Sunday, November 13, 2011

November 13 - Eugene Bossilkov, Martyr, Blessed, Enemy of the State

The trial was for show. Eugene knew it. The judge knew it. Everybody knew it. Yet, it allowed the Soviets to varnish over their fear and hatred with a thin patina of justice. While everybody watched, Eugene was paraded into the court and sat before a crowd hungry to condemn this enemy of the Party. Or, at least, they were hungry to move the Party's intense focus and hatred toward a sacrificial and innocent victim. Eugene was asked to testify on his behalf but Eugene was not allowed to tell his story.

Instead, a story was suggested to him where he was a revolutionary and a spy for Western Imperial powers. He insisted that this was a lie but the trial was never about finding out the truth and so it continued on as if he had said nothing or perhaps agreed with them. They paraded out evidence of guns and incriminating artifacts and papers. All of these items pointed even more strongly at the story that said Eugene was an insurrectionist and criminal. Of course,the guns were returned to the museum that they had been lifted from at the end of the day and nobody really cared much for the evidence--after all, they had already agreed on a verdict and sentence.
What nobody bothered to find out was how he had been born Vincent Bossilkov in Bulgariaand had pursued a calling as a Passionist monk. Nobody bothered to consider how joyous he had felt when he was ordained in 1926 and how his passion was to bring life and light to the Bulgarian people. They noticed that he had spent time studying in Rome and insisted that he had been trained to combat communism but they failed to point out that his personal passion had been taking care of the laity within the diocese he returned to. He had opportunities to exercise power and influence but was more interested in caring for the flock. Further, Eugene had not fled the Soviet conquest of Bulgaria after World War II and had, instead, remained to take care of those who were left behind. While the Soviets began implementing laws and directives designed to curtail, hinder, and eventually eliminate religion in Bulgaria Eugene was appointed Bishop. It was this appointment that hastened his arrest, trial, and death sentence.

Eugene was martyred on November 13, 1952 as an enemy of the State and opponent of the Party. Yet, he never raised a weapon in resistance and his only crime was loving a people he was ordered not to associate with.

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