| During long period excruciating death of tsarТs family was considered as historical drama, just tragic episode. It is astonishing but after wars and catastrophes, privations and sacrifices we had no tenderness, pudency and spirit strength to admit our guilt for made misdeed. But fortunately there were people remorseful of that bloody nightТs occurrence. They secretly visited the place located far away of Ekaterinburg in deep forest. They came to this pit where tsarТs remains were burned. They came to recant, to ask forgiveness for this evil acts. The long road to the temple was started from these people.
In 1991 at the threshold of Soviet Union collapse the cross was installed at the place of imperator body and his family destruction for the first time. Within 1990s the cross was sometimes replaced; last time it was replaced in 1998 after its destruction by vandals. Small bunch of flowers are always at the bottom of the cross during summer and pine branches Ц during winter. Today massive cross made of fumed oak in accordance with orthodox canons is installed above open pit where tsarТs remains were burn. It has inscription from the Holy Scripture: УI will not forgive him as he burnt the bones of Edom tsar into limeФ. This inscription is like an echo of tragic events of 1918. It is last note made by the empress Alexandra Fedorovna in her diary who was killed in two hours by Bolsheviks. Scriptural words have become oracular words for tsarТs family.
In September of 2000 Alexiy II, the Patriarchy of Moscow and All Russia, went to Ganina Yama during his historical visit to the Ural. Here he hold the Divine Liturgy and gave his blessing to construction of the Monastery complex in the name of Saint Regal Martyrs. УThe best way of memory perpetuation in Russia is the construction of the church or the monastery foundation,Ф Ц told the Holly Patriarchy. УI hope the God will help us in construction of new church. I hope that continuous prayer will take place here. I hope that the place of tsarТs family killing and Orthodox treasure destruction will become the beginning of new life according to GodТs lawsФ Ц these are the words of archbishop of Ekaterinburg and Vikentiy of Verkhotourie dated 1 October, 2000. The first stone was laid as the foundation of the first church of the Monastery complex in the name of Saint Regal Martyrs in that day.
But architectural concept of the monastery was not formed at once. In accordance with initial idea the complex should represent secluded skete with one church in the name of Saint Regal Martyrs, town residence of the Patriarch and cells. Then it was decided to expand this complex up to seven churches to hold seven Holy Liturgies at the same time. Unlike the skete which will not allow invitation of palmers the Monastery complex has mission feature like the Holy Trinity-St. Sergius Lavra.
All churches at Ganina Yama are made of the wood in accordance with the best traditions of Russian wooden architecture. УDo not spent time for decoration, leave the time for prayersФ, - holy fathers say. Therefore all buildings look very ascetic reminding about hard way of purifying, spiritual healing and satisfaction. Each church is equipped with furnace heating. The furnaces are laid out also according to the best Russian traditions: one cord of wood is enough for heating of whole building.
Major part of the Monastery complex was built during less than half a year: three churches, the House of Hierarchs, campanile, monkТs cells. People worked during day and night, at hard frost and summer heat, under snowfall and downpour. The monkТs themselves, workers, local well-doers and patrons are participated in this construction. On 7 January, 2001 archbishop of Ekaterinburg and Vikentiy of Verkhotourie held the first Divine Liturgy in the church in the name of Saint Regal Martyrs. Also he consecrated the opening of the Monastery on 17 July, 2001 at the anniversary of tsarТs family death.
During last four years Ural Mining and Metallurgical Company helped in construction of seven churches in accordance with the number of tsarТs family members. Thousand pilgrims currently consider this place like the saint one. УThe construction of the monastery complex at this place has great importance for everyone, - Andrey Kozitsyn, General Director of UMMC, tells. Ц This is our repentance for terrible crime perpetrated at this place. Revival of faith begins from such placesФ.
The Church in the name of Saint Regal Martyrs
The main church of this complex is the Church in the name of Saint Regal Martyrs located in immediate proximity to the pit where the remains of tsarТs family were utilized. Its bell gable has eight bells made by the local bell-makers. The biggest bell with weigh of 1.5 tons was made in the memory of emperor Nikolay II and the smallest bell was made in the honor of tsarevitch Alexey. At the beginning of 2001 the first Divian Liturgy was held here in Christmas and the church altar was decorated by reliquary cross belonged to Saint Regal Martyrs on 19 May, 2001 (the birth day of tsar Nokolay II). Unique relic was solemnly transferred from Transfiguratio Domini Church to the monastery on Ganina Yama by religious procession. Reliquary cross keeps following grand Christian worship objects: part of GodТs riza, part of the Blessed Virgin MaryТs riza, vivifying beam of Holy Cross, and saint healing relics of forty Holy God-pleasers as well Ц St. Andrew, St. Sergius of Radonezh, St. Paphnutius of Borovsk, St. Alexander Nevski and St. Deniel Alexandrovich. After installation this unique cross showed its wonder and has been fragrant. People can feel its fragrance being rather far away from this place. So it was decided to hold religious procession with tsarТs reliquary cross after every day church service.
The Church in the name of Saint Seraphim of Sarov with underground chapel in honor of the Icon of the Mother of God УDeep emotionФ
At the end of spring of 2001 the Church in the honor of St. Seraphim of Sarov who became famous according to tsarТs directions was constructed. In 1824 St. Seraphim of Sarov predicted that УЕit will be tsar, who makes me famous. Then Great distemper will be in Russia, a lot of blood will be as a result of insurrection against tsar. Angels will fail to take souls. All insurgents will perish and tsar will be glorified by GodФ.
The temple in the name of the Icon of the Mother of God УDeep emotionФ which was favorite icon of Seraphim is located in underground chapel of the Church of St. Seraphim of Sarov. Only celebrants have access to this underground temple. They read the Psalms all day around there. The monks highlight this celebration: continuous prayer at penitential place provides spiritual purification and renovation.
The Church in the name of St. Sergius of Radonezh
The church in honor of Sergius of Radonezh, Russian monkshood gatherer and founder of the Holy Trinity-St. Sergius Lavra was consecrated in summer of 2001. This Church is the highest one in the monastery complex on Ganina Yama. The height of its dome with the cross is 37 meters. Monastery library and brethren cells are located on ground floor.
The height of the church is not its the only distinctive feature. The Church in the name of St. Sergius of Radonezh has unusual architecture with elements of eastern style in particular Chinese pagodas. Point is that it was constructed in accordance with pictures of the Orthodox churches in Harbin which were built by Russian diasporas and destroyed during of culture revolution in China in 1960s of past century. Thus own Orthodox УpagodaФ has appeared in the Ural.
The Church in the name of the Iberian icon of the Mother of God
Gatehouse church in honor of the Iberian icon of the Mother of God which was founded on 11 April, 2001 is also unusual in its version.
In XVII century archbishop Nikon, future Patriarch, ordered duplication of the miracle-working icon in Athos. According to legend when this icon appeared on Athos mountain it was placed in altar but it disappeared and being above gates told to monks: УYou will not save me but I doФ. Since then it is called as the Iberian in the name of the Monastery in Georgia and it gives blessing to travelers for long journey. The duplication of the miracle-working Iberian icon of the Mother of God specially assigned for new church in the Monastery in the name of Saint Regal Martyrs arrived from Athons to Ekaterinburg in July of 2002. The icon was kept in the Holy Trinity Council of Ekaterinburg during three months and was passed to just build church on Ganina Yama.
The Church in the name of St. Nickolas the Wonderworker, Archbishop of Myra in Lycia
Two sextons from the Ascension church of Ekaterinburg are founders of the Church in the name of St. Nickolas the Wonderworker, Archbishop of Myra in Lycia. The picture showing them on Ganina Yama represents fired square. The construction of the Church of St. Nickolas the Wonderworker started at the place of this square at the left from the cross located near the pit after blessing of Master Vikentiy. It was solemnly consecrated on 19 May, 2002.
The icon of St. Nickolas was specially made for new church at Athons and then consecrated in Italian city Bari on relics of hierarch. According to information of archbishop Vikentiy the icon-painter could not make this icon for a long period, he prayed a lot until he saw the icon in his sleep. He painted the image directly on wall and after he made it on the board. In May of 2002 the icon was delivered to Ekaterinburg and was transferred to Ganina Yama by religious procession. Vault of the church of St. Nickolas the Wonderworker has seventeen domes as reminding about terrible date of 17 July, 1918, the day of Nickolay II and his family killing.
The Church in honor of the icon of the Most Holy Mother of God
The opening of the church in the name of the icon of the Most Holy Mother of God in 6 January of 2002 coincided with second anniversary of historical visit of Alexiy II, Patriarch of Moscow and all-Russian, to eparchy of Ekaterinburg.
According to canons the icon of the Most Holy Mother of God appeared in Russia in that day then the last Russian tsar Nikolay II abdicated. The icon shows the Heavenly Queen with tsarТs regalia in her hands as a symbol of that she saved and directed Russia and its population in disturbing period after 1917.
Like the church of St. Sergius of Radonezh the church in the honor of the Most Holy Mother of God is distinguished first of all by its sizes. Located on the hill it rises kinglike over the whole complex. The construction height along the cross achieves 38 meters, the significant area Ц about 250 square meters Ц allows it to house more than 500 church people simultaneously. The height of the upper tower crowned with copper onion dome is 14 meters and it weights 14 tons. The other feature is a separate stone bell gable and stone open arcade.
Both testaments of orthodox architects and state-of-the-art technologies were used in construction of this temple. Double-deck choirs provide the temple with unique majesty and stone socle and heated floor form unique microclimate which keeps icons in good condition.
The Church in the name of St. Job the Longsuffering
The Church in the name of St. Job the Longsuffering at Patriarchal church in house was founded on 8th of February,2003 on the memory day of St. Righteous Job the Longsuffering. The Emperor Nikolai II was born on the memory day of this saint person and he considered this coincidence to be remarkable.
The Church in the name of Job the Longsuffering is a completing church of the complex. It is wooden and small like all churches at Ganina Yama. The passage and beautiful staircase connect it with the church in house of vladiko, which is a cosy timbered building for honorable guests.
Today the monastery at Ganina Yama has become the place of pilgrimage of many believers from different cities and towns of Russia and abroad. It is a place of memory, spiritual unity of all people regardless their religion and social status. The religious processions along Tsar Way Цfrom Voznesenskaya Hill to Ganina Yama - have become traditional.
Vikentiy, the Archbishop of Ekateringburg and Verkhoturie, highly appreciated the meaning of men monastery in the name of Saint Tsar Suffers erection for Russia: УHere, at Ganina Yama the great malefaction took place and here the rebirth of Russia shall start on the base of orthodox religion. That is why the complex is built using the best traditions of architecture Ц using wood as it was in ancient times when Orthodoxy was only appearingФ.