March 14, 2012
The Huffington Post
The Russian military is taking the phrase "getting by on a wing and a prayer" to new heights after creating a flying church, complete with paratrooper priests.
The unique high-tech air-dropped church consists of a usual army tent and a life-sustaining module including a diesel power source, air conditioner and fridge, and is put on the ground with an airborne platform used to carry armored vehicles and other heavy military equipment, according to the Russian news site RT.com.
Officials say the airborne chapel is needed because the Russian Orthodox Church requires special sacraments that demand a substantial number of utensils such as bells and crucifixes.
But in order for the plan to take flight, Russian military leaders are drafting some chaplains who are experienced paratroopers, according to the Sun.
A parachuting church seems unusual, but it's part of a long line of weird items that have been dropped since the first parachute was created around 1470, Shelterpop reported.
For instance, Hummers were parachuted onto the battlefield during the Iraq War operations and the British have been parachuting dogs since World War II.
No word on when the flying church will launch, but Russian officials reportedly expect them to be ready soon.