Round table: “Faith and freedom: a Lithuanian perspective” | Events | Department of Theology

This event will take place from 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m. (EDT) / 7:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. (EEST)

Chronicle of the Catholic Church in Lithuania, first published in March 1972, was the oldest and best-known underground periodical in the former Soviet Union. For 17 years, Catholic priests and nuns have published The Chronicle as a means of documenting religious persecution and other human rights violations perpetrated by Soviet authorities. A total of 81 issues were produced clandestinely and smuggled abroad, highlighting human rights abuses in Lithuania and elsewhere in the USSR. The English translations have reached wide audiences among democratic governments, Catholic bishops and clerics, the foreign press, international organizations and the public, including in Lithuania, radio networks such as Voice of America, Radio Liberty and Radio Vatican.

2022 is the year of The Chronicle of the Catholic Church in Lithuania, as declared by the Parliament of Lithuania, in recognition of the publication’s role in defending religious freedom during the Soviet occupation and in informing the national and international public about human rights violations by Soviets.

This webinar will contribute to this commemoration of The Chronicle, highlighting the idea behind its publication, the role of Catholic resistance and the contribution it made to the Soviet-era human rights movement.

The panel will be led by HE Gintaras Grušas, Archbishop of Vilnius, joined by prominent Lithuanian intellectuals. He will be introduced by HE Audra Plepyte, Ambassador of the Republic of Lithuania to the United States of America, and moderated by Gerard Powers, Professor and Director, Catholic Peacebuilding Network, University of Notre Dame.

The event will stream live from this event page at 12:00 p.m. EDT / 7:00 p.m. EEST on Wednesday, May 4.

Organized by the Nanovic Institute for European Studies, the Keough School of Global Affairs, the University of Notre Dame in partnership with the Embassy of the Republic of Lithuania, Washington DC, the Catholic Peacebuilding Network, and tCatholic University of America Institute of Human Ecology.

Introductory remarks

  • HE Audra Plepyte
    Ambassador of the Republic of Lithuania to the United States of America


  • SE Gintaras Grusas

    SE Gintaras Grusas
    Archbishop of Vilnius

  • Donatas Puslys

    Donatas Puslys
    Head of Media and Democracy Program, Vilnius Institute of Policy Analysis

  • Teacher.  Dr. Arūnas Streikus

    Teacher. Dr. Arūnas Streikus
    Director, Department of Contemporary History, University of Vilnius (Lithuania)

  • Teacher.  Dr. Irena Vaišvilaitė

    Teacher. Dr. Irena Vaišvilaitė
    Professor of Church and Art History, Vilnius University


  • Gerard Powers

    Gerard Powers
    Professor and Director, Catholic Peacebuilding Studies, University of Notre Dame

Image credit: St. Anne’s Church, Vilnius, Lithuania, 2018. Courtesy of on Flickr.

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