Russian President Vladimir Putin has said in the Saida Medvedeva film “Patriarch” on the “Russia 1” channel that Patriarch Kirill’s father baptized him in Leningrad in 1952.
The Russian leader spoke about how at the end of 1952 his fatther, a member of the Communist Party, had him secretly baptized in Transfiguration Cathedral.
According to Vladimir Putin, the priest suggested that his mother name him Michael in honor of the priest’s own patron saint, but the mother of the Russian leader refused and named him Vladimir in honor of his father.
Later, speaking with the patriarch, Putin asked how he came to the Church. Kirill answered that his father was a priest and worked in Leningrad in Transfiguration Cathedral.
Putin asked the patriarch to clarifiy whether his father was the only Michael serving there in 1952. Receiving an affirmative answer, he told the patriarch about how it was his father who baptized him in childhood.