The Catholic Thing
Time to Bury Lenin Print E-mail
By George J. Marlin   
Wednesday, 25 July 2012

Eighty-eight years after his death, it appears that Vladimir Lenin’s embalmed body may finally be buried. Russian culture Minister Vladimir Medinsky recently stated, “I have always believed that a body should be entrusted to the earth. . . .Many things in our life would change for the better after this [burial].”

There are, however, many who still believe Lenin is a national hero and oppose the closing of the shrine that displays his body in Moscow and also resist the dismantling of scores of Lenin statues and monuments that stand throughout the Russian nation.

Gennady Zyuganov, the 2012 presidential candidate of the Communist Party, has said: “Any attempt to diminish or rewrite the Soviet era or humiliate Lenin is an attempt to undermine the unity of the Russian Federation.”

I am amazed that there still exists a Lenin cult and so many people honor the memory of this godless monster who created the Gulag prison camp system and was responsible for the deaths of millions of innocent people.

For instance, readers may be surprised to learn that since 1994 an eighteen-foot bronze statue of Lenin (arm extended, gesturing defiantly in the direction of the Mecca of capitalism, Wall Street) has stood atop a luxury high-rise called Red Square on Manhattan’s E. Houston Street. The statue, which was imported from Russia, is considered chic and is listed as a “must see” in many tourist guidebooks. (Imagine the uproar if a statue of Hitler appeared on the roof of an apartment complex called Berchtesgaden!)

Lenin (1870-1924), a ruthless revolutionary who believed Marxist doctrines were scientific and irrefutable, justified any act to achieve a Communist state. Morality was merely “what serves to destroy the old exploiting society and to unite all the working people around the proletariat which is building up a new communist society.”

Lenin had no interest in the common good, family, or friendship. The only thing that mattered was the annihilation of perceived enemies of the state: “We would be deceiving both ourselves and the people if we concealed from the masses the necessity of a desperate, bloody war of extermination, as the immediate task of the coming revolutionary action.”

Lenin despised organized religions. He could not endure their “blasphemous remarks directed at Marx.” Hence, shortly after he assumed power in Russia, he began a campaign to crush Christianity.

Communist youth were ordered to march through streets carrying effigies of God and the Holy Family. Kids dressed as priests, defiled relics and offered to marry couples for a price. They ransacked churches singing “Down with the priests, down with the monks. We will climb to heaven and chase away the gods.”

In 1921, Lenin used the government-induced famine to advance his campaign against the Orthodox Church and to seize its property and valuables. It was his hope that this reign of terror would subdue resistance from the clergy, by inflicting “such brutality that they will not forget it for decades to come.”

            The murderer in Manhattan: Lenin atop the Red Square apartments

Orthodox priests who resisted were tortured and accused of counter-revolutionary conspiracies. Thousands were murdered or sent to prison for life. At show trials, forced confessions were entered as evidence of clerical crimes. “Reformed” priests declared the Russian Revolution was a “Christian creation.”

Clerics who joined the state created Council of the Living Church were forced to declare: “The Church cannot regard Soviet power as the realm of Anti-Christ. On the contrary, the Council draws attention to the fact that the Soviet power is the sole entity in the world that is in a position to realize the Kingdom of God.”

Lenin also persecuted the Catholic Church, whose membership totaled only 1.5 million in the Soviet Union. In 1918, the Bolsheviks decreed that the Church was only a “religious association” entitled to few rights. Property and investments valued at 11 million rubles were confiscated.

Lenin viewed the Catholic Church as a greater threat than the nationalist Orthodox Church because it was as a supranational organization. Catholics were loyal to a universal church headed by a foreign pope who could challenge the mission of the Communist International in any part of the world.

A Bolshevik newspaper announced on March 18, 1923, “A more bitter struggle is being waged against the Catholic Clergy than against the Russian Church, because Catholic organization is more powerful that that of the Orthodox, and Catholic ideology is better adapted to the general conditions of life.”

After the Orthodox show trials were completed, Lenin turned his sights on the Catholics – of both Roman and Eastern rites. Teaching of religion was forbidden, liturgical garb and scared vessels were confiscated, Catholic youth groups were dissolved. Archbishops, bishops, and priests were arrested and charged with having “fostered the counter-revolution by pernicious usages.” Many were executed; others were imprisoned for life in a Christian concentration camp located on the Black Sea.

By 1924, every Catholic episcopal see in Russia was vacant. Pope Pius XI named bishops in secret and sent a French Jesuit, Michel d’Herbigny, undercover to perform episcopal consecrations. Persecution of Catholics continued after Lenin’s death and the total number of clergy, which stood at 963 in 1921, was down to 10 by 1934.

When Soviet thugs were closing a Petrograd Catholic Church in 1922, the faithful refusing to leave dropped to their knees and began singing psalms. After being physically ejected, a defiant parishioner said, “The Soviet government is not everlasting but the Church will abide.”

He was right. Seventy-five years after his death, Lenin’s totalitarian regime was swept into the burial ground of history. And thanks to the sacrifices of tens of thousands of martyrs, the Catholic Church survived and has been growing in the post-Soviet era. The Church in Russia is proof of Christ’s promise that “the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.”

As for Lenin’s body, like his victims, his remains should be dumped into an unmarked grave.

George J. Marlin is an editor of The Quotable Fulton Sheen and the author of The American Catholic VoterHis most recent book is Narcissist Nation: Reflections of a Blue-State Conservative.
The Catholic Thing is a forum for intelligent Catholic commentary. Opinions expressed by writers are solely their own.

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Comments (9)Add Comment
written by Randall, July 25, 2012
I wasn't aware of the Lenin statue in Manhattan. Incredible. But then, consider all the t-shirts with Che Guevera's image.
written by Michael Paterson-Seymour, July 25, 2012
I rather like the inscription in the Cathedral of the Dormition in the Kremlin complex, just yards from Lenin's mausoleum - "The holy, wonder-working images that the heretics took down, our pious rulers have restored"
written by Jon S., July 25, 2012
If Bolshevik morality was merely “what serves to destroy the old exploiting society and to unite all the working people around the proletariat which is building up a new communist society,” then politically correct "morality" is what serves to destroy the hegemony of white, heterosexual males with Judeo-Christian values and to unite all the "marginalized" people (poor people, people of color, women, and LGBT people) around the Democratic Party in building up a new socially just society (which will also be a "green" society).

And this politically correct "morality" is taught as "social justice" in Catholic schools and preached in parish homilies - and our bishops are either unaware or supportive.
written by Sue, July 25, 2012
"Seventy-five years after his death, Lenin’s totalitarian regime was swept into the burial ground of history."

Yes and no. This article correctly identifies the international stage on which Communism plays. By no means has Lenin's legacy left that stage. (btw there is also a Stalin statue in Bedford Virginia). In fact, some would argue that the death of communism (in the fall of the wall and breakup of Soviet Union) was faked so people would let down their guards. As we have done in so many ways, esp. with Obama and his Communist retinue of mentors and handlers. But also in allowing the politburo to pick our other repro-crat candidate Romney. How we react to this dilemma will separate the comrades of Man from the comrades of God.

Yes, we know how the story ends. That nevertheless means we have an integral part in moving it forward against the Antagonist.

..., Low-rated comment [Show]
written by Richard A, July 25, 2012
Sorry, Grump, it's not just as ghoulish. For one thing, Mr. Marlin isn't advocating the burial of Lenin's body because continuing to preserve it more or less intact is "ghoulish". His body should no longer be publicly displayed in some honor because he was a moral monster and a blight upon humanity, as the article makes clear.

And, those saints whose bodies are incorrupt are maintained in that state by the grace of God, not by teams of undertakers trying to mimic the sovereign action of God.
written by Mark, July 25, 2012
Sue: I think you are right. The devil permitted the fall of the Soviet Union so that he could bring socialism to the U.S. and thus foster dependence of the people on the state.
written by Graham Combs, July 25, 2012
I lived in New York in the 80s and 90s and after the fall of the Berlin Wall t-shirt stands popped up on lower Broadway west of the Village that sold t-shirts and sweatshirts bearing the letters CCCP. These were also tres chic for a while. When I worked in publishing one of my fellow junior editors laughed when I said editors were like teenagers -- no attention span and lurching from one trend to another. That characterizes at least one tribe of Manhattan dweller as well. Although they invariably trend left...
written by gaurav, November 27, 2012
LENIN was a GOD of Revolution and GOD for Revolutioneries. He inspired lots of revolutioneries across the globe. He was adored by billions across the world.
And he was much better than the leaders of countries of USA,UK
and other european countries.
Moreover USA,UK and few other nato countries are enemies of humanity. Don,t forget What you(USA,UK) did in vietnam,korea,iraq. And there is an endless list of countries where u guys unofficially operated the operations against humanity.

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