As Poland continues to debate allegations of communist-era spying by members of the Catholic Church a new book has added to the controversy. Author Father Tadeusz Isakowicz-Zaleski claims some 30 priests – including four bishops – acted as informants for the secret police in the decades before communism fell in 1989.
He has been spearheading a drive to expose clergy who cooperated with the authorities. He says the Church should acknowledge what took place and apologise to the Polish people.
The cleric scoured police files at the Institute of National Remberence to find what he claims is evidence of spying by fellow priests. He says he himself was a victim of the secret police, having been beaten twice by agents.
The country was rocked in January by the resignation of Archbhishop Stanislaw Wielgus, who admitted spying for Poland’s former communist rulers.
The ongoing scandal has severely undermined the widely held view that the Catholic Church acted as a fierce opponent of the totalitarian regime.