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Residents, Church Vie For History-Rich Russian Isles : NPR

Solovetsky Monastery Uprising in 1666

Image via Wikipedia Solovetsky Monastery Uprising in 1666

Residents, Church Vie For History-Rich Russian Isles : NPR.

via Residents, Church Vie For History-Rich Russian Isles : NPR.

An old house in the small town in Solovki was originally built to house prisoners in the 1920s and 1930s.

When you look up “Volga tours” on the Internet, most advertise a quick St. Petersburg-to-Moscow trip, though technically neither city is on the Volga.

But the Volga is more than a river. It is an elaborate system of lakes, locks and manmade canals that links Russia’s two most famous cities. This network also reaches far to the north into the White Sea. For centuries, it was the shortest route to Europe and it became Russia’s main center of trade and defense.

Father Porfiry is abbot of the newly restored Solovetsky Monastery

EnlargeJohn Poole/NPRFather Porfiry is abbot of the newly restored monastery on Russia’s Solovetsky Islands, near the Arctic Circle. The Orthodox Church and local residents are fighting over who controls the future of the popular tourist destination, also known as Solovki.

The Solovetsky Islands, less than 100 miles from the Arctic Circle, have become a popular destination. Their history is dramatic — and that drama is still being played out.

For Russian tourists, the trip north to Solovki, as the islands are known, is worth the voyage. These remote islands sum up their country’s greatest achievements and its greatest tragedy.

Father Porfiry is abbot of the newly restored Solovetsky Monastery.

“For 500 years, this place reflected the genius and power of God. The Communist revolution was the story of a great fall. Now we have overcome all that and see the restoration of Russia and its spiritual life,” he says.

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November 6, 2010 - Posted by | communism, culture, environmental, glacier, global, government, history | , , , , , , ,

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