Sacrilege in the Prison Orthodox Chapel

June 18, 2015. The website informed about the violations of the orthodox prisoners’ rights at correctional colony no. 3 in Kabardino-Balkaria (Russian Federation). The administration of the prison prevents the orthodox priest from visiting the facility.  The monk priest Igor (Vasiliyev) is supervising the prisoners of the colony for more than 10 years now. For his activity he was even awarded with a medal of the Russian Federal Penitentiary Service three years ago.

However, according to father Igor, last year he was not allowed to visit prisoners for Easter. Moreover, he was charged with an offence for the attempted bringing of alcohol in the prison (wine which was supposed to be used at the liturgy). The kulichi (traditional Easter breads) which he brought with him were all destroyed by the staff of the prison. He was not allowed to enter the prison for Epiphany and for the Bright Week either.

In spite of the assurances of the State officials not to allow such situations in the future, the reality looked otherwise: as stated by father Igor, the altar of the prison chapel was searched without warning by the staff of the colony, so that the altar cloth, the cloth of the prothesis as well as the sacred vessels had been desecrated. Father Igor also reported about a disappearance of the hard disc drive, which contained collection of the religious books, films and preachings.

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