Saint Sophia Church, Moscow

A mid-17th-century Russian Orthodox parish church standing on the Balchug Island opposite the Moscow Kremlin

View of Sofiyskaya Embankment from across Moskva River. Balchug Street (far left), Belltower of St. Sophia (middle), Rosneft Headquarters
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The church of Saint Sophia is believed to have been founded by the merchants from the city of Novgorod, where the Saint Sophia Cathedral is the main sanctuary.

Belltower of St. Sophia church in Moscow
pinterest button Belltower of St. Sophia church in Moscow Stoljaroff, Public Domain

The church gives its name to the Sofievskaya Embankment of the Moskva River.

The ornate building next to the church is the headquarters of the Rosneft, the world's largest listed oil company.

Church of Sophia, Sofiyskaya Embankment, Moscow
pinterest button Church of Sophia, Sofiyskaya Embankment, Moscow Ludvig14, CC BY-SA 3.0

The mauve frontage is dominated by a tapering bell tower rising above the entrance. The openwork belfry was designed in the 1860s so as to echo the Kremlin towers across the river. The revivalist design is by Nikolay Kozlovsky.

Sophia church, Moscow,1883
pinterest button Sophia church, Moscow,1883 Nikolai Naidenov (1834-1905), Public Domain

The church was closed for worship between 1930 and 2004. Inside the main building was a kommunalka.