Russian Patriarch commemorates baptism of Russia in Ukraine
Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia has led a religious service in Kiev, where more than a thousand years ago scores of Russians turned to Orthodox Christianity.
Modern Kiev is the place where the Christianity started in this part of the world. Back in 988, when this land was called Kievan Rus, Prince Vladimir took the first bunch of pagans into the Dnepr River in Ukraine and baptized them to become the Orthodox Christians. The whole Christianization process took several centuries, but Kiev is still considered to be the cradle of Orthodox Christianity in this part of Europe.
“Prince Vladimir sent his ambassadors to search for a religion that would unite the peoples of Rus. When they came back, they reported that they did not know if they were in Heaven or on Earth. The liturgical glory of Orthodoxy convinced them that this religion would be most suitable for peoples of Rus, knowing their character and their temperament,” archimandrite Zacchaeus, representative of the Orthodox Church in America, told RT.an official Russian holiday, although not a public holiday, so today, millions of worshippers on both sides of the Russian-Ukrainian border jointly celebrate the spiritual anniversary.
In Moscow, celebrations have been taking place at Red Square and Pushkin Square.