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Politburo And The Church, Kremlin Archives
N. Petrovsky, S.G. Petrov
Cipher telegram from the secretary of the CC of the Communist Party of Belarus V. A. Bogutsky to the Central Committee of the RCP (b) to J. V. Stalin on the composition of the trial of Catholic Polish priests in Belarus and the planned sentence. May 26, 1922
Received for decryption on 27/1922 at 9 o'clock. 20 minutes.
HIGHLY SECRET PERFORMANCE SUBMIT TO SECRET ARCHIVE
MOSCOW CC RKP TOV. STALIN
26 / Ѵ-22 Y. THE TRIAL OF THE ESERS IS APPOINTED MAY 29. EXTRAORDINARY TRIBUNAL ... 1 * (a few words distorted) ... 1 * CHAIRMAN STAKOVSKY, MEETING TOV. SPAKOINSKY NARKOMZEM TOV. KEPPEN P.O.O. 2 * OKPUSHAGO, ACCUSERS LESHCHINSKY AND PESTKOVSKY. IT WAS RESOLVED TO SEND THE DEATH PENALTY OF KSENZ LISOVSKY, NOT TO PERFORM THE VERDICT. KSEND30V TAMOSHEVSKY, VASILEVSKY PRISONS TERM TO BE DETERMINED AT THE COURT. ARRESTED KSENDZ OF THE GOMEL PROCESS, PRIZED IN THE GOMEL CASE, WHICH COMES TO MINSK WITH FORGIVEN DOCUMENTS WITH THE INTENTION TO GET POLISH. REPORT THE OPINION OF THE CC. nr21 / sh.
SECRETARY OF THE CB KPB BOGUTSKY
- L. 32. Typewritten original on the form of the cipher telegram of the Central Committee of the RCP (b). In the upper right corner there is a stamp of the Bureau of the Secretariat of the Central Committee of the RCP
(b) with a handwritten date "6 / VI-22" and an incoming number. Formulas of secrecy and about transfer to the archive by a stamp.
Notes and Comments:
The file contains a cover letter on the letterhead of the Central Committee of the RCP (b), sent on May 29, 1922 on behalf of I.V. Stalin for conclusion to L.B. Kamenev, signed by the assistant secretary of the Central Committee of the RCP (b) I.P. Tovstukha. On the letter the vultures: “ IN [AM] SECRET. URGENT ". Pencil marks: 1) “ Arch [iv] P [olit] b [yuro]. Belarus "; 2) “Here, apparently, we are not talking about the Socialist-Revolutionaries, but about the priests. If so, I don’t mind. L. Kamenev ". Above is the incoming number of the Bureau of the Secretariat of the Central Committee of the RCP (6). (L. 31).
1 * So in the document.
2 * So in the document, the meaning of the abbreviation is unclear.
Cipher telegram from the secretary of the CC of the Communist Party of Belarus V. A. Bogutsky to the Central Committee of the RCP (b) to JV Stalin about the beginning of the trial of Catholic Polish priests and about the results of negotiations with the Bishop of Minsk and Turov Melchizedek (Paevsky). May 30, 1922
Received for decryption
31 / V 1922 at 9 o'clock 25 minutes
PERFORMANCE SUBMIT TO SECRET ARCHIVE
MOSCOW CC RCP STALIN.
The priests' process began on May 29th. The furnishings are good, MELCHISEDEK  * to our proposal, officially proposed by the PRGPU comrade. Olsky, to go to Moscow for negotiations at the SOGPU expressed a kindly  * desire, asked to be allowed to go around the diocese. We agreed to leave in a week. 30 / Ѵ-22, No. 22
SECRETARY OF THE CB KPB: BOGUTSKY
- L. 33. Typewritten original on the form of the cipher telegram of the Central Committee of the RCP (b). In the upper left corner there is a handwritten note: " Arch [iv] P [olit] b [yuro] ". In the upper right corner there is a stamp of the Bureau of the Secretariat of the Central Committee of the RCP (b) with the handwritten date “2 / VI. 1922 g. " and the incoming number. Formulas of secrecy and about the transfer to the archive in stamps.
Notes and Comments:
Note from the CC of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union to the Politburo of the Central Committee of the RCP (b) to I.V. Stalin and to the GPU to I.S.Unshlikht on the attitude towards various religious groups in Belarus. June 8, 1922
No. 24-28 *
It is secret .
IN THE POLITBURO TS.K. RCP Comrade STALIN.
8 / VI-22
Copy - GPU c. UNSHLICHTU
In connection with the summons to the GPU for negotiations on the possible use of the Bishop of Minsk and Turov - MELCHISEDEK in the fight against TIKHON and the reactionary clergy - the Central Bank of the CPB instructs Comrade. KOREIVO (to the head of the Secret Department of the GPU) - to receive further instructions from you on which line to follow here for us in the future. -
We believe that MELCHIZEDEKA, with a skillful approach, can be used in the fight against the reactionary clergy. You just need to approach him carefully, for MELCHISEDEK is a great diplomat who survived all the occupations and got along with all governments.
At this time, MELCHISEDEK is trying everywhere to emphasize his loyalty to the Soviet regime. On the issue of confiscating valuables, MELCHISEDEK immediately took a firm stand for surrendering valuables, issuing an appeal to the believers on this matter 24 . The rest of the Minsk clergy are more reactionary and conservative than MELCHISEDEK. Minsk priests, where even before the war there was a great struggle with the Catholic Church, more developed and Black Hundred people were selected. At this time, being at the border of the Republic, they still assume the possibility of a conflict and our withdrawal from Belarus, and therefore it is difficult to immediately involve them in the struggle.
A group of (insignificant) Belarusian priests, as well as some Belarusian social activists, raised the issue of autonomy (not autocephaly) of the Belarusian Church. From the negotiations that were conducted with MELCHISEDEK on this issue, it became clear that MELCHISEDEK does not attach much importance to this issue.
For our part, we are stating that this issue does not matter to us here. Popov-Belarusians are relatively few. Especially zealous implementation of the Belarusianization of the church can have a negative phenomenon, namely, rallying around the church of all public intellectual forces and using it for the purpose of nationalist agitation. Since the Moscow administration of the church will be under our influence, perhaps it is possible to agree to autonomy if this is caused by some political expediency and if the autonomous church is dependent on the Moscow Administration.
We believe that it will be easier for us to fight against the Great Russian priests and in general with the Great Russian influence, and it will sooner be possible to keep them on the lead than the Belarusian National Priests. Since MELCHISEDEK will remain in Belarus and since there will be no counter-revolutionary opposition of the church leaders here, we have no need to form another group of Orthodox clergy. The central focus of anti-religious propaganda will have to be shifted to the fight against Polish clericalism and the sectarianism that has developed recently. Orthodoxy in our conditions presents a comparatively less danger in this respect. -
SECRETARY Ts.B. K.P.B. (signature)
- L. 40 — rev. A typewritten copy of that time, made at the GPU and certified by L.N. Volkov. Handwritten date.
Notes and Comments:
The case contains a cover letter on the letterhead of the Secret Department of the GPU, sent on June 15, 1922 by order of IS Unshlikht "for information" "comrade TROTSKY a copy of Comrade STALIN ". The letter was signed for the head of the Secret Department of the GPU by his assistant I. Z. Surto and secretary Medovshchikov. On the letter stamps: 1) "Top] Secret]"; 2) "Secret". In the upper left corner there is a handwritten note: “Arch [iv] P [olit] b [yuro]. Belarus ". In the upper right corner is the stamp of the Bureau of the Secretariat of the Central Committee of the RCP (b) with the date "16 / VI 22" and the incoming number. (L. 39).
24 Appeals of the Bishop of Minsk and Turov Melchizedek regarding the seizure of church valuables, see: GARF, f. 1235, op. 140, d. 60, l. 787-784.