Biography of Father Paul Chaleil

Born in 1913 in Marseilles, France. Graduated from the Russicum in Rome and was ordained a priest of the Eastern Rite in 1933. From 1939 he served at the Eastern Mission in Harbin and remained there during the Japanese occupation and after it was taken by Chinese forces. December 22, 1948 – arrested by Chinese authorities along with a group of priests and handed over to representatives of the USSR Ministry of State Security. Transported to Chita Prison for further investigation. May 10, 1949 – sentenced to ten years in corrective labor camp [Special Board, Ministry of State Security]. Sent to Tayshetlag; granted an early release in 1956. Returned to France. In 1955 he founded a Russian-French cultural association for Russian-speaking French students in Paris, “Aux Deux Ours” [“Two Bears” – which continued in existence until 2007]. He was well known among young people as a translator and propagandist of Russian culture. Died of gangrene of the leg in Paris on September 22, 1983. Translator’s Note: Additional information may be available from a conference on Fr. Paul Chaleil and Aux Deux Ours that was held in Paris in April 2013. Sources: Osipova (1996), p. 211; Peshkova, pp. 4-5; List compiled by R. Dzwonkowski, SAC
Variant Names:
Chaleil, Paul; Shaleĭ, Pavel
Marseille (France); Rome (Italy); Harbin (China); Paris (France)
male; clergy and religious; survived