Moscow — It took a while for the white smoke to climb up the chimney. That’s the Roman Catholic metaphor the 66-year-old Alexander Fedichkin, the Russian Evangelical Alliance’s president, used to describe the protracted internal negotiations leading up to his appointment for an additional three-year term. Consequently, the REA’s fifteenth annual conference, held on February 22, 2018, in Moscow’s Lutheran Peter-and-Paul-Cathedral, began late.

Fedichkin, a long-time Baptist Union pastor in Moscow, has served as president since 2013. General-Secretary Sergey Vdovin, a pastor within the “Association of Churches of Evangelical Christians” in Moscow, has held this position since 2011. The initial head of the REA, the Baptist seminary lecturer, Vladimir Ryaguzov (born 1950), suffered a debilitating stroke in 2013 and is now residing with his spouse and children in Seattle/Washington. Ulrich Materne from Wittenberg in Eastern Germany, the German Alliance’s representative to Eastern Europe and a friend of the Russian Alliance, retired in 2016.



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