A petition signed by more than 200 council Fathers from 46 countries asking for a special schema on communism, Marxism and socialism has been handed in to Amleto Cardinal Cicognani, Papal Secretary of State. This was reported here by the Divine Word News Service.
The petition called communism and Marxism the “greatest and most dangerous heresy of this century.” It said that the “faithful will remain puzzled if the council does not treat a question of such great importance.”
The petition, contained in a bound volume, asks that Catholic social doctrine be set out clearly and that the “errors of Marxism, socialism and communism” be treated philosophically, sociologically and economically.
The petition asked for condemnation of the Marxist error that “any person in need or any nation in need can take from another person or another nation by force those goods which the person or nation attacked did not strictly need to keep alive.”
The petition said that this was being spread “even by teachers in the ranks of the clergy.”
The petitions warned against the peace line presently being taken by the Russians who are championing coexistence.
This momentary diminution of the rigor of political discipline creates the illusion that there is some evolution going on inside communist nations, the petition says.
Even though socialist countries deny the right to private property, the petition noted, “very many Catholics today consider such a government tolerable and think the Church is not essentially opposed to such a socialistic state.”
The movement to bring discussion of communism to the council floor was started by Archbishop Geraldo de Proenca Sigaud, SVD, of Diamantina, Brazil, and Bishop Antonio de Castro Mayer of Campos, Brazil, the Divine Word news agency said.