Photos of the Largest Orthodox Church in Western Europe

Photos of the Largest Orthodox Church in Western Europe


Yesterday on the OCN Facebook page, one of my colleagues posted a couple of photos of the Uspenski Cathedral in Helsinki, Finland.

The response from our 200,000 followers was quick and enthusiastic: many were amazed at its beauty.

In this post, I’ll provide a little background on the cathedral and share six photos for your enjoyment.

The Uspenski Cathedral, often said to be the largest Orthodox Church in Western Europe, is dedicated to the Dormition of the Mother of God and is the main cathedral of the Finnish Orthodox Church.

Built upon a hillside on a peninsula overlooking the beautiful capital city of Helsinki, the cathedral occupies a commanding place in the city’s sky-scape.

Dating to the mid 19th century, its bricks were transported to Finland from a fortress that had been destroyed during the Crimean War of 1854. The cathedral’s towering main dome is surrounded by 12 smaller ones, bringing the total number of golden “onion domes” to 13, representing Christ in the middle with his 12 apostles gathered around him.

1. The Cathedral in the late 19th Century
uspenski cathedral in helsinki

2. The Cathedral Today
uspenski cathedral in helsinki

3. The Interior Dome
uspenski cathedral in helsinki

4. The Iconostasis

5. In the Winter
uspenski cathedral in helsinki

6. From the Water
uspenski cathedral in helsinki
It’s truly a beautiful Orthodox church. Let us know if you’ve visited and what it’s like in person!

Photo credits: The photograph of the cathedral in winter is courtesy of Lassi Kurkijärvi on Flickr; and the shot from the water is from the talented Yen Baet, all used with permission.

Posted by the Orthodox Christian Network.  You can find the Orthodox Christian Network on Google+.

About author

Seraphim Danckaert

Seraphim Danckaert is Director of Mission Advancement at St. Tikhon's Orthodox Theological Seminary. He holds an M.Div. from Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology and is a Ph.D. candidate in theology at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam.