Yekaterinburg

My trip to Yekaterinburg was more a pilgrimage than a tourist trip and I didn’t get to see much. Nonetheless I plan to return here and see a large variety of sites in future.
The city has much to see in history, statues, and parks. It is without question a place with enough to keep the traveller for many days. However on the bus into the city from Chelyabinsk I also noticed how every car was covered in thick dust. The pollution here (as well as in Chelyabinsk) cannot be good for long term health. That aside there is a lot to keep some one here. The most famous site in Yekaterinburg is without question the Cathedral of the Blood and the main reason for me to visit. Being a shrine to Tsar St Nikolai II one of my favourite saints.

The Church on the Blood (in Honour of All Saints) is built on the site of former Ipatiev House and the altar on where the Tsar was martyred.
The other site of pilgrimage which we also saw is Ganina Yama where the Tsar ad his family and servant were buried in a shallow grave. On the grounds is a monastery.
As per Orthodox custom woman should be wearing a dress (and if they don’t a clip/ tie on skirt will be provided and head covering). Shorts are not acceptable for men or women etc.

Apart from we didn’t see much in Yekaterinburg after eating. A 1 day trip is not enough.. In fact several days are not enough..just a pity about the air pollution

Tsar Nicholas II and family

Tsar Nicholas II

Often derided in the press and after all the Soviets had an invested interest in painting a monster as the intelligentsia before he was by all accounts pious and his marriage a model. This is reflected that when the Tsar abdicated and was held by the pre-soviet revolutionaries his English teacher Charles Sydney Gibbs – author of an Englishman in the court of the Tsar and French tutor Pierre Gilliard among others voluntary followed him into exile. In fact those close to him stayed by him until forcibly separated by the Bolsheviks. And in fact some of his servants followed him to death.
Charles Sydney Gibbs became an Orthodox monk even taking the name of Nikolas.

The Bolsheviks moved the Tsar and his family to Ipatiev House. There they were brutally murdered. The soviets turned the building into Agricultural School then as an Anti-Religious Museum.
The problem for the soviets is the memory of Nikolas did not die away and people came often at night to lay flowers and remember the tsar and Boris Yeltin (pre-the fall of the USSR) demolished the building for this purposes.
However communism fell before the memory of the Tsar and a Church dedicated to the Tsar was built and an altar is on the spot where the Tsar was murdered

For further information read

An Englishman in the Court of the Tsar
Thirteen years at the Russian court

The sermons of St John of Shanghai & Sanfrancisco:
http://www.russianorthodoxchurch.ws/english/pages/legacy/regicide.html
http://passaicrussianchurch.com/books/english/sermons_john_maximovich.htm#_Toc100019533

Romanov Memorial