The invasion of Ukraine has become a holy war for Russia. At the outset, some hoped Patriarch Kirill, the head of the Russian Orthodox Church, would call for peace. Instead, he told Russian troops, committing daily atrocities in Ukraine, that God is on their side. Under Putin, religion is being stripped of its spiritual content and used as a weapon of political control. Lucy Ash's research, culminating in a book, focuses on the Russian State’s evolving relationship with religion, and the role of the Orthodox Church in consolidating supremacy after the collapse of the Soviet Union. There is an important canon of books about Putin’s Russia but little for a general readership that specifically focuses on his relationship with the Orthodox Church––for centuries the dominant social institution in the country.