Russian Priest Deemed Too Gucci

Russian Priest Deemed Too Gucci

If posting your Gucci shoe collection is wrong, we don't want to be right.

If posting your Gucci shoe collection is wrong, we don't want to be right.

Text: Stephanie Ge

A Moscow priest sparked controversy last week when he posted a series of photographs featuring Gucci items on his Instagram. Vyacheslav Baskakov is under investigation for his actions by the Russian Orthodox Church’s disciplinary committee who hoped to “return him to his senses.”

Baskakov demonstrated his love of luxury fashion with detailed shots of his Gucci bag and shoe collection, as well as selfies with his Louis Vuitton signature handbag. The Instagram has since been deleted, but the photos of Baskakov's clout-heavy collection are making the rounds following an article by The Moscow Times.

This is not the first time a Russian priest has received backlash a fashion-forward hobby. In 2012, the head of Russia’s Orthodox Church, Patriarch Kirill, incited scandal when photos surfaced of him wearing a $30,000 Breguet watch. “Such an immodest and unrestrained lifestyle should not be characteristic of priests in the church,” Alexander Volkov, a spokesman for Patriarch Kirill, said at the time. “...A clergyman cannot be a priest in the church in the morning and then be whoever he wants after lunchtime.”

Baskakov released his apology on Sunday, saying he had only been following doctor's orders and “fighting for freedom” with his Instagram posts. “I tried to be an open person. I was warned [against it], but I fought for this freedom,” he wrote.

Having violated Russian Orthodox norms of dressing modestly, Baskakov vowed to delete the app from his phone, saying, “I will pay penance and close Instagram, since I do not know how to behave modestly and adequately.” The priest added that he suffers from neuralgia and is currently in the hospital receiving aid, and that a doctor suggested he could offset some of his symptoms with a “change of scenery,” or by wearing different clothes.

photo: Moscow Times
photo: Moscow Times
photo: Moscow Times

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