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<<  -- 3 --  Howard Smith    STOLEN PROPERTY

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As the orchestra functioned for the most part on a charitable basis, it made next to no profit. So the Anglican Church offered the orchestra two rooms; and in return the musicians played at services and charity concerts, raising funds for the renovation of St Andrew's historic building.

Everything went well until another organization appeared in the church's basement. The presence of ROOF (Russian Orphanage Opportunity Fund)'s office and the orchestra rehearsal rooms was acceptable on charitable grounds, but editorial offices of the journal Oil and Gas, a Eurasia monthly published by Eurasia Press Inc, USA could not be justified in any way.

An impressive list of advertisers, amongst which are the biggest oil companies, speaks for itself. It is difficult, however, to understand what this specialized bi-lingual publication has to do with the Anglican Church. When the Moscow press sought an explanation from the monthly's Chief Editor, Pat Davis Szymcsak, their Russian journalist received an irate, ill-mannered reception and was advised to see her lawyer.

Lygia O'Riordan, artistic director of Ensemble XXI Moscow, with Gennadi Rozhdestvensky. Photo courtesy of EXXIM
Lygia O'Riordan, artistic director of Ensemble XXI Moscow, with Gennadi Rozhdestvensky. Photo courtesy of EXXIM

The hapless journalist had asked Ms Szymcsak to whom she pays money for the rent of her offices, as well as her taxes. Later it was discovered that the proprietor, the State Property Commission, has no dealings with Eurasian Press Inc.

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Copyright © 21 August 2005 Howard Smith, Masterton, New Zealand

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