What is the salary in the USSR was given to the priests

History 15/01/20 What salary in the USSR received the priests

Priests in the Soviet Union experienced a different time and attitude from the authorities: from brutal repression to the soft liberalism. This directly affected the incomes of the clergy.

More than the official

Until the beginning of 1960-ies of all the clergy in the Soviet Union received a salary depending on cash receipts to the Church office. The latter depended on the performance of rituals and prayers, donations, and sales of goods of own manufacture of candles, icons and other paraphernalia of religious use.

According to the document on “On income tax of population” of the clergy were added to the “nekupirovanny craftsmen”. For this category of citizens, income tax (one among other taxes, which are levied by the priests) was progressive. With an annual income up to 1800 roubles rate was the minimum 4%, maximum tax of up to 80% paid those priests who had an annual revenues of over USD 70 001 rubles.

On the basis of tax declarations, which were sent to the clergy of the Northern Urals employees of tax services, you can set the range of their incomes before the war. Thus, the annual cash receipts from priests Solikamsk, Kungur, the city of Chusovoy ranged from 80-250 thousand rubles., remote from the regional centers districts they do not exceed 10 thousand. The range of monthly earning of the money was from 200 to 20 thousand rubles. As a rule, the incomes of the rural priests were ten times less than the incomes of the city clergy.

during the war many of the Ural priests actively helped the red Army, sacrificing in defense of the Fatherland a lot of money. For example, Protopresbyter Pasvitinio only for 1942 money and bonds sent to the front about 85 thousand rubles., and the community of the Archangel Michael Church of Kushva in November 1944 he transferred 100 thousand rubles for the needs of ABeacii.

In the second half of 1950-ies together with the Khrushchev thaw, there has been a liberalization of the relations of the Church to the party. As the historian Alexei Marchenko in his study of the economic life of the Russian Orthodox Church, at this time, the authorities significantly increase the salaries and pensions of clergy, that is 3-4 times higher than the average for the country.

23 may 1956, out the resolution of Council of Ministers of the USSR under which Soviet legislation now applies to everyone who works in the religious sphere. After the entry into force of the decision in Church organization drew a lot of retirees here could count on salaries from 500 to 4000 rubles. per month. For example, in 1957 a work Perm diocesan management workshop candlestick earn 4000 RUB, chef – 3000 RUB., accountant – 2000 RUB.

For comparison, the average salary in the USSR in 1957 was 800 RUB., the official, the Commissioner for religious Affairs, received 1150 rubles. Most benefits were employees of Church organizations and retirement, which was several times higher than the national average. In 1958 the religious structures of the USSR worked to 15 thousand hired staff.

Limited, but not deprived

Ordinary Soviet citizens soon reacted to the unjust from their point of view, the distribution of wages, burying the power flow of the letters focused on the blatant enrichment of the clergy. In January 1959 was followed by a private meeting of the Council for Russian Orthodox Church Affairs, which criticized the policy of the Church. At the meeting it was reported that unwarranted payments to employees of the Church sector exceeded 15 million rubles.

it Was decided to cease social services civilian personnel of the Church, to dissolve the trade unions in religious associations and to reduce as possible the number of clergy. In 1961, the decree on the tax increase for all Ministers of religious worship. As a result, total revenues of the ROC decreased by 10-15%. Religious dissident Andrei Kuptsov, in his book “the Myth of the persecution of the Church in the USSR” notes that within 10 years the new law of the Church in the ranks of the Soviet Union left about 30% of the clergy, Recalling the dire financial situation.

All priests instead of piecework payment is transferred to the salary, the taxes are removed as nekupirovanny artisans. Salaries of clergymen are significantly reduced. Adjusted for 1961 (10:1) on average, the rector of the Church received 200 rubles., given the fact that from the money he had to pay taxes on the amount of 70 rubles on hand out 130 RUB a bit Significantly and the diocesan Treasury. Thus, according to the Ombudsman for the Chelyabinsk region Vladimir Salov in two years, the income of the local diocese has decreased by about 20%.

later, However, the salaries of the clergy again began to grow. By 1965, a soldier of the Soviet priest received 600 rubles, deacon – 400 RUB., the Sexton – 300 rubles., and the Abbot of the temple – 800 RUB But donations, according to the new regulation, already could not go into the pocket of the priest, they went to Church cash, and then in the form of taxes went to the state budget.

a New system of taxation really hit the pockets of the clergy, but their income is still allowed to rely on a comfortable existence. The salary of the priest of the Holy Trinity Cathedral of the Alexander Nevsky Lavra in the 70-ies was 550 rubles., after the payment of taxes on life he had like 300-350 rubles, for the Soviet people it was a very good amount.

Khrushchev’s system of removing taxes from the clergy was abolished in 1980, which allowed to significantly increase the incomes of the priests. In modern Russia against the clergy preferential tax system, but in spite of this, some of them with nostalgia the Soviet times. For example, the famous Church missionary hieromonk Macarius (Markish) notes that in the USSR, even with the pressure of the authorities on religion in material terms, the Church was richer. In his words, donations brought a lot, but spending it was almost everything.

Taras Repin

© Russian Seven

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