Svetlana Frolova, imprisoned for fraud more than a decade ago, has convinced followers of her bizarre cult that Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin is a figure worthy of worship -- literally.
Frolova, who now calls herself "Mother Frolova," believes in reincarnation and insists that Putin, in a past life, was the founder of the Russian Orthodox Church. According to Reuters:
She says God spoke to her and revealed Putin's past lives included that of Grand Prince Vladimir of Rus, credited with founding the Russian Orthodox Church more than a millennia ago.
"Every one of us has many incarnations. Saint Paul was indeed one of Putin's," she told Reuters, her high-pitched voice bouncing off the icon-hung walls of her sanctuary in Bolshaya Yelnya, a village near the city of Nizhny Novgorod, some 410 km (255 miles) east of Moscow.
Putin's camp claims that it doesn't approve of Frolova's disturbing admiration. In her compound, women wear nuns' dress, people garden...there are even children present! The cult leader believes that Putin has the "soul of a tsar" and that God has already decided his place at the helm of Russia's government:
Russia's future has already been decided: "Do you remember how Putin became president? Yeltsin gave his post up to him. God willing, Medvedev will do the same," she said. "Everything has been decided by God."
This story certainly speaks for itself. Truly far-out.