Russian Baptist pastor convicted for “illegal missionary work”
A court accused the First Church of Evangelical Christian Baptists of Bryansk of “introducing 'modern' ways of communicating according to 'Western standards'".
News Bryansk, CNE.news · 24 APRIL 2023 · 19:00 CET
The court stated that last January, Mikhail Lipsky, along with another pastor of that church, conducted a worship service in the auditorium of the Gorky municipal culture center, “under the guise of a cultural concert, when non-religious people were present”,
The prosecutor's office pointed out that there were also speeches and distribution of religious literature, because the plan was to attract them to join their faith, reported News Bryansk.
According to the court, those actions were “an implementation of missionary activity with violation of the legislation on freedom of conscience, freedom of religion and religious associations".
It also accused the pastors of “holding calls to attend Pentecostal religious meetings, through which they introduce 'modern' ways of communicating according to 'Western standards'”.
Violation of anti-terrorist security requirements
Furthermore, News Bryansk informed that the activities of the First Church of Evangelical Christian Baptists were in violation of the anti-terrorist security requirements, for which the congregation received a recommendation to eliminate the infractions.
The Regional Association of Evangelical Christian Churches of Bryansk had previously received alarming reports from members to the editorial office of the Bryansk News, saying that its senior pastor, Nikolai Konyakhin, was conducting anti-Russian propaganda in a Pentecostal church.