Witnessing On The Volga

It was supposed to be the largest evangelistic event ever organized in Russia involving both Orthodox and Protestant churches. However, the Russian Orthodox Church refused to endorse the effort, known as “Mission Volga ’92.” Nevertheless, church leaders said individuals were free to participate in the event.

The campaign, which was organized by Germany-based Mission Europe, began when a group of 250 Christians embarked on August 23 on a 12-city cruise aboard the Alexander Radishev on the Volga River. At each stop they assisted local churches in large evangelistic outreaches.

Jim Bramlett, a spokesperson for Campus Crusade for Christ, which coordinated the American participation, said he had been told that the governing body of the Russian Orthodox Church had taken its compromise stand “due to some internal disagreements.”

Markell Vetrov of St. Petersburg, who has been leading the Orthodox Church in Mission Volga, criticized the participants for the dispute, saying, “We must seek common points with each other.”

Leonid Kishkovsky, ecumenical officer for the Orthodox Church in America, said Orthodox leaders view negatively missionary efforts by outside groups, “even when they see evidence that these efforts are not hostile.” At the same time, he said, they neither want to be viewed as criticizing the Protestant church or the mission project, nor as jeopardizing Russian Orthodox involvement in the ecumenical movement.

Unkosher Ads

Evolution is not kosher in Israel, officials of Pepsi Cola discovered earlier this year. The soft-drink company, which had previously observed the Arab embargo, launched its product into the Israeli market with an advertising campaign showing an ape evolving into a modern ...

Subscriber access only You have reached the end of this Article Preview

To continue reading, subscribe now. Subscribers have full digital access.

Have something to add about this? See something we missed? Share your feedback here.

Our digital archives are a work in progress. Let us know if corrections need to be made.