Russian Church to hold wide-scale celebrations for 1030th anniversary of Baptism of Rus’

The Holy Synod of the Russian Orthodox Church resolved at its latest session to celebrate the 1030th anniversary of the Baptism of Rus’ on a Church-wide level, in all dioceses, reports RIA-Novosti.

The Baptism of Rus’ refers to the mass Baptism of Kiev residents in 988 when St. Vladimir the Great and Equal-to-the-Apostles adopted Orthodox Christianity as the religion of his land. Though there were some Christians among them before this event, the Baptism is considered the wide-scale introduction of holy Orthodoxy to the Eastern Slavs.

“This important date was a subject for consideration at the meeting of the Holy Synod today,” Vladimir Legoida, the Chairman of the Synodal Department for Church and Society and Media, told journalists yesterday, “and it was decided to hold festive memorial events, conferences, concerts, and exhibitions dedicated to the 1030th anniversary of the Baptism of Rus’ in our metropolitanates and dioceses.”

In accordance with the decision of the Holy Synod, diocesan hierarchs should celebrate the festal Divine Liturgy in their cities on June 28, when the Church celebrates the memory of the Holy Equal-to-the-Apostles Great Prince Vladimir.

Preparations for the celebrations on a Church-wide level will be carried out by an organizing committee formed by the Holy Synod, with Metropolitan Barsanuphius of St. Petersburg and Ladoga as the chairman.

“The celebrations will be of General Church importance and will be held in all the dioceses of the Russian Orthodox Church,” Legoida said.

The 1025th anniversary was celebrated by the heads of Local Orthodox Churches and the heads of delegations of local Orthodox Churches, Patriarch Kirill and members of the Holy Synod, hierarchs and clergy of the Russian Orthodox Church with a festive Divine Liturgy in Moscow’s Christ the Savior Cathedral.

The feast was celebrated last year with a wave of bell ringing in churches and monasteries throughout Russia and abroad, and a procession from the Kremlin to the St. Vladimir monument on Borovitskaya Square, opened in November 2016.