Viktoras Petkus, a member of the Lithuanian Helsinki Group, has been transferred from the Vladimir Prison to the Chistopol prison. In preparation for the 1980 Olympics, Vladimir Prison has been abolished and transferred to remote Chistopol.
The current address of Viktoras Petkus:
422950 Tatarskaya ASSR Chistopol, Ue 148 st. 4.
On January 20, 1979 Ona Pranskūnaitė completed serving the sentence imposed on her for making copies and circulating the Chronicle of the Catholic Church in Lithuania and was released. The evening of that same day she returned by airplane to Kaunas. The people of Kaunas greeted (Miss) Pranskūnaitė at the airport with flowers; festive welcome-home gatherings were held in several places. Ona Pranskunaitė returned tired but in a very good mood.
The martyr P.(etras) Paulaitis writes:
I keep going forward. I've already completed 32 years, and only some three more are left. I calmly look to the future which will be kind, if not to me, to my Fatherland, to my countrymen certainly. But always and everywhere: "Thy will be done!"
I need only thank all my fellow countrymen and even more ardently express my love for you and offer myself up for the common and just cause of the freedom of all. Each heartfelt word from my kind brothers and sisters reaching me behind the barbed wires is a balm: It causes all wants to fade, it eases the pain caused by all the thorns which are so abundant here and, it seems that the yoke of occupation which one must drag year after year throughout life becomes less brutal when one is accompanied by loving hearts. But how can I thank those loving hearts who remember me, who write to me at least occasionally? For I can do no more than a bird with clipped wings . . .
My health: It would seem that no one lacks for indispositions. I cannot keep from wishing for health, especially during the winter. There are all kinds of flu, arthritises, rheumatisms and similar disorders. But so far they are inconsequential things which should not be paid much attention: They come, they go and everything remains the same. And there are many more important things to think and worry about. I cannot refrain from rejoicing in the words of Maironis:
"Now, I no longer ask for death, but for life,
I want to live, to fight!
The Almighty granted me breath, I know,
Not to bathe my face with tears . . ."
For everything'; Deo gratias! And in everything: Thy will be done!"
Petras Paulaitis is one of the noblest Lithuanians. At the Sakharov Hearings in Copenhagen the Russians asserted that Paulaitis is an example of moral integrity.
The Chronicle asks our emigrant brethren to continually bring up the name of Petras Paulaitis, our Nation's long-time martyr. Let us demand his quick release into freedom!
The address of Petras Paulaitis:
Mordovskaya ASSR stancija Potma, p/o Lesnoj 385/19-3
On October 20, 1978 Elena Lapienienė visited her husband Vladas Lapienis who is still imprisoned at the 19th Mordovian labor camp (together with Petras Paulaitis). (Mrs) Lapienien was thoroughly searched before and after the visit. Security agent Masha stripped her naked, undid her braids, had her turn around, bend over, even examined the soles of her feet, lest one "anti-Soviet scrap of paper" be taped there. It is difficult to imagine the state so fearing the word of truth written on a scrap of paper. (Mrs) Lapienienė was not allowed to give her husband a package, though the prisoner is entitled to receive a package since he has served half of his allotted sentence.
Vladas Lapienis writes from labor camp:
"In the time it takes me to return from the mess hall to my living quarters after lunch, I sometimes consume an entire slice of bread . . ."
Forced labor, hunger, continual degradation and punishment: these are everyday facts of life in Soviet labor camps.
During the trial of Vladas Lapienis, the KGB wanted to use his wife Elena as a witness against her husband, but she testified bluntly that security agents had behaved brutally during the search and had confiscated much religious literature. Despite this, the court used (Mrs) Lapienienė's statement that no one prevents her from going to church as proof that freedom of belief does exist in Lithuania.
It is true that no one keeps Elena Lapienienė, a simple cook, from attending church, but she has waited for over ten years for a more decent communal apartment and has not been given one, though she had been at the head of the list for years and the annual commission confirms that her apartment is completely uninhabitable.
When (Mrs) Lapienienė retired, her place of employment did not forget either that she is a believer. She was not given the least little gift (others receive them!) though she performed her work very diligently.
Once, (Mrs) Lapienienė asked the professional union chairwoman, F. Sterskaya, for a voucher to purchase a rug, but the chairwoman was aware that the cook is a believer and retorted: "You will never get one!"