Latvia ceases broadcasting church services over commemoration of ROC head

27 August 12:08
Patriarch Kirill. Photo: Patriarch Kirill. Photo:

Latvian TV condemns Russia's war in Ukraine and does not want to broadcast Orthodox services with the commemoration of Patriarch Kirill.

The Editorial Board of Latvian Television (LTV) has decided to stop recording and showing new Orthodox services because of mentioning Patriarch Kirill, reports

According to LTV representatives, during the recording of an Orthodox service at the Riga branch of the Holy Trinity-St. Sergius Nunnery in Valgunde, it was "revealed that a prayer for Patriarch Kirill of the Russian Orthodox Church was being offered".

"Therefore, a decision has been made to stop broadcasting the particular service and new Orthodox services," LTV said.

LTV Editor-in-Chief Sigita Roķe said, "We categorically condemn Russia's war in Ukraine, so at this time we consider it absolutely unacceptable to continue broadcasting Orthodox services where prayers for Patriarch Kirill can be heard."

Religious services are broadcast under an agreement between LTV and the Ekumēniskais mediju padomes fonds. LTV records and broadcasts religious services of the four largest Christian denominations in Latvia: Lutheran, Catholic, Orthodox and Baptist.

The agreement stipulates that the foundation is responsible for ensuring that the content of the broadcasted services complies with the legal regulations of the Republic of Latvia. LTV received confirmation during a meeting with the foundation following Russia's full-scale invasion of Ukraine on 24 February 2022 that there would be no prayers for Patriarch Kirill in the recorded and broadcast services.

LTV broadcasts services of Latvia's largest Christian denominations every Sunday, as well as ecumenical holiday services on 4 May, 11 and 18 November, Easter and Christmas.

As earlier reported, the Synod of the Russian Orthodox Church condemned the actions of the head of the Latvian Church.


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