Two priests, father Sergii and father Mikhail of an Orthodox church located at the Baikonur cosmodrome have both been awarded a title of “Honorary space-system testers”, informs RIA “Novosti” with a reference to Kazakh media. Both of them will receive special certificates of the Cosmonautics Federation of Russia.
The priests have been consecrating space rockets and sputniks since 1998. Not a single one of the consecrated pieces of machinery has been in real danger since 1998. Two “Protons” that crashed in 1999, had not been consecrated. Back then, a customer did not wish to consecrate the rockets.
Today, almost all rockets at the cosmodrome as well as all launching pads are consecrated. This has become a tradition.
Recently, all crew members also undergo the ceremony at the local church of St. George the Victor.