A Russian priest has been filmed violent and repeatedly pushing a screaming and naked baby under water during a baptism.
Ilia Semiletov could be struck off after he was seen three times roughly forcing the two-year-old girl’s head underwater in the font.
The girl screamed in terror but watching adults did not intervene and there was even laughter among those standing nearby.
There were claims the priest had twice struck the girl’s head on the font during the extreme baptism, but these were denied by the church and the girl’s mother.
The priest is to face a church court but the girl’s mother insisted the girl “cried because she was scared of the priest”, and her parents did not register a complaint.
The mother has said she was “grateful” to the priest for baptising her daughter.
A worried woman parishioner Liliya Reznikova said the priest had told her that children – other than newborn babies – must be “broken” during the baptism ritual because “Satan is sitting inside them”.
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