Page 5, 20th April 1945

20th April 1945
Page 5
Page 5, 20th April 1945 — PRIEST IN RUSSIA OFFERS MASS FOR 11.S.

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Locations: Moscow, St. Louis


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Asking Divine guidance for this country's administration, the Rev. Leopold Braun, A.A., only Cathotic priest anoweu to [unction in Soviet Russia, Mimed a Votive Mass in the Church of St. Louis de Francais iii MIACOVi last month.

This was revealed by a radiogram from Ft. HI atm to a friend which said: " The American Catholic colony in Moscow will be united in prayer for their country's guidance. A Votive Mass will be held to-morrow morning imploring Divine guidance for the national administration. The American embassy, the military mission, the press, have been notified and invited.

Fre Braun, an Aseumptionist Father, is the only Catholic priest admitted into Russia since 1918 and, presently, the only one who is anowed to minister to Catholics in the whole Soviet Union. He was sent to Moscow in 1934 as result of the religious protocol to the mutual recognition agreement signed November 16, 1933, by Maxim Litvinoff and President Roosevelt.

Fr. Braun holds services in the French church, which is a small stone structure in central Moscow. Every Sunday he offers two Masses, one for the English-speaking worshippers, with the sermon in English. and another for French and Russian Catholics, with sermons in French and Russian. Besides these three languages, Fr. Braun also speaks German and Spanish fluently.

The Sunday congregations at St. Louis de Francais include several members of the U.S. embassy staff and the American military mission, as well as members of the ever-growing number of other foreign diplomatic missions. It is not unusual, it is said, to see Russians travelling several hundred miles towards Moscow to have their children haptised or .confirmed by Fr. Braun, or to go to confession to him and receive Holy Communion. Among these are Red Army men on leave from the front.

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