On July 26, hundreds of reporters of Pershy Nezalezhny TV channel joined 350,000 worshippers from all over Ukraine (churchgoers of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church) in the procession towards Volodymyrska Hirka hill in Kyiv. The shooting crews of Pershy Nezalezhny spent three days, showing the procession live without any breaks. The reporters and the faithful Orthodox people covered the distance of hundreds of kilometers for participation in a joint prayer and the cross procession, celebrating the 1033th anniversary of the baptization of Kyiv Rus.
The press office of the Moscow patriarchate (the world's largest autocephalous local Orthodox church) described the marathon "unique", praising the work of the reporters.
On July 27, Pershy Nezalezhny broadcasted the holiday speech of Onufriy, the metropolitan of Kyiv and all Ukraine, the head of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church. It was followed by the broadcast of a holiday mass at Volodymyrska Hirka hill.
During all three days of the TV marathon, the reporters went on air from Ukraine's largest orthodox shrines. Top churchmen of Ukrainian Orthodox Church turned to worshippers, congratulating them and commenting on the most important aspects of life on this occasion.
During the procession, more than 350,000 Orthodox believers from all over Ukraine and foreign worshippers processed from the Monument of Prince Volodymyr the Great to Kyiv Pechersk Lavra. A lot of people enjoyed the opportunity to speak live via Pershy Nezalezhny, addressing all up-to-date challenges; they shared Christian love and greetings and expressed their concern about the coming visit of Constantinople Patriarch Bartholomew I in Kyiv, as the visit is being prepared without the invitation of hierarchs of Ukraine's Orthodox Church.
Reporters of Pershy Nezalezhny TV channel joined the Pulse TV show, along with many famous representatives of Ukraine's civil society. Braodcasts of holiday masses from the shrines of Ukraine's Orthodox Church were conducted all three days of the marathon.
On July 28, the audience of Pershy Nezalezhny TV channel was able to hear the ringing of church bells all over the premises of Russian Orthodox Church; the event was coordinated by Kyivite Volodymyr Rudnytsky who was blessed by Moscow Patriarch Kirill and Kyiv metropolitan Onufriy.
The viewers of the TV channel gained an opportunity to observe the discussion among famous Orthodox cizitens from various countries; they focused on historical truth and the place of contemporary human being in the world that is changing drastically. Viewers and members of the TV marathon spoke about the history of a new tradition being born - the tradition of celebrating the Day of Christianization of Rus (since 2007). The discussions, in particular, involved Isaakiy, the Bishop of Vorzel, and Oleg Karamazov, the head of NGO Day of Baptization of Kyiv Rus'.
Serhy Komarov, the Russian theologian claimed that there's a huge danger coming from the nationalism infiltrating the Holy Church. Then, he and Ukrainian historian Petro Tolochko opened a discussion about the true historical, cultural and sacred meaning of what is called "The Russian World".
Vasyl Anisimov, the reporter and writer, and international observer Yuriy Molchanov focused on the celebration and its meaning in the future.
A call-in show between Kyiv and Moscow took place, with people dicsussing matters of religion in the studios of Pershy Nezalezhny (Kyiv) and Spas TV channels (Moscow).
Antoniy, the Metropolitan of Boryspil and Brovary stated that the international forum "People of Peace", which involves peaceful residents of Donbas, should keep working - just like the dialogue between Ukrainians who reside on both sides of the ongoing armed conflict in Donbas. This forum was initiated by Ukrainian Orthodox Church.
As part of the program at Pershy Nezalehny TV channel, Oleksandr Avdyuhin, the priest of Ukrainian Orthodox Church from Rovenky town (Luhansk region) went for a dialogue with the audience in Kyiv, and the people who are now residing on the both sides of the tragic conflict in Donbas. This TV program, as well as the dialogue with Russian theologian Andrei Tkachev and hierarch of Cyrpiot Orthodox Church Athanasios became the pilot episodes of the international media platform called The History of Civilizations.
The TV marathon included a historical series called "A Tale of Baptization of the Rus' ", based on the chronicle of the St. Dmitriy Rostovsky. The series was created by Star Media holding, led by Vlad Ryashin, the member of the board of NGO Day of Baptization of Kyiv Rus'. Oksana Marchenko's film called "Pilgrim. A Tale of Baptization" was shown, too.
Isaakiy, the Bishop of Vorzel and priest of NGO Day of Baptization of Kyiv Rus' thanked all the believers, reports who joined the holiday procession and its organizers and congratulated all Orthodox Christians on the Day of Baptization of Kyiv Rus'.
Producers of "Day of Day of Baptization of Kyiv Rus. People" TV marathon
President of Novyny media holding Yehor Benkendorf
Chariman of NGO Day of Baptization of Kyiv Rus' Oleg Karamazov