Judittenkirche (St. Nicholas Orthodox Cathedral)

 Evgeniy Morozov/Welcome2018.com

Judittenkirche is considered to be the oldest building on the territory of Kaliningrad. Historians argue about the temple’s founding date, the most common version refers back to 1288 - the date of first mention in the written chronicles. The building stands on a hill and partly resembles an ancient fortress because of its powerful walls, loophole windows and the main nave made from untreated boulders. This monument of early Germanic Gothic architecture became a place of religious pilgrimage even before the Reformation. Here was the famous wonderworking sculpture entitle Virgin and Child on the Crescent Moon, which, as the legend says, was always warm. It was credited with numerous miracles. Throughout its history, the church was rebuilt several times, and in 1907, during another restoration, the frescoes of the late 14th century were cleaned of whitewash. Unfortunately, they did not survive to this day.

Judittenkirche was not damaged in the war, but fell into disuse and became desolated during the Soviet era. In 1985, the ruins of the church were given to the Russian Orthodox Church, and in 1986 it was consecrated in honor of Saint Nicholas the Wonderworker. Thus the first Orthodox church appeared on the territory of the Kaliningrad region. In 1999, the first Orthodox monastery appeared here, with church as its basis. Judittenkirche (St. Nicholas Cathedral), although located on the outskirts of Kaliningrad, is one of the symbols of the city: it is depicted on a coin issued by the Central Bank as part of the Architectural Monuments of Russia series.