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Russian Orthodox official blasts Stalin

Catholic World News - May 11, 2010

As Russians recalled the 65th anniversary of victory over the Nazis in World War II, the deputy head of the Moscow Patriarchate Department for External Church Relations blasted Communist dictator Joseph Stalin.

“An inhuman system was established under Stalin's regime, and nothing can justify it-- neither industrialization, nor the atomic bomb, nor keeping of the state borders, not even the victory in the Great Patriotic War [World War II], because it was not the personal merit of Stalin, but the achievements of our multinational people,” said Hieromonk Philipp Ryabykh.

“We should understand that the Great Patriotic War had a redemptive meaning,” said Patriarch Kirill, the leader of the Russian Orthodox Church, at a prayer service commemorating the event, adding that the war “disclosed God's truth about ourselves, punished us for the sin, showing us strength and weakness of our people.”

“We had strength to win and now we're bearing a great responsibility not to deviate from this great historical duty-- to be winners.”

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