Patriarch consecrates rebuilt church of St Seraphim of Sarov

Alexis II, Patriarch of Moscow and all Russia, consecrated, Wednesday, the rebuilt monastic church of St Seraphim at the town of Sarov near Nizhny Novgorod, Volga area. The consecration was a central event of the festivities devoted to the 100th anniversary of the canonisation of Seraphim, one of the most revered saints of the Russian Orthodox Church.

His Holiness Patriarch Paul of Serbia, Archbishop Christodoulos of the Greek Orthodox Church, and Metropolitan Herman of the Orthodox Church of the United States were attending the ceremony.

"By restoring the church we restore the continuity of the Russian spirit, the continuity of Russian history, which was tragically broken in the 20th century," His Holiness Alexis II said at the ceremony.

The church was erected on the place of the 18-century reclusory of Seraphim of Sarov, who was revered as a miracle maker. Emperor Nicholas II, the last of the Russian tsarist dynasty, visited the church in 1903.

In the Soviet time, the church's murals were destroyed, while the church housed a drama theatre.

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