RUSSIA: Father Ciszek Towards Beatification
The cause of beatification of the Servant of God Father Walter Ciszek (1904-1984) is almost completed. The Jesuit, who wrote books such as “With God in Russia” (or: “He leads me”), spent 23 years of his life in the Soviet Union, five of them in Lubjanka prison in Moscow, and 10 in labor camps in Norilsk and Abakan, Siberia. In prison, in labor camps, but also as a free man, he devoted himself to listening to people, giving spiritual exercises and administering the sacraments. The Jesuits of the Russian Region are working together with the postulator in Rome to collect testimonies about his life during that time. Fr. Michael Desjardins will be the promoter of Fr. Ciszek’s cause in Russia. Among the documents seized recently a very important one is that delivered to Krasnoyarsk by Claretian priest Antoni Badura, who had a file of documents with all personal data of Fr. Ciszek. This file was handed over to him by KGB in 1990 as a souvenir! The photo taken from KGB archives shows prisoner n. 1908 with a pseudonym. As a precaution, Fr. Ciszek’s books have not been published in Russia yet, but now, after almost 50 years, they are ready for publication.
Digital News Service SJ Vol. XV, No. 10 | 5 May 2011