Religion: Historic Sermon

Sermon Soft-sell televangelism hits the Soviet Union

Even in the unpredictable Soviet Union, television viewers must be astonished by a new program on one of the two state-run channels. Last week, in a Sunday time slot following the evening news, Metropolitan Pitirim, head of the publishing department of the Russian Orthodox Church, appeared on the screen garbed in clerical robes and holding prayer beads. For ten minutes, Pitirim spoke soothingly about the need to set aside daily troubles in order to help others and contemplate the meaning of life. The priest also worked in discreet mentions of Jesus Christ and the Bible.

Metropolitan Pitirim was appearing on a...

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