The main cathedral of the Russian armed forces should not feature depictions of Joseph Stalin, says Vladimir Legoida, the chairman of the Russian Orthodox Church’s Synodal Department for the Cooperation of Church and Society. This statement was reported by Interfax.
“[Stalin’s] name is connected to many troubles in people’s lives, which cannot be erased from history,” Legoida said during a broadcast on the radio station “Vera.”
In his opinion, the “strong reaction [to the possible appearance of a mosaic with Stalin] indicates that this initiative requires a broader discussion,” his quote from Interfax reads.
- The main cathedral of the Russian armed forces, named the Resurrection of Christ Cathedral, is currently under construction in Patriot Park, located outside of Moscow. The fact that the cathedral’s walls could include a depiction of Stalin emerged after MBKh Media published leaked photos of the mosaics at the end of April. The photos also showed unfinished mosaics of President Vladimir Putin, Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu and other high-ranking Russian officials.
- The Russian Orthodox Church initially explained the presence of mosaics featuring Putin and Stalin according to the tradition of depicting historical events — in this case, the 2014 annexation of Crimea and the “Great Patriotic War” (World War II).
- On April 30, Kommersant reported that the cathedral would not have any mosaics of Putin. The Russian Orthodox Church explained that this decision was made taking into account the President’s own opinion. According to an Orthodox Church representatives, there was no need to physically dismantle any mosaics inside the cathedral; the leaked images of the mosaics were photographed in a workshop.