Russia's Anti-Gay Orthodox Church Fails At Attempt To Hide The Wealth Of Its Leader
Having succeeded in making homosexuality essentially illegal in St. Petersburg and two other regions, the Russian Orthodox Church is now pushing for a national federal ban on any public mention or "promotion" of LGBT-related events and publications. But today the church is being ridiculed nationwide due to a photoshop scandal.
Facing a scandal over photographs of its leader wearing an enormously expensive watch, the Russian Orthodox Church worked a little miracle: It made the offending timepiece disappear. Editors doctored a photograph on the church’s Web site of the leader, Patriarch Kirill I, extending a black sleeve where there once appeared to be a Breguet timepiece worth at least $30,000. The church might have gotten away with the ruse if it had not failed to also erase the watch’s reflection, which appeared in the photo on the highly glossed table where the patriarch was seated. The church apologized for the deception on Thursday and restored the original photo to the site, but not before Patriarch Kirill weighed in, insisting in an interview with a Russian journalist that he had never worn the watch, and that any photos showing him wearing it must have been doctored to put the watch on his wrist.The above-linked New York Times article notes: "Over the past decade, the church has grown immensely powerful, becoming so close to the Kremlin that it often seems like a branch of government."