Upward of 2,000 psychics, shamans, witches and warlocks are set to descend on Kiev on Thursday in a bid to bring peace to Ukraine through magic, local media reported Tuesday.
The mass ritual will be held on the eve of May 1, a day traditionally associated with witchcraft in Kiev and among many adherents to Paganism internationally.
It will take place on Mikhailovsky Square, bordered by two cathedrals, "the spiritual center and heart of Kiev and all of Ukraine," the event's organizer, shaman Sergei "Sabirius" Grechishkin, said in comments to Ukrainian news site Vesti.
The ritual will be led by "13 masters of the first circle," for whom Grechishkin is prepared to vouch. Аs well as possessing paranormal capabilities, the event's planned participants are "decent people with kind hearts," Grechishkin told Vesti.
"On the square we will collectively appeal to higher powers … to rouse people from this bloody outbreak of anger and hatred and ask to save everyone who has found themselves in this terrible slaughter."
Vesti reported that Kiev officials were unaware of the planned ritual.
Deacon of the St. Mikhail Monastery, Father Ivan, spoke to Vesti about the planned ritual, of which he had previously been unaware. "There's nothing bad about people planning to pray for peace in Ukraine. … [but] people pray for peace in church. … You mustn't forget that apart from God, there is also the devil, who can, via [psychics, shamans, witches and warlocks], create what at first glance looks like good things which then turn out to have been made using dark powers."
A planned group prayer in the St. Sophia Cathedral on the same square turned sour in 1993, Vesti noted. Members of the "White Brotherhood" sect had wanted to take over the cathedral, host a group prayer and then set the cathedral alight. Police intervened and arrested the organizers.