Than the Orthodox Church helped the red Army in the Great Patriotic

History 26/02/20 Than the Orthodox Church helped the red Army in the Great Patriotic

the First years of Soviet rule were marked by the fierce struggle of the state with the Orthodox Church. But less than a quarter of a century as during the great Patriotic war of spiritual and secular power was again forced to unite against a common enemy.


Before the revolution in Russia was 78 thousand Orthodox churches and 25 thousand mosques, the beginning of the war their number was reduced more than 20 times. Only by 1938 the country had eliminated about 40 of the thousands of temples of different religious denominations. Come down to the fact that according to Patriarchy in 25 regions of the country was not a single temple, and in 20 districts, their number does not exceed five. However, the majority of the population of the Soviet Union in those years, were born before the revolution, and was converted to a particular religion spread throughout the Russian Empire. According to the opinion polls in 1937 from the illiterate inhabitants of the Soviet Union, believers were 84%, and the literate population – 44%. It is not surprising that with the onset of heavy wartime leadership of the country and its ordinary citizens hurried back to the faith of their ancestors. Thus miraculously preserved during the red terror of the clergy, was able to forgive the recent grievances and acted on the side of Soviet power during the struggle of the inhabitants of the country against the Nazi invaders. In the darkest days of the defense of Moscow around the city were made air procession on the plane with the icon of the Tikhvin mother of God.

All to front

Symbolically, without waiting for requests from the authorities, the Patriarchal Locum Tenens Metropolitan Sergius, on 22 June 1941, made a sermon to the faithful with arms to defend the Homeland and to raise funds to help the front. His appeal was heard. Began a large-scale transfer of funds. The money on defense handed ne only the laity but also the priests themselves. In the period from 1941 to 1944, the Orthodox Church has donated to the defense of the country more than 200 million rubles. In particular, these funds have been created by a squadron of St. Alexander Nevsky and the tank column named after Dmitry Donskoy. As the billboards on the financial donations of the clergy about all of them reported the newspaper “Pravda” and “Izvestia”. Power, in turn, recognizing the help of the Orthodox Church, as a thank you was released from prison a large number of priests. In 1943 was officially established by order of Alexander Nevsky, Alexander Suvorov and Mikhail Kutuzov. The troops returned to St. George’s ribbon and the form of the king’s pattern, this moment is not forbidden presence in front of the priests. In 1942, during Easter in Moscow not only allowed, but and Vespers celebrations. In September 1943, Stalin met personally with the leadership of the Orthodox Church to a personal example to show the unity of the Church and the state in the fight against the common enemy.

the Result of the meeting was the resolution open in Moscow, Leningrad and Kiev theological academies, which even before the war it was impossible to imagine. Appeared in the country of the Holy Synod under the Patriarch and the Council for Russian Orthodox Church. There is a strong tradition that Zhukov before every major offensive was carried on the fronts of the Kazan icon of the Mother of God. As a rule, in this case, the success was on the side of the Soviet troops. The revival of the Church to the end of the war was so widespread that Stalin was planning to do in Moscow – the Orthodox Vatican city, combining all streams of the Orthodox Church. However, the Bishop of the Church of Greece and Turkey did not accept this proposal and it remained unfulfilled. When the idea of unification of the Orthodox churches under the hand of Moscow failed, and the mobilization of believers after the war were no longer needed, the relationship between the Church and the government again lost interest, returning to pre-war level.

Dmitry Sokolov

© Russian Seven

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