MEN’S RELIGIOUS ORDERS IN SLOVAKIA BEFORE OPERATION K
Slovakia had seventeen men´s religious orders before Operation K – a number naturally lower than all male religious orders in the history of Slovakia within Hungary or in earlier periods.
In 1949, men´s orders and congregations owned and operated in 96 (some sources state 110 including monks’ houses) monasteries or communities with around 1,100 residents: nearly 400 priests serving the public, about 300 monks, and 320 inmates or aspirant juveniles. Over 1,320 persons (other sources state up to 1,470) lived and worked at Slovak men’s monasteries – the figure fluctuated due to teachers and adepts relocating, monks departing to missions, and migration between religious orders and countries. After the communist coup, Petrinians’ and Salvatorians’ efforts to settle in Slovakia were thwarted by the communist regime.
Male orders dedicated themselves to their historical and modern mission: contemplation, inner religious and monastic life, pastoral care, rectory management, spiritual service, health care, social service, care for the poor, old and abandoned, science, culture, education, and the press. Such strong and useful spiritual and social structure was the most serious ideological opposition to the communist regime’s class struggle and atheization of society.
The Basilians – The Order of St. Basil the Great, OSBM
The Basilian Order or Order of Saint Basil the Great (Ordo Sancti Basilii Magni, OSBM) was one of the oldest in post-war Slovakia, thought to have come to Great Moravia with Constantine and Methodius. The order focused on contemplation, youth education, and helping the sick. Even after the establishment of Hungary, the order had a Slavic character and the Basilians had hundreds of monasteries throughout Europe. Since the mid-17th century their monasteries were only established in the eastern part of Slovakia as an order of the Eastern Rite. In 1786, Joseph II abolished 30 Hungarian Basilian monasteries, but Pope Leo XIII restored the order in 1882. After they were expelled from Hungary, the Basilians withdrew to Slovakia after 1939, first formed their general delegation and in 1947 their province. In the 1940s, new monasteries were established in Trebišov and Prešov. Their only historical monastery survived in Krásny Brod near Medzilaborce. The monastery in Bukovec near Stropkov was damaged during World War II. The Basilians had three monasteries in 1948, the provincial had its seat and novitiate in Prešov. In 1948, the Basilians had 20 order members including 10 priests, six brothers, and four novices. As an order with an eastern rite loyal to Rome, they were targeted by the first religious liquidations by the communist regime.
From this order, bishops of the Mukachevo Eparchy had previously been selected with jurisdiction for the whole of Slovakia. The Prešov Eparchy was later separated from it. The last great bishop of the Basilian order was Pavol Peter Gojdič, OSBM, who died in Leopoldov prison in 1960 and was blessed in 2001. Shortly after the communist regime seized power, the Basilian monasteries were the first to be persecuted, especially in the spring of 1949…
The Benedictines – The Order of Saint Benedict, OSB
The Benedictines are among the oldest religious orders in Europe. They also worked in Great Moravia in Nitra’s Zobor 9th century abbey, as well as abbeys in Sv. Beňadik nad Hronom, Skalka near Trenčín, Klíže, and Lekýr. They had priories in Pogranice, Nové mesto nad Váhom, and Jánošovce, Štôla, and residences in Diakovce, Modra and Trnava. They disappeared or were incorporated into other orders during the Reformation, abolished during the reign of Joseph II, and were restored at the beginning of the 19th century. The Benedictines administered grammar schools in Bratislava, Trnava, and Komárno – where they had their own monastery until the 20th century. It belonged to the jurisdiction of the Pannonhalma Archdiocese until 1947, and in 1948, ten Benedictine priests lived there and had the parishes of Diakovce, Trávnik and Košúty.
The Dominicans – The Order of Preachers, OP (Dominican Order)
The Order was founded by St. Dominic in the early 13th century in Spain. Dominicans belonged to educated religious orders and taught at several universities. The Hungarian province was established in 1221. The first monastery in Slovakia was established in Košice in 1235, followed by Banská Štiavnica, Gelnica, Trnava, Kremnica, Veľký Šariš and Komárno. Joseph II abolished all these monasteries except Košice. After the first Vienna Arbitration in 1939, four Dominicans from Košice moved to a newly-founded monastery in Trenčín. So in 1948 the Dominicans in Slovakia had two monasteries, and eleven brothers – seven of which were priests. There were four clerics in Olomouc in the joint Czechoslovak general institute and novitiate. With Operation K, the regime primarily wanted to stop their pedagogical influence in schools. When the monasteries were being abolished, there were 15 Dominicans at Košice and Trenčín monasteries. An important figure in Košice’s religious as well as cultural and social life was Father J.M. Lexmann, OP.
The Franciscans (observants) Order of Lesser Brothers of St. Francis of Assisi, OFM
The Order was founded by the reformer of the Church St. Francis of Assisi in the early 13th century and gradually achieved many improvements in church life, folk religion, and education. At the beginning of the 17th century, it had 150,000 members in 9,000 monasteries. The order was divided into branches. From the former so-called minorities conventuals, the Franciscans–observants (today´s Franciscans) were separated in 1517 and from them the Capuchins in 1525. They all came from Francis´s rule and cooperated with each other. Today´s Franciscans (observants) had monasteries in Slovakia from the early 13th century in Trnava, Nitra, Bratislava, Partizánska Ľupča and Levoča, and from the 14th century in Trenčín, Okoličné, Spišská Nová Ves and Košice. In the 15th century, monasteries were established in Vranov, Solivar, Skalica and Fiľakovo. Up to 18th century they also arose in other smaller places, so in 1640 they had 40 monasteries in Slovakia and played a leading role in the recatholicization of Hungary. The number of Franciscans monasteries declined during the reign of Joseph II, but in the 19th century increased by 19 monasteries to about 220 order members. During the Hungarianization period, the Franciscans taught in Slovak language and in a patriotic spirit although that period affected their organizational structure by being affiliated into two other provinces where they were a minority compared to the number of Hungarian monasteries. The situation began to change after the establishment of the Czechoslovak Republic in 1918 and ended with the renewal of the Slovak Salvatorian Province in Bratislava in 1924. At that time, the Franciscans had the largest monasteries in Bratislava, Trnava, Malacky (where they had grammar school) and Žilina (where they had theological school). Other monasteries were in Nové Zámky, Trstená, Rožňava, Beckov, Fiľakovo, Okoličné and Košice, where during the reign of Joseph II a priestly seminary was established yet not returned by the state after 1938. They had other monasteries in Nitra, where they devoted themselves to spiritual service in the hospital, Nižná Šebastová, Báč – st. Anton, Pruské, Skalica, Hlohovec, Kremnica, Bardejov, and Prešov where they had a Juventutem, Commissariat of the Holy Land, and editorial office of Seraphic World and Friend of Children. In 1950 the order also still had a Slovak commissariat in the USA. In all places they helped pastoral care and education in schools. In 1948, this numerous and active religious order had in Slovakia 25 monasteries/houses, 106 priests, 87 religious brothers, 122 theologians, over 30 young adolescents, and 12 employees. These numbers represented a slight increase since the days of the Reforms of Joseph II (Josephine´s Reforms) and Hungarianization, as well as higher capacity for spiritual service and education – which helped the partial survival of Franciscans in parishes during the liquidation of orders.
The Jesuits, Society of Jesus, SJ
The Order was founded the mid-16th century in Spain. The founder was Ignatius from Loyola, who wrote the Spiritual Exercises as the basis of the Jesuits’ activities. The order devoted itself to education, missions, and the deepening of Christian life. In the mid16th century the Jesuits also settled in Hungary, first in 1561 in Trnava, and then Kláštor pod Znievom and Šaľa. They were extremely active in the process of re-catholicization. Growth continued in the 17th century with the founding of a monastery in Košice. The most important educational achievements in Hungary include the founding of Trnava University in 1635 and Košice University in 1657. In the following decades until the abolition of the order in 1773, Jesuit houses were built in Humenné, Bratislava, Banská Bystrica, Trenčín, Skalica, Levoča, Banská Štiavnica, Komárno, Prešov, Rožňava, Bzovík, Spišská kapitula, Žilina and Leopoldov, and in the 18th century in Liptovský Mikuláš, Pezinok, and other localities. Besides spiritual activities, the Jesuits also devoted themselves to education in grammar schools, science, languages and book printing. The order survived in Russia after the abolition, and in 1814 the Pope restored it. The Jesuits again returned to Slovakia in the mid-19th century to Trnava and Bratislava. The Hungarian province came into existence in 1909. After the establishment of the Czechoslovak Republic, the Czechoslovak Vice-Province was founded and there was a new expansion of the order. New monasteries and houses were established in Ružomberok, a catholic dormitory in Košice, a residence in Spišská Nová Ves, a small seminary in Levoča, a philosophical institute and small seminary in Piešťany, and during the World War II an institute in Banská Bystrica and a boarding school in Ivanka pri Dunaji. In modern history, the activity of the Jesuits expanded to include the social apostolate, education of youth in Marian congregations, folk missions, publishing, and spiritual exercises. In 1948 there were 47 priests, 53 brothers, 35 adepts of order – scholastics, and 13 employees in nine Jesuit monasteries, schools and facilities, i.e. almost 150 people. The communist regime targeted the Jesuits’ educational and intellectual potential after 1948.
During Operation K, the Jesuits were kept isolated since the regime considered them the most dangerous and reactionary monks, being separately concentrated at Jasov monastery.
The Capuchins, The Order of Friars Minor Capuchin, OFM. Cap.
The Order was founded in 1525 in Italy by its separation from the observant branch of the Franciscans. They spread throughout the Christian world in following decades. The Capuchins devoted themselves to pastoral care and folk missions. They founded three monasteries in Slovakia since 1674 – in Pezinok, Bratislava, and Holíč. The monastery in Holíč was abolished by Joseph II, but the other two survived and in 1928 formed an independent commissariat for Slovakia. Nevertheless, from 1932 they passed down the Czech –Moravian province. During the Slovak Republic from 1939 to 1945, they again became independent. After World War II, the Slovak Commissariat was established as the first ecclesiastical and legal unit under the direct administration of a Roman visitor. In Slovakia, the Capuchins devoted themselves mainly to the recatholicization of the German population, and later also the Slovak population. The Capuchin Church in Bratislava was popular with Empress Maria Theresa. They had a novitiate in Pezinok since 1942. In 1948, the Capuchins in those two former monasteries had 13 priests, 13 brothers, eight students of theology, as well as seven novices and 28 juveniles.
During Operation K, superiors of male religious orders from all over Slovakia and other “most reactionary” monks were gathered at the Capuchin monastery in Pezinok – which was then referred to as a “disciplinary monastery”.
The Lazarists (Vincentians) Congregation of the Mission of Saint Vincent de Paul, CM
The Order, named after the conventions of St. Lazarus in Paris, was founded by priest St. Vincent de Paul in 1630. The order takes care of the pastoral care of the poor, the reviving of priests, missions, and the spiritual guidance of the sisters St. Vincent (Daughters of Charity of St. Vincent de Paul). The order spread throughout the Christian world. At the beginning of the 20th century, Czech infirmarists worked in Slovakia and in 1922 established the Czechoslovak province of the Vincentian sisters. From 1929, the Lazarists had a central house in Ladce, where they also had a novitiate. They founded an apostolic school for novices in Banská Bystrica. They set up a house for theologians at the Svoradov boarding school in Bratislava. Their spiritual exercise house in Belušské Slatiny was also a convalescent home for children from the Society of St. Elizabeth. The Slovak Vice-Province of Lazarists was established in 1942, and by 1948 had four religious houses for nine priests, 10 brothers, and five novices, as well as 19 students, i.e. 43 people in total. Until the violent liquidation in 1950, the Lazarists had also worked pastorally at Ilava prison.
The Merciful Brothers, the Hospitaller Order of Saint John of God, OH
The congregation was founded in 1540 in Spain by St. John of God. In 1617, it was promoted by the Pope to the order that was mainly devoted to free assistance to the sick and abandoned in hospitals, and old people´s homes. The order successfully spread to Africa and India. In 1948 they ran 177 hospitals. In the mid-17th century, the Merciful Brothers settled in Spišské Podhradie with a convent and hospital. In 1672 they founded a convent and a hospital in Bratislava. In 1796 they took charge of the defunct monastery and Carmelite hospital Skalica, and in the 1940s built a new hospital. The Czechoslovak Province of the Merciful Brothers was established in 1921. In 1939, the Slovak Vice-province was established and by 1948 had three monasteries and three hospitals, where they had eight priests, 27 brothers and 86 employees (mainly doctors and paramedics). The Hospitals of Merciful Brothers were important medical facilities during Operation K, so the communists liquidated only the monastery in Bratislava and concentrated the monks from Bratislava in 1951 and from Skalica in 1955. However, State Security succeeded in liquidating the Spišské Podhradie monastery during Operation K, with seven local monks moved to Podolínec.
The Minorites, The Order of Friars Minor Conventual, OFM Conv.
The Minorites, the original order of St. Francis of Assisi, was founded in 1209. They established monasteries–convents where they studied theology, hence their name. The most famous minority convents in present day Italy were in Assisi, Padua, Bologna and Florence. The order became worldwide. The Minorites were concerned with science, preaching, missionary and pastoral work. They again settled in Slovakia in the late 17th century in Levoča, where they had supposedly first settled in the mid-13th century. They had a boarding school for juveniles (grammar school students), then in nearby Spišský Štvrtok where they had a novitiate for Czechoslovak province and two branches in Dravce and Dlhé Stráže. In the mid-18th century a Minorite convent was established in Brehov near Trebišov. Finally, they founded a monastery with a spiritual exercise house in Stráže pod Tatrami in 1941. Nine priests, four brothers, two employees and 24 postulants lived and worked in these four Minorite monasteries in 1948.
The Pallottines, The Society of the Catholic Apostolate, SAC
This order originated in Rome in the early 19th century with the aim to assist pastoral care, spiritual administration, and missions. In a relatively short time, the Pallottines founded more than 400 religious houses and attracted about 2,200 members. Their only house in Slovakia was founded in Handlová in 1938. One priest and one theologian lived there in 1948.
The Piarists, The Order of Poor Clerics Regular of the Mother of God of the Pious Schools, SchP
The order was established by St. Joseph Calasanctius in the late 16th century. He was glad to found and run free scholae piae (pious schools) for poor youth, hence the Piarists. The order spread in Europe and America. There were 13 monasteries (colleges) in Slovakia within the Hungarian province since the 18th century, along with well-known grammar schools. In the 17th century the first three were established in Podolínec, Prievidza and Brezno. Between 1701–1815 others followed in Svätý Jur, Nitra, Krupina, Ružomberok, and Sabinov, and higher economic schools in Senec, Tomášikovo, Trenčín, Banská Štiavnica and Levice. Piarist grammar schools educated experts in various scientific fields and public administration. However, the Slovak Piarists were first under Polish influence, then during the reign of Joseph II Germanization, and then Hungarianization. By the late 19th century, some grammar schools closed while others moved to Hungary after the establishment of the Czechoslovak Republic. The Piarists kept only four colleges within the independent Slovak province since 1930: in Prievidza, Nitra, Trenčín, and their novitiate in Svätý Jur. However, the Czechoslovak government even put these schools under state control and banned Piarists from teaching. A number of important Hungarian and Slovak figures graduated from Piarist schools. But from being the third most developed order prior to 1948, the Piarists then had in Slovakia just four monasteries with 14 priests, two theologians, five novices, and 19 employees.
The Premonstratensians, OPraem
The order is one of the oldest, founded in 1120 in present-day France on the basis of the Rules of St. Augustine. The name is derived from the Prémontré valley, where the first monastery was established and others quickly spread throughout Europe. The Premonstratensian Order spread respect to the Eucharist, faithfulness to the Pope, and love of science and the arts. In the 18th century they had 240 monasteries in Europe. Yet their number decreased under the pressure of the French Revolution and in Austria-Hungary during the reign of Joseph II. They settled in Slovakia in Jasov and Leles where they had an abbey and priory, and had other abbeys in Kláštor pod Znievom, Šahy, Bzovík and Bíň. The Leles priory in the Middle Ages was called a trustworthy place with a rich archive, while Jasov priory founded in the 12th century by Hungarian King Koloman was also a credible place. It survived the Josephine reforms, and later the Premonstratensian Order was tasked by the emperor to teach at grammar schools in Rožňava, Levoča and Košice. After the establishment of the Czechoslovak Republic, the state closed grammar schools that had been subject to Hungarianization, so the Premonstratensian monks worked in monasteries in Leles and Jasov and in parishes in the Czechoslovak Cirkaria. In 1948, the Premonstratensian monks in Slovakia had two monasteries, eight priests, four theologians, and two brothers.
During Operation K the Jesuits were concentrated at Jasov monastery, while the Premonstratensian were concentrated at Podolínec. During the subsequent Operation R, nuns were also concentrated at Jasov.
The Redemptorists, The Congregation of the Most Holy Redeemer, CSsR
The Order was founded in the mid-18th century in present-day southern Italy by Alphonsus Maria de Liguori. The Pope approved it as the Congregation of the Most Holy Redeemer (Congregatio Sanctissimi Redemptoris), hence the the Redemptorists. The order spread throughout Europe thanks to Moravian St. Klement Mário Hoffbauer, and devoted itself to folk missions, spiritual exercises and catechesis. The order influenced Slovakia from Czechia. After the establishment of Czechoslovakia, the Redemptorists settled in Stropkov, where both the Latin and Eastern branches of the Redemptorists operated with an effort to act amidst the Greek Catholic and Orthodox population. The Bishop of Spiš Vojtaššák located them in an abandoned Piarist monastery in Podolínec, before moving to Stráže near Poprad and returning to Podolínec in 1940 for their mission and spiritual house. In 1923, they settled in Kostolná near Trenčín and on behalf of the Bishop of Nitra Karol Kmeťko they administrated the place of pilgrimage Skalka near Trenčín. In 1931, they opened the Monastery of the Eastern Rite in Michalovce where they had a novitiate, juvenile, and theological studies. They operated among the Greek Catholics of eastern Slovakia and Subcarpathian Ruthenia. The monastery in Michalovce with 50 persons was the largest Redemptorist and continued to develop, from the 1930s opening monasteries in Bratislava, Staré Hory, Stropkov, Sabinov and Rožňava where they had a juvenile and led an episcopal seminary. The monasteries first belonged to the Prague province, and then in 1940 a vice-province was established in Bratislava. The Eastern Rite vice-province based in Michalovce was separated from it after the war. They rebuilt the war-damaged monastery in Stropkov. Several Slovak Redemptorists studied in the Czech Republic at Obořiště and Červenka in Moravia. In 1948 the order of both rites in Slovakia had 10 monasteries, 30 priests and 30 brothers, six theologians, two clerics, five novices, 27 juveniles, and two candidates. In the Greek Catholic province they had three monasteries, 11 priests, 10 brothers, three theologians, five novices, and 27 juveniles. The Redemptorists thus belonged to the religious orders that the communists considered the most dangerous – both in terms of number and activity, but also in their resistance to the regime’s plans for the Orthodoxization of the Greek Catholic Church in the Czechoslovak Republic after 1948.
A leading Redemptorist figure was priest Metod Dominik Trčka, CSsR, superior of the Vice-Province of the Eastern Rite. After being interned in Podolínec, he was convicted in a trial with P.P. Gojdič. He died in Leopoldov prison in 1959, and was blessed in 2001.
The Salesians of Don Bosco, The Society of Saint Francis de Sales, SDB
The Society of St. Francis of Sales order was founded in 1859 in Italy by the Priest of Turin, St. John Bosco. His ideal was to help poor youth and children in keeping with the creed: Give me souls, take away the rest! From the beginning of his priestly career, John Bosco devoted himself to Turin’s poor young people socially affected by industrialization. Bosco founded shelters, schools, and oratories. The order successfully spread thanks to Sunday oratories, workshops, economic schools and grammar schools, youth education institutes, care for emigrants, missionary service, and the apostolate press. The female branch founded by Don Bosco as Daughters of the Virgin Mary’s Helper helped the order, as well as associations of Salesian fellow-workers and former inmates. The Selesians were trained in Italy in the early 20th century, and in 1924 arrived in Slovakia. They founded the Marianum educational institution in the former Pauline monastery in Šaštín, where about 50 young people were accommodated. Here they also managed the Šaštín pilgrimage church of Virgin Mary of the Seven Sorrows and ran a successful grammar school. The Salesian work grew, and so from 1929 more monasteries and schools were added in Sv. Beňadik nad Hronom where they had a novitiate, Bratislava-Miletičova Street where the seat of the inspectorate was located, in Trnava on Hollého Street with a small seminary of almost 200 students, Bratislava-Trnávka, and Žilina. An independent Slovak province was established in 1939. In the 1940s, other centres increased in Trnava on Kopánka, as well as Michalovce, Topoľčany and Nitra, after World War II in Komárno, Sv. Kríž nad Hronom where they led a theological school, and in Hody near Galanta where they had a student institute where dozens of Salesian educators and priests attended to hundreds of students and young people. The communist regime also considered the Salesians to be its ideological enemy. In 1948, the Slovak Office for Ecclesiastical Affairs registered more than 760 Salesians, almost 240 of which with monastic vows. They lived and worked in 13 institutes and monasteries. After the communist coup, the Salesians had 77 priests, 50 brothers, 21 assistants, 26 theologians, 74 clerics, 45 novices, 22 employees, and 436 secular students. Their work grew in Slovakia for 25 years, so were one of the first targets of the regime’s attacks against religious orders.
The School Brothers, The Congregation of Christian Brothers, FSC
The Congregation of the Christian Brothers was founded in 1680 in France. The Order dedicates itself to young people and their education at various levels of schools around the world. It has over 2,300 homes and 25,000 members. They came to Slovakia in 1899 in Urmín (today’s Mojmírovce) near Nitra, where they settled at a school, and then in Bojná where they established a school and religious juvenate, burgher´s school, and boarding school. After the establishment of the Czechoslovak province, they created a novitiate at a new monastery in Močenok. Their graduates were allowed to study at the Roman Catholic Teachers’ Institute at the Spišská Kapitula. Dozens of school brothers served in missions. Up to 1948, in addition to the existing monasteries, the school brothers ran a teaching institute at the Spišská Kapitula, in Bánovce nad Bebravou, an educational institute in Slovenská Ľupča, an apprentice house in Bratislava, and schools in Zákamenné, Lom and Horná Kráľová. They operated in 13 places, but until 1950 had only the original three due to nationalization. From that year they had three monasteries, 46 brothers, six novices, 12 juveniles, and 10 schoolchildren.
The Comforters of the Divine Heart, Congregation of the Comforter Brothers of Gethsemane, CCG
The Congregation of the Comforters of the Divine Heart (from Gethsemane) was founded in 1922 in Vienna by the Czech priest Jan Litomiský. The purpose of the order is to adore the Divine Heart for the atonement of sinners, spiritual service in hospitals, and folk missions among the Slavic nations. The order general is in Vienna. They came to Slovakia in 1927 and settled in the former Pauline monastery in Marianka near Bratislava, where they took over the administration of the pilgrimage site and parish. From 1929 to 1947 they founded other houses in Borinka and Bratislava, where they educated theologians. In Zlaté Moravce, they similarly educated their priestly youth. The Comforters also temporarily had a novitiate in Levice. From 1940 they administered the parish of Sokolovce. In 1948, the comforters had 6 monasteries/homes, 17 priests and 16 brothers, two theologians, 18 novices, 14 students, and four employees. The Central Congregation of the Comforters in Vienna served as a detention center for refugees from Czechoslovakia, especially after 1948.
The Verbists, The Society of the Divine Word, SVD
The order was founded in 1875 by Dutch priest Arnold Jansen. The main goal of the Verbists is missionary activity, especially in non-Christian countries. For that reason they educate their youth and spread missionary ideas through popular missions and the press. The order quickly spread throughout Europe and formed missionaries. In Slovakia, at the parish in Madunice in 1922 the Verbists administered their magazine Verbum, published in Austria. In 1923, the Bishop of Nitra Karol Kmeťko provided them with a monastery in Močenka, and in 1925 they received the monastery of the Mother of God on Calvary as a gift where they built a mission house that was consecrated in 1928. They established another monastery and mission house in Vidina, where the sisters of the Congregation of the Servants of the Holy Spirit also settled. In 1929, Bishop Ján Vojtaššák rented a bishop’s residence to the Verbists in Spišský Štiavnik where they had a mission home. They set up another house in Nitra pod Zoborom for the education of priests, juveniles and missionaries, as well as a spiritual exercise house. The Slovak Province of the Verbists was established in 1942 with its headquarters in Nitra on Calvary, where they also established a religious press center. All this indicated the dynamic development and positive response to the order’s missionary activity in just a quarter of a century. In 1948, the Verbists in Slovakia had 4 monasteries, 24 priests, 46 brothers, and their youth and staff consisted of a respectable 15 theologians, 23 clerics, 13 candidates, 44 novices, six members, as well as 247 students, and 32 employees and teachers. Before Operation K in 1950, the Verbists had 421 secondary school students, 63 clerics, 35 religious brothers, and 52 priests.
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