Religion in Moscow

Christianity is the predominant religion in the city, of which the Russian Orthodox Churchis the most popular

Cathedral of Christ the Saviour. Moscow, Russia.
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Moscow is Russia's capital of Eastern Orthodox Christianity, which has been the country’s traditional religion and was deemed a part of Russia's «historical heritage» in a law passed in 1997. 

Other religions practiced in Moscow include Armenian Apostolicism, Buddhism, Catholicism, Islam, Judaism, Old Believers,Protestantism, and Rodnovery.

The Patriarch of Moscow serves as the head of the church and resides in the Danilov Monastery. Moscow was called the «city of 40 times 40 churches»—"город сорока сороков церквей"—prior to 1917.

In 1918 the Bolshevik government declared Russia a secular state, which in practice meant that religion was repressed and society was to become atheistic.

During the period of 1920—1930s a great number of churches in Moscow were demolished, including historical Chudov Monastery in the Kremlin, dating from the 14th century, Kazansky Cathedral on the Red Square, the Cathedral of Christ the Savior, constructed in the 19th century in memory of a victory over Napoleon's army in 1812, and many more.

This continued even after the Second World War, in 1940—1970s, when persecutions against religion in the Soviet Union became less severe. Most of the surviving churches and monasteries were closed and then used as clubs, offices, factories or even warehouses.

Since the disintegration of the Soviet Union in 1991 many of the destroyed churches have been restored and traditional religions are once again gaining popularity.

Cathedral of Christ the Saviour, demolished during the Soviet period, was reconstructed during 1990–2000
pinterest button Cathedral of Christ the Saviour, demolished during the Soviet period, was reconstructed during 1990–2000 Nixer, Public Domain

Among the churches reconstructed in the 1990s is an impressive new Cathedral of Christ the Savior which once more has become a picturesque landmark of the city. It was built on the site of the old demolished cathedral, where there had been a huge open swimming-pool until 1994.

Muslims constitute around 1.5 million, that is 14% of the population. There are four mosques in the city