Posted by: becketfund | September 28, 2006

Belarus: Pastor Fined for Performing Public Baptisms

Forum 18 reports that Pentecostal pastor Sergei Poznyakovich of the Salvation Pentecostal Church was fined the equivalent of $2,171 (over 150 times the minimum wage for Belarus) for baptizing 70 people without first obtaining state permission.  The state official for religious affairs said that official permission should have been obtained in advance, as the baptisms were considered “a mass public event”.  The church, with a membership of about 1,500 people, failed to appeal the court’s decision in time and now fears that if the state fines them again within the year, the authorities will have grounds to shut down the church.


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