Senior church mystic close to Putin flies over Moscow in business jet to perform a blessing ‘to protect Russian from coronavirus’
- Orthodox elder Iliy Nozdrin flew above Moscow and St Petersburg to bless cities
- He was seen flying alongside another prominent priest with icons and a cross
- The trip in an executive jet was designed to ‘protect Russia from the pandemic’
- He is called Russia’s ‘most important and fashionable elder’, popular with VIPs
An 88-year-old church mystic close to Vladimir Putin has been sent in an executive jet above Moscow and St Petersburg to ‘protect Russia from the pandemic’.
Orthodox elder Iliy Nozdrin was seen alongside another prominent priest with icons and a cross blessing residents to defeat coronavirus.
The elder – who is confessor to Russia’s most senior churchman Patriarch Kirill – prayed to rid the country of the ‘destructive infection’.
A church source said: ‘Iliy today flew over our capital cities with a pray to protect Russia from coronavirus pandemic’.
Orthodox elder Iliy Nozdrin on board business jet (left and right) above Moscow and St Petersburg where he blessed residents to protect them from the coronavirus pandemic
Elder Iliy Nozdrin is a church mystic who is said to be close to Russian President Vladimir Putin
The hunched grey bearded Nozdrin is seen as having sway over Putin and one ex-official told Proyeky investigative journalists he is Russia’s ‘most important and fashionable elder’ who is ‘popular among VIPs’.
Seen as a healer, he has been sought out by many leading officials.
He once ordered a Russian governor to sideline both his wife and mistress, it was reported.
Referring to Putin’s divorce in 2013, he asked the surprised politician: ‘Do you see women close to our president?’
Orthodox Church elder Iliy Nozdrin (right), pictured with Russia’s most senior churchman Patriarch Kirill (left), prayed to rid the country of the ‘destructive infection’
Nozdrin pictured (above) in a business jet as he flew above Moscow and St Petersburg to ‘protect Russia from the pandemic’
A former regional official said that ‘through Iliy, you can convey information to the president in [just] two days’.
Nozdrin has dismissed anti-Kremlin protests as ‘trash’ and ‘enemy acts’ unleashing ‘dark forces from an abyss’, while urging people to pray for Putin.
The elder is a schema-archimandrite, a monastic priest who has attained the highest level of spiritual excellence.
It was unclear who had supplied the business jet.