Before Easter a petition with the following contents was sent to Moscow from somewhere in the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic (so that the KGB of the LSSR would not confiscate it):
"To: L. Brezhnev, General-Secretary of the CPSU, Moscow
A Petition from the Catholics of the City
of Klaipėda, the LSSR
"During the years 1956-1961, a Catholic church was built and completely furnished in Klaipėda with funds provided by the believers and with the permission of the Council of Ministers of Lithuania. The authorities, however, did not permit its use and made it into a philharmonic hall.
"The building in which Catholic services are now held is unsuitable, in poor condition, and small; and during holy days the faithful are forced to stand in the street.
Just the fact that permission had been granted for building a church in Klaipėda indicates that the present structure in which services are being held is not suitable.
"We believers appeal to you, asking and hoping that you would understand our aspirations and would soon normalize the situation by correcting the injustice inflicted upon the believers and returning the church built with our funds.
"This appeal is supported by the following signatures. ...
Klaipėda, the LSSR
March 19, 1972"
The petition was signed by 3,023 believers.
So far only the KGB has responded to the appeal from the residents of Klaipėda. Because the petition to Moscow was sent with Jonas Saunorius' return address, the KGB summoned him as many as three times in their desire to find out who had initiated-organized the petition. For similar reasons Commissioner Rugienis summoned Saunorius to Vilnius.
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On Easter Sunday in 1972, during the services, KGB agents apprehended two amateur photographers, who wanted to photograph the throng of believers praying outside the church. The photographers were accused of allegedly taking pictures to be sent abroad. "They're waiting with outstretched arms for these pictures over there," said the security officials, upbraiding them.
The people of Klaipėda are once again planning to appeal to the USSR government asking for the return of their church.