Across Pacific & Asia

Seen As An Important Development For Religion in Russia
By Hannu Haukka

MOSCOW, RUSSIA (September 11, 1999) -- History was written on August
23rd, 1999 when a first ever Christian academy of broadcasting was
dedicated for serving the cause of Christian broadcasting in Russia and
the CIS states.

In a nation where Christian broadcasting never existed before 1999, the
newly opened school is seen as a very important development for religion
in Russia.

Twenty seven students from all parts of the former Soviet Union came to
Sherbinky a southern suburb of Moscow for 15 weeks of training to be
given by a group of Christians some of the best broadcasting
professionals available. The School will ultimately offer two courses
per year =AD a fall and spring course.

Out of approximately 100 students seeking entry to the school, only 27
were chosen. The student body was handpicked by the year old Association
of Christian Broadcasters of Russia and the CIS.

The student body consisted of representatives from Azerbaijan,
Kazakhstan, Belarus, the Ukraine, the Russian Far East, Central Siberia,
the Ural Mountains, North and Central Russia. The students come from
three major confessions: Baptists, Pentecostals, Russian Orthodox.

The teaching staff is being drawn from six nations: Canada, the United
States, Romania, Ukraine (CBN), Russia, Finland.  IRR/TV, the founder of
the Russian School of Broadcasting, is working closely with the Geoffrey
R. Conway School of Broadcasting and Communications in Burlington,
Canada. The curriculum for the first course has been drawn up by the
Canadian School.

The curriculum consists of communications theory, engineering, on air
techniques, script writing, video switching, audio, lighting, camera
work, directing, follow-up (interaction between the broadcaster and the
church). Each graduating student will be presented with a diploma by the
Conway School of Broadcasting.

At the dedication ceremony Superintendent of Christians of the
Evangelical Faith, Vladimir Murza, exclaimed "What we see today is a
miracle. What we could only pray for and what we dared only dream about
has come to pass. With tears of joy, today I thank God I have seen this

Ivan Fedotov, chairman of another major denomination reflected: "I have
spent 18 years in the hard labor prison camps of Russia. The authorities
made anti Christianity "hate films" that were broadcast on Soviet TV. I
was used as a case study. Television blasted the Church and our
Christian faith in Russia for decades. Today television is being used
for saving souls.  I declare that our brothers and sisters never
suffered labor camps and prison cells in vain". Fedotov was among the
leaders performing the dedication of the Christian School of
Broadcasting in Russia.
For more information on the School of Broadcasting and the Association
of Christian broadcasters contact Association  chairman Hannu Haukka by
e-mail at <>. Fax at 358-9-230 22 55. Website:

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