Metropolitan Cathedral of Saint Equal to the Apostles Mary Magdalene – alley of “Solidarity” 52

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In the second half of the nineteenth century, the intensive development of Warsaw’s Praga took place, along with the general development of the importance of Warsaw as the main urban center in the country. Russians and residents of the eastern part of the Russian partition were among those arriving and settling in this region. Orthodox believers constituted a dozen or so percent of all inhabitants of Prague, and these people used the churches located on the left bank of the Vistula. Therefore, many times the bishop of Warsaw was asked to build a new temple. In November 1865. it was approved by the governor and two years later the bishop announced the construction works. The strategic nature of the construction and a great communication point (opposite the Vilnius Railway Station) of the church made the architect of the Holy Synod, Nikolai Syczew, presented the finished project and cost estimate. Several significant changes were made to make the church look like the temples of Kiev. After changes to the design, the building had an area of ​​776 square meters and was prepared for the simultaneous participation of 800-1000 people in the service.


The cornerstone for the construction of the church was laid on June 14, 1867.The building was finished in an unfinished state at the end of 1868, and interior design was completed within the next six months.The church was the first architecturally independent Orthodox church in Warsaw.Only Russian artists worked on the construction of the church.

The building was built on a Greek cross plan and has five onion-shaped domes with Orthodox crosses placed on octagonal drums. The main entrance to the church was located from the west and closed with a semicircular portico with double half-columns placed on pedestals. Above the portico, there is a bifurcated window with a decorative border. On the eastern side, the church has an apse with a row of semicircular windows. In its niche there is an image of the patron of the church. Until the end of the 19th century, work continued on the further decoration of the interior of the temple. The ensemble of 27 frescoes was made by Sergei Winogradov: he painted images of, among others, Theotokos, Moses, David and Saints Basil the Great, John Chrysostom. In the altar room there is a fresco by Vasilyev The Last Supper and the figure of God the Father. The distribution of the images of saints was to reflect their importance in the history of salvation. The figures of saints associated with the history of Russia and Russia were to remind about the status of Orthodoxy as the state religion.

In 1892, a side iconostasis in front of the altar of St.Jow Poczajowski.It is double-breasted and contains images of Christ, the Mother of God and the Archangel Gabriel.The tsarist gates contain the same icons.According to information from the Orthodox press of the end of the 19th century published in Warsaw, this iconostasis was originally located in the church of St.Tatiana of Rome.The second altar was placed in 1926.Czestochowa Icon of the Mother of God.This altar is a votive offering for the survival of the Orthodox church’s restoration action.In addition, there were two tiled stoves in the church.The original plans assumed the installation of modern gas lighting, unprecedented in churches, but Archbishop Joanicjusz protested, demanding the traditional use of wax candles.

The present appearance of the Passion Chapel (lower chapel) was created in the second half of the 1990s.Inside, mosaics from the cathedral of St.Alexander Nevsky, which in 1985.the parish obtained from the National Museum in Warsaw.Golgotha was located in the rear part of the chapel..The main icon of the lower chapel is a variant of the Iverska Icon of the Mother of God, a gift from the monks of Athos.

Since 1921, the church has the status of a metropolitan council.After the recovery of the Orthodox churches in the Second Polish Republic, it became one of the two free-standing Orthodox churches in Warsaw.It is the main church of the Polish Autocephalous Orthodox Church.

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Cerkiew metropolitalna, Aleja "Solidarności" 52

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