House Church of St. Catherine the Great Martyr in the building of the Academy of Arts


The Church of St. Catherine the Great Martyr at the Academy of Arts was the first of the temples at higher educational institutions to be revived in 1990-s in the country

The Church of St. Catherine the Great Martyr at the Academy of Arts is an organic part of the Academy’s historic building as a house church, built in St. Petersburg by architects A.F. Kokorinov and J.-B. Wallen-Delamotte in the style of early classicism.

With the ceremonial laying of the future church with the participation of Empress Catherine II, the construction of the Imperial Academy of Arts began in 1765. The service was performed by Metropolitan Dimitry of Novgorod (Sechenov) and Archbishop of St. Petersburg Gavriil (Kremenetsky). It was originally intended to devote the temple St. John of Damascus, the defender of icons in the era of iconoclasm, but later, upon completion of work in the interior, at the consecration St. Catherine became the patroness of the church (apparently, not only in memory of the empress co-named by her, who reorganized the Academy, but, above all, in the hope of the help of the saint herself, who represents the image of Christian wisdom and exalted beauty).

Legally, the parish was opened on June 10, 1991, and in fact, on November 10 of the same year, when the first Divine Liturgy was celebrated.

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