesty and
decency in public office as well as in the movie
and TV entertainment world.
Answering Blanshard's
Sometimes one is tempted to be impatient with
much of the goings on in public and social life.
This is particularly so now that the political scene
is so confusing. However, occasionally something
most valuable come* to the patient soul. One such
experience to lie treasured was the address of Dr.
.lames O’Neill at the annual convention last week of
the Diocesan Council of Catholn Women
Dr. O'Neill is known for his splendid hook.
Catholicism and American Freedom which stands
as a scholarly and able refutation of Blanshards
hook, American Freedom and Catholic Potter. In
a clear and logical mannei Mi O'Neill exposed in
his address the evil of Blanshard s volume of diatribe
against the (atholic Church Ihe speaker look
quite a selection ol propositions from Blanaharris
book and showed him utterly untrue thev arc lie
exposed the bigoted mind of the author of
can Fredoin and Catholic I’oirri proviuv b\ docu
mentary reference the falsity of his attack on the
Church Further Mr O'Neill showed the lack of
scholarship on the part of Mr Blanshard who could
easily have learned the truth from documents and
evidence available in any reputable library.
But the sad part of the whole story, as Mr.
O’Neill pointed out. is that so called scholars have
praised Mr Blanshard* book Still more alarminc
is thr fact that his hook has found its way into many
libraries and is already referred to as a classic an
thority on the mailer of alholicism in Xmerica.
Has American scholarship sunk so low as this?
Do college professors never think clearly and log
rally'’ Have thev no integrity of learning' Are
hey completely unaware of the facts of history
n America’’ Do they advocate complete and im
artial research in all fields except when it comes to
he (atholic hurch? Has not a single one ot them
aken the trouble tn verify the evidence advanced
by Blanshard even if in only one two of his
nears of the Catholic Church'1 If only one of
Blanshard's false statements is disproved, does that
not render his whole book suspect until verified’
scholarship, where hast thou tied from the \ini
can college campus’’ Integrity of thought, denied
n all communist lands, where wilt thou be found
not in American circles of learning’
What to do? Catholic laymen should provide
bundant copies of Di O Neill's book tor all lihrai
s reading rooms schools and to influential people
'w have not the opportunity ot leadin'-1 Ihe .inswer
•0 Mr Blanshard tug task this surely, but an
ostolic one Mr O'Neill has provided the leadei
hip and an adequate tool for this work Every Ca
holic organization might well undertake this pro
ect as most worthy of the lay apostolale.
Catholic Youth cck
The devise of setting aside a particular week
in honor of some group or institution har become so
widespread in its
that it effectiveness has
largely been lost A titled ‘week’ must have much
more than average merit to he able tn stand out
among such wondrously labeled spans as “National
Apple Meek” National Tie Week.” 'Be Kind to
Animals Week,” etc
The discriminating (dcbialoi most look tarlhcrl
than the label when seeking a certain seven day*,
in which to revel There arc some important “weeks”
which deserve more (han passing attention.
Such a “week is National atholic S outh Week
One need not look far to find ample reasons lor
taking an interest in our youth
The burden of much of the news tn the daily
press would give the impression that young people
of the present dax are an irresponsible scatter
brain segment of society about which there is little
or no hope Sad to say, this gloomy conclusion does
have some basts.
The Director of the Federal Bureau of Inxcstiga
tion, Mr .1 Edgar Hoover recently published some
startling facts gathered by his office Almost 3(1
percent of all person* arrested
years of age and they were responsible for 55 pci
cent of all robberies 60 per cent ot all burglarie*
69 per cent of all auto thefts and 43 per cent of all
than 25
The FBI chief quick tn point tn the cause
of these disheartening statistics, saying, “behind
these figures lie tragic stories of parental neglect,
broken homes, immorality, adult delinquency, and
nublic apathy—painful proof that our nation is suf
fering from spiritual starvation.”
The people of the nation who decry the state
of our youth can only do so at the price of being
hypocritical. If the youth of the nation is in a had
way, it is the adults who have only themselves
to blame. To neglect the youth of today is to under
mine our country's future.
It is only those who have no religious faith
though that look upon the youths of our country
and their problems and see no hope. It is a case of
seeing only the bad and none of the good, and of
not putting the hlame where it belongs.
In his letter declaring the week beginning Oct.
19 as Catholic Youth Week in the Diocese. Bishop
Ready said, “the position of youth in our society
may he considered precarious and uncertain to
those who have no religious faith. However, the
challenge to meet evil with good, to establish firm
foundations of hope, to build ties of brotherly love,
to accept their share in the responsibilities of the
future is unprecedented in our history.”
These are w’ords of hope. And they give the
reason why each person, youth and adult, should
enter into the spirit of Catholic Youth Week.
usl Among Ourselves
Passing Comment Considered or Inconsiderate
One t, our prominent Catholic magazines takes
occasion from some circumstance or other of this
autumn time, to exclaim that Christmas is almost
here, and suggests that we do not overlook the
matter of foam rubber cushions when we are mak
ing up gift lists. This is what people who love a
phiase will call a timely thought, while others will
regard it as a peculiarly poisonous recommendation.
Despite ihe advertisers, and these tiresome peo
ple with the long view ever foreshortened before
them, there are still a good many days between
us ano Christmas and more days, one hopes pious
ly, between us and foam rubber cushions. We have
a good deal of important business to transact before
it becomes absolutely imperative to decide what
shall be sent to Aunt Belinda and what will do
for Uncle Rupert. We have football to attend to,
and a President to elect, and one thing and anoher
besides earning Ihe year’s taxes.
4 9*
We still have a fortnight nf golden October
weather ahead, with its golden opportunity of get
ting better acquainted with the better-eaid Rosary.
And we have the whole long month of the Holy Souls.
All this before Advent brings on the proximate
preparation for Christmas.
The month of the Rosary should have taught us
to pray better, and thus prepared us for November,
before the Feast of All Souls sees us fairly launched
on the most stimulating and rewarding work of char
ity in the book,—the helping of the souls in purga
lory. It is good for us all to review’ the points of
sacred docrine touching upon this great work.
Our Faith teaches us two things on this point:
first, that purgatory exists second, that the souls
in purgatory are helped by our prayers and suf
frages on their behalf. That the souls in purgatory
help us is a matter of general experience, although
this tact is not defined as an article of the faith.
Purgatory exists. It is a state and a place in
which human souls undergo cleansing punishment
for the venial sins, or the remains of forgiven sins,
which burdened them at the moment of then death
and judgment. The souls in purgatory are helped
by prayers and good works offered here on earth
for their benefit.
The souls in purgatory can no longer help them
selves. The time ol man's meriting (always through
Ou Ixud and Savior Jesus Christ) is Ihe span of his
responsible life on earth If a person is not cleansed
from even the slightest guilt of sin. and from the
remains of sin, he cannot immediately enter heaven
when he dies, for nothing defiled can enter heaven.
He must first purge away the defilement, not by
meriting, for the time for that is gone, but by
suffering, unless we on earth come to his aid.
Purgatory is a most merciful dispensation With
out it, what could those souls do which arc stained,
not mortally, with sin al the moment of death'.’ They
simply would not enter heaven, even if entrance
were offered them, until they are fully ready, fully
cleansed from all defilement. Purgatory is not so
much an evidence of stern justice as it is a manifes
tation of (rod's infinite love and kindness. It is kind
ncss to the departed souls, and it is a marvelous
kindness to the faithful on earth, since it is at once
a warning and an admonition for their guidance
and also an opportunity to share magnificently in
Ihe redemptive work of Christ.
We may help the souls in purgatory by praying
for them, by offering or hearing Holy Mass for
them or causing Masses to be offered, by hearing
trials and sufferings with patience for their benefit,
hy gaining indulgences for them, by asking God
Io accept on their behalf the merits we may claim,
through Our Lord, for our own good works. To be
eager and energetic in helping the Holy Souls is
ever thr mark of a thorough Catholic.
Perhaps the easiest way of lending aid tn the
souls suffering in Purgatory is found in gaining in
dulgences for them The Church, loving mother of
all the faithful living or departed, makes this pos
sible Exorcising her divinely given power of loos
ing and binding, the Church attaches to certain
simple prayers and practices a value of merit,—
drawn from the inexhaustible treasury of the mer
its of Christ and His Saints,—which we may obtain
to satisfy the temporal debt of punishment due to
sms. our own or those of the souls in purgatory.
We may, lot certain prayers or works, gain a
full or plenary indulgence. That is to say, the
Church has attached to these actions, when per
fectly performed with perfect dispositions, a com
plctc cancellation of the temporal punishment bur
dening (m fact or in sentence) the soul for whose
benefit the indulgence is won A partial indulgence
cancels a part of the temporal punishment due A
person may gam an indulgence for himself or for
the departed, but not for any other living person.
A partial indulgence is expressed in terms of
years or days, but we are not sure of the exact
value and extent of these partial cancellations of
temporal punishment Purgatory lies in thr myster
ious realm between earthly time and heavenly
timelcssness K is a temporal stale, but our units
of time are not accurate and adequate measures of
its enduring To gam an indulgence of ten days
may mean that as much temporal punishment is
cancelled as would be wiped out by ten days of
severe penance but this is only an opinion We
do not know just how much temporal punishment
is cancelled by gaming a partial indulgence But
we do know that God is infinitely generous, and that
the value of even Ihe least of partial indulgences
is immensely great.
Wc nerd to learn the practice of gaining mdul
gcnces, for our own sake. What better schooling
could we have than by applying ourselves deligent
ly to the ga'nmg of indulgences for the holy souls
WASHINGTON The “trial”
and “conviction” of 28 priests
and 12 Catholic laymen in Bul
garia a few days ago, recalls that
that country has had a long and
bad record in the matter of rel
igious persecution.
Bulgaria seems to be engaged
in sort of unholy competition
with its neighbors—Rumania to
the north and Yugoslavia to the
west—in stamping out religion
and making a mockery of basic
human rights.
A similar phoney “trial” of 15
Protestant church leaders in
early 1949 focused world atten
tion upon what was already a
bad situation Bulgaria. The
.judicial farce drew indignant
protests from many nations and
made it clear that the end of all
religious freedom in Bulgaria
was in sight. And. it became
clear, just travesties on judicial
proceedings were being used to
discredit and besmirch clergy
men who incurred communist
wrath, so the law was to he the
weapon with which religion was
to he hcaten to death.
A national law was introduced
w hich, as a sort of window-dress
ing. established freedom of con
science and of religious belief
the first article, and then
went on for 30-odd articles to
make practically every phase of
religious Ijfr subject to control
I .ast week
we promised to
discuss some of
the informal
o ams ol
social educat
ion developed
in the United
States in re
cent years in
response to the
i e tives of
the Holy See.
The following list, we hasten to
remind the reader, is only a ran
dom sampling and does not pre
tend to he complete
The Young Christian Worker*
One of Ihe most important
types of social education is that
being conducted—still on a re
latively limited scale in the Unit
ed States—by the Youth Christian
Workers, the American equi
valent of the Jocists. The YCW's
emphasis is on education through
concrete “action in life” through
an organized effort on the part
of the young workers them
selves to solve those social pro
blems which are within their
reach and which for that very
reason are their own special re
sponsibility. Not that the YCW
underestimates the necessity of
formal education for all men
and women, including its own
members. Not at all. But the
YCW does emphasize more than
our schools do, and more than
the nonspecialized types of
Catholic Action do, the import
ance of action as a means of ef
fective education in the social
virtues. Those who are interested
in learning more about the ap
proach of the YCW and of re
lated types of specialized Catho
lic Action are referred to the
Catholic Action Federation. 638
Deming Place. Chicago, III.
Catholic Labor School*
Catholic labor education in the
In The Service Of The King
A Sustained Bad Record
and approval by the state. The
very existance of a religious
denomination, so far as juridical
status was concerned was made
to depend upon the will of a
single cabinet officer—the for
eign minister.
Speaking of the “trial” of the
Protestant clergymen three years
ago, Archbishop John T. McNich
olas, O P., of Cincinnati said “the
sympathy of all normal men goes
out to ail Christians and relig
ious persons behind the Iron
Curtain who are persecuted, de*
graded and even liquidated un
less they become slaves and tools
of the perverted clique control
ling the communistic govern
ment of Bulgaria
The Archbishop, then Chair
man of the Administrative Board
of the National Catholic Welfare
Conference, added that “like
wise, the leaders of the Ortho
dox Church, as well as Catholic,
Protestant and Jewish leaders
who do not admit to the en
slavement of Moscow must ex
pect infamous defamation, per
secution, exile, slavery, hard
labor, starvation and death.”
He called the “trial” of the Pro
testant “iniquitous, shameful and
By summer of 1949, w-ord fil
tered out of Bulgaria that the
Red regime had loosed an anti
religious campaign that ridicul­
Catholic Social Education
United States is beginning to
catch on at long last, but al
together too slowly in view of the
critical needs of the day. At pre
sent we have approximately 75
Catholic labor schools (evening
schools for workers) in the
various dioceses of the country.
A thousand or more are needed
to provide a reasonable minimum
of Catholic social education for
union members, who will be call
ed upon increasingly to play a
more important role in the re
construction of society.
These labor schools are
“schools” only in the most gen
eral sense of the term. Emphasis
is on informality and free dis
cussion, and the curriculum is
geared as much as possible to the
current needs and problems of
the “students.” Additional in
formation about this important
development in the life of the
Church in America can be found
in Father John Cronin's book,
“Catholic Social Action,” to
gether with practical recommen
dations as to how the movement
can be extended as it must he
to care for the social education
of employers and professional
people. Interested readers may
also wish to contact the Social
Action Department of NCWC for
assistance in establishing pro
jects of this description.
Catholic Rural Education
For Adult*
The National Catholic Rural
Life Conference under the
leadership of Monsignor Luigi
Ligutti. Father William Gibbons.
S. J., and the diocesan directors
of rural life—sponsors a number
of local and regional institutes
for Catholic farmers. These are
supplemented or, better still, in
spired by rural retreats with
emphasis on the application of
religious principles to the social,
economic, and cultural problems
ed all religious, Orthodox, Pro
testant, Jewish and Catholic, and
that concentration camps already
were filled with Catholic priests
and laymen accused of acts of
sabotage, black marketing and
sedition. Of Bulgaria's seven
million people it is estimated
that less than 60.000 were Cat
holics in 1949. The greater
number of inhabitants belonged
to the schismatic Orthodox
Great Britian wrote a note to
the Bulgarian government say
ing “religious freedom in East
ern Europe is under a deliber
ate. general attack” London
told Sofia that it thought Bul
garia had no intention of living
up to her peace treaty guarante
es of political and religious free
dom. Observers in London
thought at the time that the gov
ernment might “take stronger
steps” later.
Last year, there was clear
evidence that the Red regime
in Bulgaria was keeping a con
stant pressure on all clergymen
—Catholic and non-Catholic—to
bring them to renounce their
religious calling. This pressure
was exerted by offers of
“honors” for compliance and
threats of punishment for re
fusal. The “trials” just reported
would indicate that they are still
getting refusals for their efforts.
of the farm family. The rural
retreat movement, like the work
ers' retreat movement, is still
in its infancy, but there is every
reason to expect that it will ex
pand rather rapidly. Those who
desired further information a
bout this movement may con
tact the NCRLC, 3801 Grand
Avenue, Des Moines 12. Iowa.
Genaral Adult Education
Adult education takes a wide
variety of forms in the United
States—parish study clubs, lec
ture programs, forums, etc.—but
one relatively new form calls
for special mention. We refer
to the efforts being made by
some of our Catholic colleges and
universities to extend their
services to the general public in
their respective communities.
This development is long over
due. For too many years our col
leges and universities, sometimes
for reasons beyond their control,
have been in their respective
cities but not of them. They
have been “ivory towers” after
a fashion, too little concerned
with the problem of the com
munity, too far removed from
the general public. Today, more
of them are moving into the field
of adult education (of a non
academic and informal varity)
on a wide range of religious
social, and cultural subjects.
These feu types of informal
social education are here describ
ed only superficially. But per
haps the mere mention of the
fact that some Catholic organi
zations and institutions have
already broken the ice and are
having a reasonable measure of
success, will encourage others
to imitate their example and
thereby bring us closer to the
goal envisioned by Pius XI: an
intensive program of social ed
ucation for “all classes of so
Does Church Approve
Of Psychiatry?
Q. How can you distinctly tell
if a sin is venial or mortal?
Give examples.
A. The Catechism defines a
mortal sin as a “grievous of
fense against the law of God”
and a venial sin as a “less ser
ious offense.” For a sin to be
mortal it must involve a thought,
desire, word, action or omission
which is seriously wrong e.g. de
liberate cursing, missing mass on
Sunday, a lie that causes ser
ious harm, etc. In the second
place the person must know what
he ir doing (i.e. not asleep) and
know that it is wrong (e.g. a
child of three could not sin mor
tally even by killing someone).
The third point requires that the
person fully consent to the act.
A person who is forced to omit a
serious obligation (e.g. if parents
refuse to permit a child to at
tend mass) or commits a serious
act, sinful in itself, without full
consent (e.g. an alcoholic) does
not ordinarily sin mortally. In all
such cases the proper place to
settle the question where there
is any doubt is the confessional.
The priest is trained and or
dained to help, and the Sacra
ment of Penance is divinely or
dained for this problem.
Q. How can one find a Catho
lic psychiatrist in or near Co
lumbus? Does the Church ap
prove of psychiatry?
A The first one to consult in
such situations is your pastor, if
there is something involved
which cannot be settled in con
fession. He will be glad to refer
you to a worthy practitioner or
to someone who can recommend
nne. Any art or science which is
for man's welfare in its purpose
and in its practice will be accept
ed by the Church. It is not the
Church’s business, however, to
approve or disapprove of such
sciences as such. When doctrinal
or moral questions are involved
the Church will speak out oth
erwise the value of the use of
such science is left to the pru
dence of the individual Catholic,
under advice from his confessor
or' pastor!
Q. If one breaks the fast un
intentionally, has one committed
a sin?
A. No. The law of fasting is a
grave obligation but if a person
forgets or through honest mis
understanding violates the law
there is no sin. If the violation is
a result of carelessness or con
tempt of the law. however, it
would be a sin. depending on the
degree of malice.
Q. If one should make a mistake
and order meat on Friday at a
restaurant or make a mistake
and prepare it at home, should
he throw it away, if it cannot be
saved or should he eat it?
A. Since the law of abstinence
is a grave obligation on the con­
Interest i n
Mission ToMoscow
and prophetic
words are be
ing cabled
from Moscow.
At meetings of
the Commun
ist Internation
al, party big
wigs from
through out
the world are
being permit
ted to make a
sions unanimous as a gesture to
Politburo deci­
Correspondents on the spot
interpret the official statements
as indicating that the Cold War
will not be allowed to get hot
for the next decade. Instead,
they suggest, it may reach a
sub-Arctic temperature.
Given The Work*
We all know that as soon as
Stalin says, “I don’t want a war
this year,” some American
statesman with a short memory
for history (and an almost en-1
dearing ignorance of philoso
phy) will say, “See? We can do
business with Stalin.” And our
folklore will again be brighten
ed by the mythical figure of
Good Old Uncle Joe, the kindly
eccentric of the Kremlin. Pret
ty soon somebody with the best
of credentials will go to Moscow
to see whether the differences
between the Christian and the
Communist worlds cannot be
ironed out by a frank, man-to
man discussion.
At that moment, the Catholics
of the Free World will protest.
And at once we shall he accused
of harboring uncharitable sus
picions of a fellow man when we
suggest that tlncle Jot has been
known to lie. We shall be re
proached for taking a narrow,
selfish attitude towards Commun
ists simply because Marx was an
atheist. It will he suggested that
we have a particular ax to grind,
that the quarrel between the
Vatican and the Kremlin need
not concern non-Catholic Amer
icans. We will, in a word, be giv
en the works.
And at that time, I am glad
to say, we shall have ready-to
hand a simple and crushing bit of
repartee. It is provided in the
recently published book, “From
Major Jordan's Diaries,” com
piled by George Racey Jordan
and Richard L. Stokes. For this
book gives the first complete
account of how just such a good
will mission to Moscow began
and ended. Moreover, the visitor
science of every Catholic there
must be a serious reason for an
exception. The habit of some Ca
tholics whereby they lightly ex
cuse themselves is in no way
justified. Based on the need of
penance (Matthew 16:34 Luke
13:5) and remembrance of the
Passion of Christ our obligation
in this regard is more serious
than the “wasting of a small
amount of food. It is commonly
accepted that Americans waste a
great amount of food, and that
certainly is not pleasing to God.
The small amount that might be
thrown away by observing the
law’ of abstinence certainly would
be negligible. If it is a grave in
convenience (e.g. a workingman’s
lunch where he has no chance to
get something else) an exception
is justified. The pastor has pow
er to dispense in case some mis
take occurs and a really grave
inconvenience results for a fam
Q. How can some Catholics get
away with marrying divorced
men and women? I try to explain
to my non-Catholic friends but
many times the individual has
been baptized, etc. and my an
swers are not sufficient.
A, Generally speaking people
who bring up these cases do not
know all the facts. The Catholic
Church has always been a stal
wart and sacrificing defender of
the purity of marriage (e.g. Hen
ry VIII and Napoleon). Nobody
“gets away” with anything in
this regard. If the evidence pre
sented to the marriage court
shows that a first marriage was
invalid (which could be because
of an impediment to that mar
riage, or a defect of matrimonial
consent, or a defect of form) the
court simplv announces that it
is invalid. The famous case of
the movie actor a year or so ago
is a case in point. There was a
great deal of cone rn expressed
because this Catholic man was
married bv a priest in Rome aft
er being divorced. It should have
been evident to any Catholic that
his first marriage, which was
“outside the Church.” making it
invalid as it is for any Catholic,
was not a permanent barrier to
the divorce be obtained but of
his marriage by the pries*, ft
was not a matter of recognizing
proving that the marriage was
invalid from the start. The Paul
ine Privilege, granted bv the
Holy Father in rare instances,
involves dissolution of a non
sacramental marriage. Only of
ficials in the marriage court
have the facts in such cases and
most rumors about them are full
of misinformation.
Send questions to the Rev. Ed
ward F. Healy, Inquiry Corner.
The Catholic Times, Box 636
Columbus (16) Ohio.
to Stalin was an American Ca
tholic. More? moreover, he was
a priest.
Punling Question*
Father Stanislaus Orlemanski,
pastor of a church in spring
field, Mass., early in 1944 decid
ed to visit Josef Stalin. He want
ed to discuss the Red persecu
tion of the Church, especially in
the Poland of his forefathers.
He had what this book calls “ad
vanced ideas” on social ques
tions—with which thp Russian
dictator seems to have been fa
miliar, although this priest’s
writings are not known to most
literate Americans. So, Father
Orlemanski, in Springfield, wrote
to Stalin, in Moscow, suggesting
that they talk it over.
The priest went to Moscow.
But he went against the express
orders of his Ordinary, Bishop
Thomas M. O’Leary. He flew
across Canada, Alaska and Si
beria. On April 25, 1944, he
spent two and one-half hours in
discussion with Stalin, Molotov
and an interpreter inside the
Kremlin. He was then sent, as
Stalin’s favored guest, to visit
the camp where 8,000 Polish sol
diers, impressed into the Red
Army, were in training. Here
he declared that Stalin, to his
personal knowledge, was “a true
friend of Poland and the Catho
lic religion.” He led the soldiers
in cheers for the Soviet Union.
Historic? Wonderful? The
achievement of a lifetime? Later
arrests and murders of our
priests by Stalin’s followers
have shown the whole world the
measure of Stalin’s 1944 duplic
ity. But the Church did not need
to wait eight years to know the
footling futility of such mis
sions as Father Orlemanski’s—
as Wendell Willkie’s, as Ambas
sador Patrick Hurley’s, as Har
ry Hopkins’ or Henry Wallace's.
The Church knew the answer
in 1944. For on the day when
Father Orlemanski’s presence in
Moscow was learned, the Rt.
Rev. Msgr. (now Bishop) Mich
ael J. Ready, General Secretary
of the National Catholic Welfare
Conference, described this mis
sion as a “political burlesque,
staged and directed by capable
Soviet agents.” And on the
priest's return to Springfield, he
was ordered into seclusion for
disobedience and “treating with
Yes, the Church knows how to
evaluate missions to Moscow.
She did it rightly in 1944. She
will be right—again-—in 1954.

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