Religious community’s advice should have been asked for, Kondrusiewicz says

It was necessary to ask for the religious community’s advice before pulling down crosses at Kurapaty, Tadeusz Kondrusiewicz, chairman of the Conference of Catholic Bishops of Belarus, told reporters in Minsk on Tuesday.

“This is the time of the Great Lent and the cross is at the center of attention in Roman Catholic and Orthodox Christian churches. All Christians are worshiping the cross,” Msgr. Kondrusiewicz said. “Every Friday and on other days we say the Way of the Cross prayers. At the same time crosses are being pulled down. Whether or not there was permission for their installation is a different thing. I would like everything to be done according to the law, but when the crosses were being put up, nobody was particularly opposed. The cross is a symbol of Christianity. I am sure that it is probably necessary to landscape Kurapaty, but this could be done a different way.”

According to Msgr. Kondrusiewicz, if the public had been told about plans to landscape Kurapaty, there would be no negative reaction.

“It was necessary to invite representatives of various denominations and religions and say that there was a landscaping project and ask what could be done,” he said.

“Maybe a cross could have been moved aside a little to give way to machinery and returned to its place later on,” Msgr. Kondrusiewicz said. “I am sure that if this had been done, there would be no outcry and protests. But no such thing was done the first and second times. That is why I could not keep silent. It was the desecration of the cross.”