Loading
AK-47 designer felt 'unbearable' pain for rifle deaths
An Iranian soldier standing guard with an AK-47. Credit: US Army/Spc. Tiffany Dusterhoft/Released.
An Iranian soldier standing guard with an AK-47. Credit: US Army/Spc. Tiffany Dusterhoft/Released.

.- According to a Russian daily, Mikhail Kalashnikov wrote a letter more than six months before his death expressing repentance for his design of the AK-47 assault rifle.

“My spiritual pain is unbearable,” Kalashnikov wrote in a letter to the head of the Russian Orthodox Church, Kirill I, according to the Jan. 13 issue of Izvestia.

“I keep having the same unsolved question: since my rifle killed people, can it be that I... a Christian and an Orthodox believer, was to blame for their deaths?”

Kalashnikov was was born in 1919 in Soviet Russia, and fought in World War II, eventually becoming a weapons designer.

His AK-47 is among the most widely used firearms in the world, and has long been popular in less developed countries for its simplicity and reliability; it was used by North Vietnamese forces in the Vietnam War. He had long abjured responsibility for the gun's uses.

Kalashnikov died Dec. 23, following a hospital admittance for internal bleeding. He was 94.

Izvestia provided an image of the letter written to Patriarch Kirill, which the BBC said is typed on Kalashnikov's personal writing paper and is signed by “a slave of God, the designer Mikhail Kalashnikov.”

Nearing his death, it seems Kalashnikov was troubled by the problem of evil, reportedly writing, “The longer I live, the more this question drills into my brain, the deeper I go in my thoughts and guesses about why the Lord allowed man to have the devilish desires of envy, greed and aggression.”

He noted that despite the “increasing number of churches and monasteries”  in Russia, “evil still does not decrease.”

He went on to praise the Russian Orthodox Church, which he said brings “kindness and mercy” to the world. Kalashnikov lauded Kirill, the Patriarch of Moscow, for his “pastoral wisdom” and assistance to the Russian Orthodox laity.

Raised in the Soviet Union, Kalashnikov was not baptized into the Russian Orthodox Church until he was 91.

“The Lord showed me the way in the afternoon of my life … when at the age of 91, I crossed the threshold of a church, my soul felt as if it had been there before.”

His letter recounted planting a sapling from his birthplace, the Siberian village of Kurya, at a church in his home, Izhevsk, located 750 miles east of Moscow.

“People will look at the church and the tree, and think about the proximity of these two eternal symbols of goodness and life. And my soul shall be joyful, watching from the heavenly heights for this beauty and grace.”

Izvestia was told by Patriarch Kirill's spokesman, Alexander Volkov, that the patriarch had replied to Kalashnikov, calling him a patriot and telling him that the Russian Orthodox have “a very definite position: when weapons serve to protect the Fatherland, the Church supports both its creators and the soldiers who use it.”

Tags: Kalashnikov, Russian Orthodox Church, Patriarch Kirill


Ads by AdsLiveMedia(What's this?)
Ads by Google
(What's this?)

* The number of messages that can be online is limited. CNA reserves the right to edit messages for content and tone. Comments and opinions expressed by users do not necessarily reflect the opinions or beliefs of CNA. CNA will not publish comments with abusive language, insults or links to other pages

RESOURCES »

Ads by Google (What's this?)

Featured Videos

The renewal of the Legionaries of Christ
The renewal of the Legionaries of Christ
Presentation of the book "The Pastor"
Synod on the Family October 2014
Preferential option for the poor
God is alive, even in sport
'A forbidden God' named Best Film at the International Catholic Film Festival
Vatican backs a 'Pause for Peace' during World Cup final
The effects of religious violence in Sarajevo 
The origin of Corpus Christi 
Corpus Christi at the Vatican 
Homage to an Indian Cardinal
Train of the Child's Light
New book explaining gestures of the Mass
Encounter between Pope Francis and the Charismatic Renewal in the Spirit Movement.
Religious tensions subside amid Balkan floods
John Paul II Center for Studies on Marriage and Family
Saint John Paul II on cartoon
Syrian Christian refugees
Papal Foundation Pilgrimage
Exorcism or prayer of liberation?
Jul
23

Liturgical Calendar

July 23, 2014

Wednesday of the Sixteenth Week in Ordinary Time

All readings:
Today »
This year »

Catholic Daily

Gospel of the Day

Mt 13:1-9

Gospel
Date
07/23/14
07/20/14
07/19/14

Daily Readings


First Reading:: Jer 1:1, 4-10
Gospel:: Mt 13: 1-9

Saint of the Day

St. John Cassian »

Saint
Date
07/23/14

Homily of the Day

Mt 13:1-9

Homily
Date
07/23/14
07/21/14
07/20/14

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com
     HTML
Text only
Headlines
  

Follow us: