Staunton, Nov. 14 – Metropolitan Illarion, head of the Patriarchate’s department for external relations, says he is certain that “sooner or later” the authorities will take Lenin’s embalmed body out of the mausoleum and bury it; but because attitudes concerning such a step follow ideological rather than generation lines, it is very difficult to say when this will happen.
Many Russians have assumed that support for burying Lenin will inevitably increase as the older generation passes from the scene and the younger one without a Soviet background comes to the fore, but that is not necessarily the case (newizv.ru/news/society/14-11-2021/mitropolit-illarion-uveren-telo-lenina-vynesut-iz-mavzoleya-na-kladbische).
On the one hand, “among the older generation are many people who neither in Sviet times approved” keeping Lenin in the mausoleum not approve his being kept there now. And on the other, the senior churchman says, “among the youth are also those who are indifferent to this issue” and people who come down on both sides of it.
The metropolitan says that the powers that be intervened to cancel a discussion about using the mausoleum in new ways right before the Duma elections in September lest they stir up a hornets’ nest. But now that the elections are behind them, those in the Kremlin may finally decide that they can take action without creating problems for themselves.