Thursday, April 02, 2009

In Memory of John Paul II on the Anniversary of His Death

"Then there was Lithuania, another intensely Catholic part of the Soviet empire where the Church had been brutalized since the country's forced incorporation into the Soviet Union in 1940. Clandestine ordinations, an active underground network of clergy and nuns, and the longest-running samizdat publication in the USSR, the Chronicle of the Catholic Church in Lithuania (first published in 1972), had kept the Church alive under religious repression and cultural Russification. Now came a Lithuanian-speaking Pope, a cultural heir of the old Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, who shortly after his election dispatched his red cardinal's zucchetto clandestinely to the Marian shrine at Ostrabrama [Ausros Vartu] in Vilnius."

-Witness to Hope, The Biography of Pope John Paul II, 1920-2005, by George Weigel
Our Lady of Vilnius, pray for us!

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