The Russian Church found itself in a bit of trouble last April when one of its employees Photoshopped out a $30,000 Breguet from a picture of Kirill I of Moscow, the Patriarch of Russia. Unfortunately, the employee forgot to photoshop the watch’s reflection, and people everywhere noticed.
Image from Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL)
The deed garnered an infamous Silver Shoe Award (akin to the U.S. Razzie Awards) for “Immaculate Disappearance of a Watch” in the category “Miracles Up to the Elbows.” Kirill did not take the backhanded award very well, and refused to accept the Shoe. A spokesman for the Bishop stated he would not respond to “such buffoonery” and ironically called the award ceremony “a joke.”
The watch is a Breguet Reveil du Tsar (ref. 5707ba/12/9v6).
Kirill is no stranger to public controversy. Despite having worn the watch for several years, Kirill initially told a reporter that his watch was not part of his wardrobe. After enormous public scrutiny, Kirill issued an apology for the doctored image. Kirill took the opportunity to state that those responsible for doctoring the photo, primarily a 24-year old female, “would be punished severely.”
Ouch. It’s been several months, but no further word on what the severe punishment entailed. This is the second recent scandal with influential Russians’ expensive watch collections. Vladimir Putin was under the gun earlier this year for amassing a watch collection worth six times his entire salary.