Georgian Clerics as Guardians of Conspiracy Theories

25 May, 2020

The coronavirus pandemic has paved the way for a number of conspiracy theories and disinformation. Various groups have been spreading conspiracy theories in Georgia, among them the representatives of the Georgian Orthodox Church. Georgian clerics intensified their efforts amid the restrictions imposed during the Easter holidays, promoting conspiracy theories about the coronavirus vaccine. 

The conspiracy theories spread by Georgian Orthodox clerics mainly covered three issues: vaccines, chips and fake treatments.

1. Vaccines

A non-existent COVID-19 vaccine became the main target of Georgian clerics. They spread the following messages about the vaccines:

  • A vaccine will physically annihilate a great part of the population. 
  • A vaccine will be directed against humans. 
  • A vaccine is a satanic plot and it aims at subduing people. 
  • A vaccine aims at reducing birth rate on the earth.

Source Statement

Metropolitan Nikoloz (Pachuashvili) of Akhalkalaki and Kumurdo Eparchy

“If they force all people to undergo a vaccination, if they make people do it, it will be a demonic act”  – 10.05.2020
Archpriest Saba (Chikaidze) of St. Andrew the First-Called Georgian Church in Vake

“A vaccine that will be created to treat it [COVID-19] will kill a great part of the population” – 06.05.2020

Father Shalva (Kekelia), head of Vake Transfiguration Cathedral

“As a cleric, I can say that if this vaccine will prevent me from going to work, traveling abroad, taking my child to school, then I will state openly that this vaccine will be directed against people” - 18.05.2020

Metropolitan Saba (Gigiberia) of Khoni and Samtredia Eparchy “A vaccine will be offered to the mankind and people, which will not manage a virus, but rather subdue people, and it will become one of the important tools in the devil’s hands for ruling over people” - 04.04.2020
Archpriest Davit Isakadze They plan to reduce the birth rate through universal vaccination. They have a goal to leave only 100 million people of elite origin that will have about 1 billion of service personnel” – May 11-17
Bishop Michael (Gabrichidze) of Tianeti and Pshav-Khevsureti Eparchy “The only vaccine against coronavirus is the flesh and blood of Jesus, as well as holy water” - 12.05.2020

  2. Chips

Conspiracy theories about chips allegedly implanted in humans are not new. However, they have intensified amid the coronavirus pandemic. Georgian clerics have promoted spreading these conspiracy theories.

  • Georgia is facing a threat of massive human chipping 
  • Georgian security services prohibit people from talking about chips

Source Statement
Archpriest of the Svetitskhoveli Cathedral, Father Petre (Kvaratskhelia)

“One of Georgian emigrants reported about being chipped, saying that it is very comfortable. The same emigrant called on others to do the same. Will Georgia face a threat of massive human chipping? Personally I would not like to be chipped and controlled by others on a daily basis” - 15.04.2020

Head of Kashueti Saint George Church, Father Zosime (Beridze)

“I asked Father Zosime Beridze for help and he told me that there are people, who are chipped like you, but security service does not allow us to speak out” - 09.04.2020

Head of Digomi Three Bishop Church, Archpriest Guram Gamtsemlidze

“Has it been fabricated by the church that human chipping is already underway in a number of EU states (for example, Sweden)?” - 20.05.2020

  3. Masons, Soros and other anti-Western messages

Orthodox clerics are also spreading other well-known conspiracy theories. The coronavirus and the methods to tackle it were portrayed as the decision made by Masons and globalists. Furthermore, the financial aid provided by western institutions was described as a struggle against the church. 

  • Coronavirus has been imposed artificially. 
  • The state of emergency is a Masonic decision. 
  • Coronavirus was spread deliberately to make currency disappear. 
  • The aid provided by the European Union and the International Monetary Fund actually is a struggle against the church. 
  • Soros and his followers are fighting against the church.

Source Statement
Head of Digomi Three Bishop Church, Archpriest Guram Gamtsemlidze

“I wonder, what is the purpose of these tens and hundreds of millions transferred by the International Monetary Fund or the World Bank to Georgia? Does anyone believe that they care about us?” 20.05.2020

Metropolitan Iobi (Akiashvili) of Ruis-Urbnisi Eparchy

“The International Monetary Fund will assist Georgia with USD 3.5 billion. The EU will also assist the country and it is quite clear what the purpose of this aid is – they are fighting against the church.” 16.04.2020

Metropolitan Ioseb of Shemokmedi Eparchy 

“I think, they spread this virus to make currency disappear and it will happen quite soon.” 29.03.2020

Head of Iveria Holy Virgin Mary Church in Gldani, Father Basil Mkalavishvili 

“We are not afraid of George Soros’ dirty intentions and his chickens nesting here… no matter how hard they try, they will not make our nation, Orthodox Christians kneel down, because we do not live in earthly luxury, but our spirits are clean, rich.” 13.05.2020

Metropolitan Iobi of Mrovi and Urbnisi Eparchy 

“There is no danger. It is an artificially imposed psychosis, a rehearsal how much the people will resist a common Masonic decision called the state of emergency." 15.04.2020


Prepared by Nestan Ratiani
Myth Detector Lab