An example of Soviet propaganda. Historian Sergei Firsov linked the appearance of this book with Joseph Stalin's negotiations with the United States and Great Britain about the possibility of opening a Second Front. Franklin Roosevelt was interested in the state of the "religious question in Russia". In this regard, the NKVD prepared a plan for the book, and Lavrenty Beria presented it to the Politburo of the Central Committee of the All-Union Communist Party of Bolsheviks, which on the same day decided: "Instruct the USSR NKVD to take the necessary measures to ensure that the Moscow Patriarchate publishes the book-album Pravda on religion in the USSR in accordance with the plan presented". The purpose of the publication was to soften international public opinion about the cruel persecution of the church in the Soviet Union, and therefore was mainly intended for the allied countries.
By the start of the war, the Russian Orthodox Church was destroyed — all monasteries were closed, the temples, many cemeteries were destroyed. According to the People's Commissar Yezhov, in the period from August to November 1937, 31 359 "churchmen and sectarians" were arrested, of which 166 were metropolitans and bishops, 9 116 were priests, 2 173 were monks, and 19 904 were "church-sectarian kulak activists".
13 671 people were sentenced to death, of which bishops — 81, priests — 4 629, monks — 934, "church-sectarian kulak activists" — 7 004 people. According to historian Dmitry Pospelovsky, over the decade (1931-1941) in Orthodoxy "was liquidated or from 80 to 85% of priests were arrested, that is, more than 45 thousand".
Golden letters on the cover and the spine. Embossing on the spine. Ribbon bookmark. Black and white photos of Russian Orthodox priests, Orthodox churches, documents of Russian Orthodox Church. Drop caps. Red and white ornament at the beginning of chapters.