National Geographic : 2017 Aug
88 national geographic • august 2017 VISSARION’S FOLLOWERS These disciples, all vegetarians, share a communal Christmas lunch in Cheremshanka, one of the community’s five villages. Christmas here falls on January 14— Vissarion’s birthday. Celebrations start on the 12th, with a daylong pil- grimage through all of the villages. On Christ- mas Day thousands of followers gather and as- cend to a mountain altar above Obitel Rassveta, after which Vissarion greets the crowd and delivers a short sermon.