RICHMOND, Texas, March 26, 2004 ( – A Texan man has confessed to killing his 19-year-old girlfriend after seeing Mel Gibson’s the Passion of the Christ. The man, who carefully planned the murder to make it appear a suicide, reportedly repented of the slaying and confessed to police. The woman’s body was found by her mother in January. The medical examiner later ruled her death a suicide. The man is alleged to have killed the woman because he didn’t want the burden of caring for their child he thought she was carrying. Seeking redemption, he turned himself in to police March 7th after viewing the movie.  The Passion of the Christ surpassed $300 million in domestic box office sales this week, not including more than $32 million grossed so far internationally.  Meanwhile in Russia, Russian Orthodox Church leaders are predicting that the Passion will bring many viewers closer to God. The Passion opened in theatres in Moscow Thursday.

“For those who know little about Christ, but want to know more, for those who are not used to going to church on a regular basis, this film may really become a revelation and help them become closer to God,” Bishop Yegoryevsk Mark, deputy head of the external liaison department of the Moscow Patriarchate, told the Interfax news source on Thursday.

“Its purpose is to break the atrophy of human insensitivity and to get through to people’s hearts,” Bishop Mark said.

Read the Special Report “The Passion of the Christ – Numerous Positive Stories Counter Harsh Critics” at:


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