Putin continues tradition of going to rural churches on Christmas Eve


Interfax-Religiia, 7 January 2016


Russian President Vladimir Putin attended Christmas services in the church of the Protection of the Holy Mother of God in the village of Turginovo in Tver province.


V. Putin also went to this church in 2011, where his parents were baptized. At that time he presented to the rector an icon of the Protection [Pokrov] of the Holy Mother of God, a work by an unidentified master dating from the beginning of the 19th century.


Sources first mention the wooden church in the village of Turginovo in the first half of the 17th century. The first stone church appeared on this site approximately in the middle of the 18th century. In 1911 the future parents of V. Putin were baptized here; they were native to these places and resided in the nearest villages, which is indicated by information found in archives of the regional religious newspaper.


An old cemetery is also located in the village, where V. Putin's grandmother, Elizaveta Shelomova, is buried.


V. Putin regularly attends churches during major church holidays. Last year he attended the Christmas service in a village church near Voronezh. In 2014, in the night of 6 to 7 January, the president attended the new Sochi church that was erected next to the Olympic park. In 2013 he attended Christmas service in the St. George Holy Trinity monastery in the village of Lesnoe of Adler district. A year earlier V. Putin arrived for the holiday service in the Transfiguration cathedral of St. Petersburg, where he was baptized.


V. Putin has attended Christmas services in the church consecrated to the holy martyrs Alexander and Antonina of Rome in the village of Selishche of Kostroma province, the Presentation church in the village of Solomennoe in Karelia, the St. Prokopy cathedral in Veliky Ustiug, and the New Jerusalem monastery. In 2006 V. Putin met Christmas in one of the churches of Yakutsk, where at the time the temperature was 60 degrees below zero.


In 2001 the head of state stayed in the capital on 7 January, in the church of Christ the Savior, and in 2000 V. Putin, at the time still acting president of the Russian federation, attended the holiday service in the church of the Life-giving Trinity on Vorobiev Hills.

(tr. by PDS, posted 7 January 2016)


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