Before I start, this post explains how liberation theology spread widely in parts of the world.
This does not mean that there were never any Communist or Marxist influences in the Church before then. There were several:
SHOCK: Communist Catholic clergy and Vatican II – Agent AA-1025’s story
Communist infiltration of the Church – introduction — Protestant infiltration; social justice; Catholic Agent AA-1025
Insight into Communist infiltration of Catholic Church – Jesuit agents; destroying parishoners’ faith
The curious Vatican omerta on Communist infiltration – Pope Paul VI, Vatican agents, Vatican II
More on Communist infiltration of the Catholic Church – seminaries, parishes with sleeper agents
With that out of the way, let’s look at how the KGB masterminded propaganda to help spread liberation theology throughout Latin and South America.
On May 1, 2015, the CNA — Catholic News Agency — published an interview with Ion Mihai Pacepa, a Romanian dissident who defected to the United States in the 1970s. Pacepa was the highest-ranking defector that decade.
Pacepa spent his career up to then as general for Communist Romania’s secret police.
What follows are excerpts and a summary of what he said about liberation theology — a concept from the KGB which is now, as planned, a basic way of thinking for millions in Central and South America. Emphases mine below.
In the 1950s, Pacepa worked for Soviet General Aleksandr Sakharovsky, communist Romania’s chief razvedka (foreign intelligence) adviser. In 1956, Sakharovsky was promoted. He became the head of:
the Soviet espionage service, the PGU1, a position he held for an unprecedented record of 15 years.
On October 26, 1959, Sakharovsky was working for Nikita Khrushchev. Pacepa says that the two went to Romania which, in Soviet eyes, was a Latin country (linguistic reasons). It was notionally a six-day vacation for Khrushchev, his first of such a long duration, however, as Pacepa explains:
Khrushchev wanted to go down in history as the Soviet leader who had exported communism to Central and South America. Romania was the only Latin country in the Soviet bloc, and Khrushchev wanted to enroll her “Latin leaders” in his new “liberation” war.
It was difficult for the Catholic News Agency journalist to research Sakharovsky. Pacepa replied that he was one of many KGB agents during the height of the Cold War who went undetected by Western and Israeli intelligence. That said:
Sakharovsky played an extremely important role in shaping Cold War history. He authored the export of communism to Cuba (1958-1961); his nefarious handling of the Berlin crisis (1958-1961) generated the Berlin Wall; his Cuban Missile Crisis (1962) brought the world to the brink of nuclear war.
As for liberation theology, Pacepa stated:
The movement was born in the KGB, and it had a KGB-invented name: Liberation Theology.
The KGB enjoyed creating ‘liberation’ movements, including these:
The National Liberation Army of Columbia (FARC), created by the KGB with help from Fidel Castro; the National Liberation Army of Bolivia, created by the KGB with help from “Che” Guevara; and the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), created by the KGB with help from Yasser Arafat are just a few additional “liberation” movements born at the Lubyanka — the headquarters of the KGB.
Liberation theology started the year after Sakharovsky and Khrushchev visited Romania. They worked quickly, didn’t they? This part is very important:
The birth of Liberation Theology was the intent of a 1960 super-secret “Party-State Dezinformatsiya Program” … This program demanded that the KGB take secret control of the World Council of Churches (WCC), based in Geneva, Switzerland, and use it as cover for converting Liberation Theology into a South American revolutionary tool. The WCC was the largest international ecumenical organization after the Vatican, representing some 550 million Christians of various denominations throughout 120 countries.
It sounds like a somewhat impossible goal. However, Pacepa explains that, in order to accomplish it, the KGB created an intermediary organisation, the Christian Peace Conference (CPC), headquartered in Prague:
The new Christian Peace Conference was managed by the KGB and was subordinated to the venerable World Peace Council, another KGB creation, founded in 1949 and by then also headquartered in Prague.
Pacepa said he managed the Romanian operations of the World Peace Council:
It was as purely KGB as it gets. Most of the WPC’s employees were undercover Soviet bloc intelligence officers … Even the money for the WPC budget came from Moscow, delivered by the KGB in the form of laundered cash dollars to hide their Soviet origin. In 1989, when the Soviet Union was on the verge of collapse, the WPC publicly admitted that 90% of its money came from the KGB3.
By 1968, the Christian Peace Conference was bearing fruit and:
was able to maneuver a group of leftist South American bishops into holding a Conference of Latin American Bishops at Medellin, Colombia. The Conference’s official task was to ameliorate poverty. Its undeclared goal was to recognize a new religious movement encouraging the poor to rebel against the “institutionalized violence of poverty,” and to recommend the new movement to the World Council of Churches for official approval.
The Medellin Conference achieved both goals. It also bought the KGB-born name “Liberation Theology.”
Pacepa thinks there was probably some active connection between the KGB and the most prolific authors of liberation theology books, but he has no concrete evidence. Yet:
I recently glanced through [Gustavo] Gutierrez’s book A Theology of Liberation: History, Politics, Salvation (1971), and I had the feeling that it was written at the Lubyanka. No wonder he is now credited with being the founder of Liberation Theology. From feelings to facts, however, is a long way.
Moral of the story: stick to the Gospel message as related in Scripture.
There are a lot of useful idiots, to borrow a Soviet expression, who have been drawn in by liberation theology, including prominent clergy. As a layperson, don’t be duped into feeling guilty for being a struggling member of the middle class who, in their eyes, has too much but, in reality, is just trying to have enough to live on.
The call for service is another aspect of this. Note that it’s not service to poor or otherwise needy members of your congregation but service to ‘the poor’, a general term encompassing much. Take care of your own congregation’s needs first, then exercise outreach to others.
In closing, after I wrote this post I read the comments to the CNA article. They were incredible. Many commenters did not believe what Pacepa said.
More fools they.
It is now understandable how Obama could have won two terms.
It is worse how none of these Catholics knows church history, especially from 120 years ago.
Please pray for these people.
May God grant them the grace and the Holy Spirit the discernment to recognise their error, through Jesus Christ our Lord, our only Mediator and Advocate. Amen.