Russian Church

Schick was involved in the forming of a Russian presence in Jerusalem from about 1850.

The Russian Orthodox Church, the biggest orthodox church, increased its presence in Jerusalem 1847 under the name of the Russian Orthodox Ecclesiastical Mission in Jerusalem under the leadership of Archimandrite Porphyrius Uspensky. They were not recognized by the Ottoman Turkish government who at that time ruled Palestine.

The Russians first started with archaeological research and prepared organized pilgrimages from Russia to the Holy Land. After the outbreak of the Crimean War, between the Ottoman Empire and Russia, the Russians had to return back home.

As the war was over the Mission returned in 1857, this time inspired by the tsar Alexander II and with the official recognition of the Ottoman Turkish government. The Mission resumed its previous work of organizing pilgrimages from Russia to Palestine and also began sponsoring charitable and educational work amongst the Orthodox Christian Arabs then in majority of the membership of the Orthodox Church of Jerusalem.

This new Mission was led by Bishop Cyril of Melitopol and arrived in Jerusalem in 1858. Later the Mission transferred its headquarters from the Holy Archangels’ Monastery to its own property, now known as Jerusalem’s Compound or the Russian Compound.

As the Russian presence grew they acquired multiple properties in an effort to preserve Orthodox Christian holy places and care for the needs of the many pilgrims flocking to the region. Among other properties bought by the Russian Church was the Oak of Mamre in Hebron, land on the Mount of Olives, and the tomb of St. Tabitha in Jaffa.

From 1882 the Mission was assisted in its work by the Imperial Orthodox Palestine Society.

Schick assisted the Russians in a special way with there archaeological excavations next to the Holy Sepulchre.

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One Response to “Russian Church”

  1. Russian Church ā€” Friends of Conrad Schick | Sideswiped Says:

    […] via Russian Church ā€” Friends of Conrad Schick […]

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