June 01, 1999

Safe Haven: A Moscow Church Reclaims its Mission



It is a frosty, dark and cold Saturday evening in late fall. Inside Moscow’s Church of St. Dmitry, parishioners are commemorating the eighth anniversary of the church’s reconsecration by Patriarch Aleksei in 1990. They are also dedicating a new icon, Mother of God Enthroned. There is pomp and ceremony; the glow of evening candlelight is as welcoming as the incense is intoxicating.

Yet St. Dmitry’s lustrous appearance is deceptive. Neglected for seven decades, the church has only recently smelled of incense and candle wax. It has only recently begun to reclaim its important history, while continuing an important humanitarian mission.

The Sisterhood


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