English II – 6th Period
Russian Revolution Essay
18 April, 2013
The Struggles for the Russian Orthodox Church
Imagine one day everything you once knew and trusted suddenly vanished? Well that is what happened to the members of the Russian Orthodox Church during the time of the Russian Revolution. The Russian empire was in decline and the Tsarist government that once gave the Church numerous privileges was overthrown. In October of 1917, within just a few months, the Bolsheviks took over in power and ordered separation of church and state. The new Communist government announced freedom of religious and anti-religious propaganda which made the power and the influence of the Church fall to the ground. The clergy of the church betrayed the people of their religion on a multitude of levels. The clergy sides with the Czar of Russia, which most people at that time, did not like. The church was opposing the revolution as well as working against the peasants instead of supporting them as they once did. Not everything went as planned for the Russian Orthodox Church. In a way, their plans back fired on them, nothing was going their way (A History of the Orthodox Church).
After the October Revolution the Soviet Union was the first state to get rid of religion as an ideological objective. Orthodox priests and believers were tortured. They were sent to prison camps, labor camps, and even mental hospitals (Russian Orthodox Church). In some cases, the torture got so violent that they were executed. Psychological punishment seemed to be very popular as well performing mind control experiments on many Orthodox. They would forcefully trick them into giving up their religious beliefs. This destroyed thousands of churches, being taken over by the government being turned to secular use. Practicing Christian Orthodox was not allowed to have important careers or membership in communist organizations (A History of the Orthodox Church).
November 7, 1917 marked the date the Soviet Union brought together everyone in a communist state…