Lukšiai (Šakiai Rayon)

    In 1978 at the Lukšiai Secondary School eighth-grader [Miss] Birutė Alytaitė was enrolled in the Communist Youth League without her parent's knowledge. The Šakiai Rayon newspaper (May 13, 1978) even printed a small news item stating that the work of the school produced results since even the girl's mother had been convinced to change her mind. [Mrs.] Alytienė went to see her daughter's homeroom teacher, [Mrs.] Adomaitienė, and firmly stated: "We are believers and our faith forbids us to belong to godless organizations." The homeroom teacher assured her that the Communist Youth League would not harm the girl, but the mother would not yield, "You only want parents to take care of children, wash their dirty clothes and cover all educational expenses; but the child is not to be reared by his parents but by the school or state. That won't happen! Please arrange matters to show that my daughter never was a member of the Communist Youth League."

    After this conversation Alytienė and her daughter went to see the Šakiai Rayon Communist Youth Committee and saw to it that her daughter was not only withdrawn from the Communist Youth, but that the documents were corrected in such a fashion that it would be clear that she had never belonged to the Communist Youth.

    Alytienė suffered the consequences of her courage. She was employed as a cook at the Lukšiai Secondary School. The school administration made her work conditions such that Alytienė was forced to leave her job.


    The Prienai Rayon Education Department sent Prienai parents a reply to their complaint regarding the persecution of school children at Prienai Secondary School no. 2. Among other things, the reply stated:

    "In implementing total freedom of conscience, a vital role is played by the constitutionally guaranteed freedom of atheistic convictions and their propagation. The dissemination of scientific atheistic concepts is one of the basic tasks of the Soviet school. In school, school children are not interrogated about their faith; talks and debates are held on the subject with school children. Schoolchildren are not forced to draw atheistic pictures. It has not been established that S. Kuras, who is in charge of after-class and after-school educational programs, has behaved brutally toward schoolchildren or called them coarse names." (see the complaint of believing parents, The Chronicle, no. 41).


    On December 1, 1979, [Mrs.] Julija Nausedienė, the mother of six children returned home from the hospital. On the way, she was stopped by two Pašilė teachers, [Mrs.] Pocienė and [Mrs.] Aranauskienė, who began to moralize about her son, Juozas, a ninth-grader, serving at mass. Aranauskienė, a zealous party employee, stated:

    "Nausedienė, just look at the impression your child makes. He stands at the altar wearing a surplice, and the old sacristan is his friend. How he shames Soviet youth! His home is hung with holy pictures; a cross stands among his books on the table. We are distressed to see such objects at the homes of our pupils."

    "My children are not thieves or drunkards, and I will not forbid them to visit either the pastor or the sacristan," the reviled mother, weeping, said no more.

    While teachers terrorize believing children and their parents for attending church, drunk hooligans besiege Lithuania's towns and villages. For example, on December 2 a group of Pašilė Communist Youth League members drank while services were held and later killed a man with a brick near the Karklėnai Cultural Center. Teachers who have not sold their consciences for thirty pieces of silver should agonize over this and not over a boy who serves at mass.

Kybartai (Vilkaviškis Rayon)

    On February 23, 1980, all grade 6B pupils at the Kybartai Secondary school were lined up for the Marching and Song Contest. Those children who were not members of the Pioneers were not wearing neck scarves. When the homeroom teacher was unable to force non-Pioneers to put on neck scarves, she recruited the assistance of Assistant Principal Verika. He immediately ordered scarves to be found and tied on the children. A majority of the children yielded to force; only one student, [Miss] Rita Griškaitytė, resisted. Assistant Principal Verika shouted in rage: "Collect your junk and get out of the school!"

    The girl related the incident to her parents. Rita's father went to see Verika and demanded a written explanation of why he had chased his daughter from the school, but Verika' refused. He claimed he wanted to tie the neck scarf on the girl so that everyone would be in identical uniform. Rita Griškaitytė then resolutely stated: "I don't want to be a hypocrite: using a rosary at church and a neck scarf in school. The neck scarf is a symbol of the Pioneers, and I'm not a Pioneer; therefore, I won't wear it!"


    On December 24, 1979, in Kretinga Secondary School no. 1, the grade 2A homeroom teacher, [Mrs.] Stakenienė, ordered the pupils who attend church to raise their hands (almost the entire class did so). The teacher then began to question each believing student in turn:

    "Do you go to church often?"
    "With whom do you go?"
    "Will you be receiving First Holy Communion?" 
    "Do you know your prayers?"


    At the beginning of the 1978-79 academic year, a grade 6A parents' meeting was held at Tauragė Secondary School no. 5. Following the meeting, homeroom teacher [Mrs.] A. Krikštaponiene tried to talk [Miss] Aurelija Saveikytė's mother into allowing her daughter to join the Pioneers. If she joined, the girl would still be able to attend church. Later she would not have to join the Communist Youth League. The principal was demanding that all schoolchildren would join the Pioneers.

    On December 3,1979, Krikštaponienė, a teacher, gave her pupils questions on religion, demanding written replies. Aurelija Saveikytė replied as follows: "In school I only answer questions on the curriculum. The Constitution affirms the freedom of belief." The teacher kept Aurelija after school and again demanded specific information regarding her faith.

    "Your mother was a teacher. She can explain to you that you must answer any given questions."

    Aurelija replied:

    "That is why my mother no longer works in a school so that she would not have to give atheistic lectures or coerce children."

Barstyčiai (Skuodas Rayon)

    In February 1979 Mr. Žeimys, manager of the Barstyčiai State Farm, was demoted because his eight-year-old son went to church. He now works as a group leader.

Simnas (Alytus Rayon)

    On January 4, 1980, the Simnas Secondary School instructor and grade 9B homeroom teacher Antanas Sitka asked his students who among them go to church of their own volition. The entire class stood up. Then came a second question: "Which of you are pressured by your parents to go to church?" No one stood up.

    Later Sitka ridiculed them, saying he would state on a questionnaire that the entire class went to church because of parental pressure. The students all spoke up as one: "When representatives from the Ministry of Education come, well tell them that the questionnaire contains lies."

Sidabravas (Radviliškis Rayon)

    During a nature class on November 11, 1979, the third grade homeroom teacher, [Mrs.] Zaleckienė, who is secretary to the Sidabravas Secondary School party organizer, called believing children religious bigots, ignoramuses, and retards.

    Believing children are forced to discuss atheistic topics; grade 6A homeroom teacher Petras Bajoriūnas ordered student Vilius Staškūnas to write a composition on "Does the Cross Help to Study?" for an atheistic program.

    The atheist leader, [Mrs.] Giedraitienė, a teacher, plans to put atheistic drawings which ridicule in the foulest ways the saints, priests, and believers on display.

    An atheistic week was held during February 4-9,1980. Giedraitienė scheduled an atheistic composition contest. She demanded compositions from believing students as well. On February 2 she ordered grade 8B student Arvydas Lotužis to write an atheistic composition, but the boy refused.

    On February 8 all students were taken after the fifth period to hear an atheistic lecture being given by a former monk, Gedgaudas. Those who wanted to escape the lecture were not given their coats from the cloakroom. The lecturer asserted that God belongs only in bathrooms, predicted the downfall of religion, urged students to join atheist organizations, called priests exploiters and the Sidabravas sacristan, Petras Blažukas — a seminarian — a destroyer of Soviet youth.