MOUNT PORTLAND, Ore.
– A group of people who work in a Mormon church were shocked when they were told that their former parishioners were being re-married in Russia.
The wedding, for a Mormon couple, took place in Russia’s Krasnodar region and is one of many in the region where the Mormon church is trying to convert people back to Catholicism.
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has a large Russian community of roughly 1.5 million, and many of the church’s members are Catholic.
But the Russian Orthodox Church has traditionally refused to be part of the Russian government and does not recognize Russia as a sovereign country.
So when the Krasna family moved to the United States in 2015, they did not expect that they would be asked to marry in Russia, said David Jenson, a spokesman for the Russian branch of the Mormon Church.
After they applied for Russian citizenship, they learned they were being asked to attend a ceremony.
But as soon as they left the United State, they were contacted by the church to confirm that they were not permitted to attend.
The Krasnovas have lived in this country for nearly 20 years, and their parents, Andrei and Olga Krasnova, are from Russia.
They had never been to Russia before, but they felt like they were joining a church.
They were surprised when they learned that their family would be being asked for permission to marry a Russian.
“I didn’t think it would be this widespread,” Andrei Krasnikova said.
The couple and their partner decided to come back to the U.S. for a second time after a Russian law that requires people to renounce their citizenship before they can be baptized was lifted in July.
The move is part of a broader Russian push to get Russian citizens back into the Church.
Russia has been accused of violating human rights, including a 2014 law that banned people from holding public office, and the church has been forced to remove many Russian missionaries in the U, and some in Canada.
Church leaders say the decision to allow the Kosnanas to marry was made to ensure that the couple’s children were not affected.
“The family would have been happy to have the opportunity to celebrate in Russia with them, but we would have preferred to celebrate with our parents,” Andreis said.
“We are proud to serve the people of Russia,” said Olga.
Mormon Church officials in the United Stated said they would continue to help with the re-conversion process, but have not said when that might happen.© 2018 Cox Media Group.