All city and district executive committees have received the following document and have been ordered to assemble the required information and secretly forward it to theirRayon executive committee:
.......... Rayon Peoples' Council for Deputies
By January 2, 1979, please submit (personally) to the Rayon Executive Committee information on the status of religious associations of all denominations, the state of religiousness in the district, area, city, clerical activity and the work of the district, town or city executive committee in enforcing laws on religious cults throughout 1978.
The information must include answers to all the questions enumerated in the memorandum. Moreover, the enclosed forms No. 1 and No. 2 must be filled out accurately.
Questions which must be covered in the information submitted:
I. Status of religious communities of all denominations and the state of religiousness.
1. How many houses of worship per individual denomination.
2. Number of clergy in religious associations.
3. Current condition of houses of worship, their maintenance and repair.
4. When inventory was taken of state property in houses of worship. Condition of state property.
5. Outline the activity of religious community executive bodies (positive and negative examples).
6. State of religiousness as well as receipts and expenses as listed in enclosed forms No. 1 and 2.
II. Outline and Clerical Activity
1. Who manages the physical plant and finances of the religious community, collects donations.
2. How the clergy observe the laws; typical violations of the law.
3. Do priests interfere in the affairs of families, groups, schools; if there are such instances, give concrete examples.
4. Who teaches children catechism, how is confirmation organized, the names of ministers of cult who violate the laws in this respect, with concrete examples.
5. How extensively and in what churches children serve at mass and church services (number of altar boys).
6. Methods used by the clergy to revive religious life (work with the youth, parents, women, the intelligentsia), main directions and trends of their work with the same categories of inhabitants, how this affects believers and other inhabitants of the district, town and city.
7. How many sermons were preached and heard during the year. General content and nature of sermons:
— were there instances when the reality of Soviet life was distorted in sermons, when sermons were used for political and other ends.
— include a summary of the Christmas sermon (on a separate sheet).
8. Give an account of the more important religious feasts— details of recollections, which were held in the district, town, city; number of participants, steps taken by the clergy to attract more people, active participation of believers in this feast over the past years—give comparisons.
9. Were there instances when priests organized processions of believers on religious feasts, in violation of art. 50 of the Statutes on Religious Associations
10. Living conditions of priests: Do they have communal apart-apartments, live in parish houses, rent private apartments (apartments with conveniences or without them), is there a telephone, do they have private cars, motorcycles for their personal use."
At the end of 1978, all pastors in Lithuania were required to fill out questionnaires sent out by the diocesan chanceries and executive committees. Questionnaire No. 1 included the following questions: Does the religious association have "holy places?" How many school-age children were baptized? How many adults? How many received First Communion? How many were confirmed?
How many Easter confessions? How many unregistered ministers of cult?
In Questionnaire No. 2, answers to the question of how much was spent on "repairs to the house of worship," must include all types of expenditures: real estate taxes, church taxes, insurance payments, expenses for electricity (25 kopeks per Kw), for fuel and other community services. It seems that the atheist government is planning to use these artificially inflated figures for propaganda purpose: See how churches in Soviet Lithuania are being repaired! And as for taxes—there are none!
Some Lithuanian priests have begun to refuse to answer these questionnaires. In such cases, Deans or Chancery officials "outdo" themselves and fill these questionnaires from their own heads, merely to curry the favor of the Religious Affairs Commissioner.
It is high time for the chanceries to stop performing this shameful work and for more priests to stop returning godless questionnaires and also stop providing the Republic's atheist council and the KGB with information they need.
To: The Chancery of the Kaunas Archdiocese
This year, as every year, we received a questionnaire (No. 2) from the Chancery. It appears that the questionnaires received from the Rayon executive committees are identical in wording. They are therefore drafted by the atheists and are sent out through the Religious Affairs Commissioner via two different routes. A question arises: Why waste time and paper which is in such short supply for everyday needs.
Each year, these questionnaires contain new questions. This year the brazenness of the atheists is truly boundless—they have even begun to intrude into matters of conscience, demanding data on how many believers made their Easter confession. Moreover, the questionnaire is an insult to priests by calling them ministers of cult. I am a priest and not a minister of cult. I am therefore not obliged to listen to insults, be discriminated against and at the same time submit information on the spiritual state of the Churcfi. to the atheists. Such information serves atheist propaganda and the destruction of the Church.
Last year, the atheists of Raseiniai wanted to prosecute me for examining children for First Communion. This year (June 29th) I did not escape the "concerned" surveillance of Raseiniai District Security Committee Chief V. Gardauskas when I pose with children at the main doors of the church on the occasion of their First Communion. Is it really necessary after such and like incidents to report to the atheists how many children receive first Communion.
During my first years of pastoral work in Viduklė, high Rayon officials continually slandered me by word of mouth and in the press, forbade me to preach at Šiluva, prohibit priests from inviting me to recollections. Some officials have become obsessed with the pastor of Viduklė.
The atheists are also attacking believing children and their parents. Teachers Vaicekauskas, Mockus and others terrorize children to prevent them from serving at Holy Mass and participating in processions. Viduklė District Chairman A. Zigmantas threatened Česlovas Marcinkevičius (whose wife recently died leaving two minor children): "If you don't stop singing in the church choir, the professional union committee will not allot you any assistance." The Director of the Viduklė State Farm, E. Zaikauskas, is planning to dismiss a fireman simply because his son serves at Holy Mass.
Moreover, the 50-ruble fine leveled against me this year for leading a procession of believers to the cemetery on the eve of All Souls Day clearly shows the atheists' true aims, as well as their tactics.
I will therefore, refuse this year and in the future to fill out questionnaires sent by the chancery or the executive committee. The church committee will submit information on the financial activity of the church to the Rayons. Every Sunday atheists send their observers to our church, let them gather the information they need.
All in all, it is amazing that the Chancery does not protest such questionnaires and sends them out to priests. In the final analysis, limits which no one is allowed to cross must be set.
Viduklė, December 26, 1978 Feast of St. Stephen
Rev. Alfonsas Svarinskas, Pastor of Viduklė.