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Re: [Slovak-World] Communism and it's effects on different faiths

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  • William C. Wormuth
    Julia, I read the book Deliverance of Sister Cecilia many years ago and learned a lot that helped me when I first went to Slovakia in 1971.  Ordinary people
    Message 1 of 3 , Sep 26, 2012

      I read the book Deliverance of Sister Cecilia many years ago and learned a lot that helped me when I first went to Slovakia in 1971.  Ordinary people were very helpful  when people were escaping secret police.

      Ordinary people GREATLY feared the police.  I punishment was not given when they were called to the office, the police questioned them concerning how many chickens, ducks etc. they had and sent Romi to terrorize the families, often stealing the animals...

      We had a priest here, Fr. Augustin Zan, who was a secretary to Monsignor Jozef Tiso.  Following the hanging of him the came after Father.  The people in tyhe parish came to tell him police were after him and hid him in the church tower. 

      They made plans to smuggle him out of Czechoslovakia and helped him during the escape, hiding him in different ding him in different towns along the way.  He made it to Germany where he was chaplain to escapees.  

      The communists circulated to other government, (including the German), a picture of him standing in a circle of dead people holding a smoking gun.

      The Germans sent him to Rome and the Vatican followed by sending him to the USA.  It took him years to get over the fear of being followed.

      Another was a man From Kúty , who had been been smuggling people across the Morava River to escape.  He smuggled his wife and son and on the way back was caught.

      They put him on a train which made a stop on Kúty and he asked if they would take off his handcuffs so he could relieve himself.  They did and he ran away.  The guards shouted, Stop or I will shoot  His answer, Go ahead, you can have me dead but never alive.  They did not shoot and he escaped and alter went to Canada.

      He was working in a factory and the Canadian Govt. found that he was being followed and there were several accident, in his factory which they determined were meant to kill him.

      He was allowed by the USA Government to immigrate where he spent the rest of his life working.  When He died, his wife brought his body to Kúty for burial.  The communists had no idea why.  His funeral was crowded with people and they all marched to the cemetery.  As the coffin was lowered a Man shouted, You can have me dead but never alive.

      There were many people  imprisoned especially the educated who refused the communists rules.

      Z Bohom,


      From: Matchett <wmatchett@...>
      To: Slovak-World@yahoogroups.com
      Sent: Wednesday, September 26, 2012 3:03 PM
      Subject: Re: [Slovak-World] Communism and it's effects on different faiths

      Peter M.,

      You should read "The Night of the Barbarians, Memoirs of the Communist Persecution of the Slovak Cardinal" by Jan Chryzostom Cardinal Korec, S.J. or "The Deliverance of Sister Cecilia" by Sister Cecilia as told to William Brinkley. 

      Not only did they not support the church, but priests were told what to preach or sent to labor camps.  The communists tried to end religion in Czechoslovakia on April 13, 1950.

      Julia M.

      On Sep 23, 2012, at 6:49 PM, whiteox_nelson wrote:

      > Somehow threads tend to move away from genealogy on Slovak Roots. Here's my question on Communism and Faith:
      > > I would be interested to know how Communism affected various faiths. My
      > > parents were secretly married in Budapest (Midnight in the cryptorium under
      > > the church), and notification of the marriage was sent to Czechosolvakia to
      > > an RC church where the priest filled in the 'Observation' column that my
      > > father married, where and who to on his baptism record.
      > > When we emigrated to Australia my parents soon abandoned the local RC
      > > church. Evidently 'community' meant something different to what they were
      > > both used to.
      > > The general impression I was given, that Communism did not support any
      > > religion and that people were free not to attend church. The State was more
      > > important than Secular.
      > >
      > > Peter M.

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