Felix Shedkovsky, March 19, 2010.
Amidst aggressive attacks in printed and electronic media, charges of fraud were filed against priests of St. Elizabeth's Orthodox parish, under the jurisdiction of Russian Orthodox Autonomous Church (ROAC).
In the center of the scandal which the church of St. Elizabeth found itself in, stands ROAC Bishop of Petrograd and Gdov Gregory (Lourie). Nearly eight identical reports appeared on March 16 and 17 on five Russian television channels. These reports were discussed in great detail on Portal-Credo.ru - a website that on April 1st loses its funding, because of the pressure on its supporters (some of whom are members of ROAC) from the side of the Moscow Patriarchate. These reports were followed by two more on March 17. Federal channel NTV made its report at prime-time, at 19:10, during the news show "Today" (repeated at 23:21). Another, "Channel 5", which also recently had become federal, aired a report at 19:19, titled "Gang of mummers". NTV journalist Ilya Fedosov made his report from the street next to the St. Elizabeth's Hospital morgue chapel, where a search was actually done by the police, but did not enter the chapel, nor the nearby church of St. Elizabeth, actually using the police footage, and only revealing this with the words "police footage" written briefly on the screen, at the very end of the report. (...)