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Church of the Savior

Church of the Savior

Nowadays:

Church of the Savior

Since the 17th century this place was occupied by a wooden Church of Annunciation of the Mother of God. Nevertheless, during the sacred procession after the Pugachev's rebellion when they were carrying the wonderworking icon of the Holy Savior's image from Yelabuga to Ufa, the following happened: the wonderworking icon "immediately stopped", and the prayers could not move it until they swore to erect the Church of the Savior at the same spot. After that the icon moved forward. The summertime...
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  • How to visit?
      Address:
      37a Oktyabrskaya Revolyutsiya Street
      Phone:
      +7 (347) 272-93-29
      Business hours:
      Mon-Sun 9.00a.m.-6.00p.m.
      Public Transport Stop:
      Uchilishche iskusstv
  • History

      Since the 17th century this place was occupied by a wooden Church of Annunciation of the Mother of God. Nevertheless, during the sacred procession after the Pugachev's rebellion when they were carrying the wonderworking icon of the Holy Savior's image from Yelabuga to Ufa, the following happened: the wonderworking icon "immediately stopped", and the prayers could not move it until they swore to erect the Church of the Savior at the same spot. After that the icon moved forward. The summertime Church of the Savior was built in 1779 as a companion to the winter Church of Annunciation.

      During the great Ufa fire of July 1, 1821 both of the wooden churches burnt down. Through the care of priest Ivan Nesmelov and pious parishioners on May 30, 1824 the foundation stone of the new church was laid. Apart from the major Savior's altar stone, it had two side stones: in honor of Saint Nicholas and the Nativity of Christ.

      The Church of the Savior was constructed in the image and likeness of the Kazan Cathedral in Saint-Petersburg (the latter was designed by Peter I to resemble the St. Peter's Basilica in Rome). The Ufa church, like the one of Saint-Petersburg, was built in the style of Classicism, but the unknown architect did not try to precisely copy architect Voronikhin's work. On the whole the only resemblance consisted in the availability of arc-shaped colonnade and untraditional for Orthodox churches position of the altar. In the Church of the Savior it faced a north-eastern direction. At the end of the two arced colonnades they built two symmetric bell towers: the first one was used as a chapel, the second one as a watch box.

      For lack of funds it took 21 year to finish the construction, since the only source of funding was the parishioners themselves. It is amazing how picturesquely the Church ended the southern part of Spasskaya Street, where it was located. The Church, together with the Resurrection Cathedral and Alexander's Church, became one of the city-forming architectural dominants of Ufa. It was the only church with two bell towers in the city and the second one in the district.

      The inner walls of the temple were covered with murals. The dome painting featured the images of 12 Apostles between the windows. Three-tiered gilt iconostasis was richly decorated with carving and columns. Among the most precious ones was the richly decorated Theotokos of Tikhvin. Seven bells of the church were made by Bakulev Brothers in Vyatskaya Governorate.

      This church was the major one in the city, but it had the largest parish: almost the whole center of the city up to the western border. It is this temple, where Mikhail Nesterov, a famous painter, was Christianized in May 1862.

      The temple was closed at the end of 1929. Soon the double colonnade and both bell towers were demolished. The church served as a dormitory, the murals were painted over and whitened. In 1941 the major dome and drum were demolished. Inside of the building they constructed intermediate floors and partition walls which split the church into a number of rooms. For 40 years the church was used for cinema purposes.

      In 1990s under the guise of a restoration workshop of the Bashkortostan Republic Ministry of Culture the church was used by the windows and doors manufacturing company. It installed woodworking machines and power-saw benches. The meter-thick walls started cracking.

      Upon numerous requests of the archbishop and church members the building was given back to the Russian Orthodox Church. In 1995-2002 the small premises of the second floor were occupied by the eparchial icon painting workshop. Icon painters removed paint and whitening on three spots of fresco painting on large area (approximately 10 square meters). The condition of the 65 years old painting is amazing! The high quality painting and characteristic technique allow referring them to the academic painting. In other places the church murals survived under the layer of paint.

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