Word leaked out that a number of young Christians from the West intended to stage a Jesus demonstration during May Day celebrations on Red Square in Moscow. So, the police were on hand to welcome the caravan of fifty-one youths and their leaders when they arrived from Finland. First, the Christians were hassled for hours over passports. Next, they were detained at a roadblock in predawn hours. Here they sang and witnessed to authorities. Then their Christian literature was confiscated and they were placed under house arrest at a motel miles from Moscow, and May Day on Red Square passed without their presence.

On the next day the police escorted them back toward the border. The group’s Jesus poster-decorated vans attracted attention all along the route. So did the crosses with the slogan in Russian, “Christ loves you,” that the youths wore. As they neared Kalinin (population 350,000), a number of Soviet Christians came out to meet them. En route to Leningrad on May 3, police noted other posters on the vans: “Stop Persecution of Soviet Christians!” That did it. No more posters. End of visit.

About half the young people were Americans, many of them affiliated with Youth With a Mission. The turnout was a bit disappointing to leaders. When the plans were laid in Denmark last summer, hundreds indicated their desire to participate. Nevertheless, a lot of Soviets got the message. Who knows, maybe Soviet Jesus people will be demonstrating next May Day as a result, says a planner of the operation.

Meanwhile, the executive committee of the Netherlands Reformed Church sent an Easter message to forty-five Soviet evangelicals who were jailed during 1972. At the same time, these church leaders assured the Russian ambassador in The Hague that ...

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