Open Access

Father Dimitri Dudko and the Intersection of late Cold War Underground, Official, and Diaspora Russian Orthodox Church Opinion


Father Dimitri Dudko’s fame as a popular 1970s Soviet Orthodox priest and his public ‘recantating’ and subsequent disgrace in 1980 shed light on several aspects of religion in the late Cold War. Diasporas like the ROCOR fostered practices and beliefs-especially conservative ones-forced to go underground in the homeland. Soviet atheism responded to revived religious practice worldwide, with Dudko’s persecution being a part of that response. The formal and informal relationships between ROCOR clerics and Dudko, and between Dudko and the KGB, suggest that Dudko’s apparent about-face may have had deeper roots and longer-lasting effects than previously suspected.

English, German
Publication timeframe:
3 times per year
Journal Subjects:
Theology and Religion, General Topics and Biblical Reception