Chapel of the Snows

The Chapel of the Snows, a non-denominational place of worship at NSF’s McMurdo Station, Antarctica, overlooks McMurdo Sound and the Royal Society mountain range.

The current chapel, dedicated in 1989, features stained glass related to the Antarctic Continent; the Erebus Chalice, a William IV silver gilt chalice carried aboard HMS Erebus by Sir James Clark Ross on his Antarctic voyage during the period 1839-43; and memorabilia from the U.S. Navy‘s involvement in Operation Deep Freeze, the precursor to the NSF-managed U.S. Antarctic Program.

The chapel’s altar comes from St. Saviour’s Chapel in Lyttelton, New Zealand, where Robert Falcon Scott worshiped prior to embarking on his Terra Nova Expedition.

Source: Office of Polar Programs – National Science Foundation

Image; Andrea Dixon, NSF

The full story of the Chapel of the Snows at  (WAP USA-22) can be found at:

http://www.southpolestation.com/trivia/history/chapel.html

Antarctica: Inside the southernmost Russian Orthodox Church

Members of the Antarctic Uruguayan ARTIGAS Base (WAP URY-Ø1), journalists and other guests visited the Trinity Church in Russia’s Bellinsghausen Polar Station (WAP RUS-Ø1) on King George Island, Antarctica, during the first week of December 2015. The priest explained to guest how the church was built as well as delivered a speech about the Orthodox and Christian churches in the twenty-first century. (see a video by cicking the gif aside

The head of the largest of the world’s Eastern Orthodox churches, Patriarch Kirill, has become the first Orthodox leader to visit Antarctica.

A week after meeting Pope Francis to smooth over centuries of tensions with the Roman Catholic Church, the Russian Orthodox Church’s Patriarch Kirill has reached out to another historically non-Orthodox congregation: penguins.

 

The Patriarch, who heads the largest of the world’s various eastern Orthodox churches, arrived at Russia’s Bellingshausen research station on King George Island, just off the coast of Antarctica, on Febr. 18, 2016.

(see a video by cicking the gif aside)

 

 

Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and all Russia prayed at the Trinity Church at the Russian Antarctic Station Bellingshausen on the island of Waterloo (aka King George Island). -You are here on the top of the planetWhen I sanctified the water in Antarctica today, I thought about the whole globe below us, and prayed for God’s creation. Praying  in this temple for relatives and all  who works here in Antarctica, for their Countries and the whole world– said the Patriarch.

He took a walk with penguins on the island’s rocky shore before delivering a service for scientists at the Station’s Holy Trinity Church, the southernmost Russian Orthodox chapel on the planet.(see another video by cicking the gif aside)

 

 

 

 

«Ubi sunt duo vel tres congregati in nomine meo, ibi sum in medio eorum» (Matthew’s Gospel Mt 18,20)

In the last century, the Pontiffs have crossed the boundaries and the Oceans to bring the blessing of God to all peoples, but none have thought of going to Antarctica, a place at the end of the world as Pope Francis says to come from !  Perhaps this possibility could be a goal to him … if he wants it.

The blessing of a vast Earth larger  than Europe, occupied by hundreds of scientific Stations and thousands of people engaged in research, needs the blessing of a Church witnessing to those latitudes the love of God and of the Blessed Mother, His Most Holy Mother.

 

The above message has been delivered by WAP, 4 years ago to Pope Francis, after having sent the same one  to Pope Benedict XVI few years before. That was given among the  WAP proposal to build a Catholic Churh at the Italian Mario Zucchelli Station following the idea launched in the year 2004.

 

When does Italy break the fear and do something like that?

St. Volodymyr Chapel at Ukrainian Vernadsky Base 

“When we send polar explorers to the South Pole we don’t ask about their confession, but every person can have a wish to be alone, to pray. Why don’t we build a church?” said  Director of the National Ukrainian Antarctic Scientific Center,  Valery Litvinov .

The St. Volodymyr Chapel, named after Vladimir the Great, is a Ukrainian Orthodox chapel located in the Ukrainian Antarctic Station of Vernadsky Research Base. It is not the first Orthodox church on the ice continent: Russian carpenters built a 15-meter Orthodox church from Siberian cedar in 2004 that is dedicated to the Holy Trinity.

“When you pray there you get unspeakable impressions. It is zero altitude, but you have such a feeling that the church almost flies above Earth,” said Archbishop Augustine of Lvov and Galicia who did consecrate the Ukrainian chapel.

The chapel is small but its work is excellent. It has been  sent to Antarctica while a new group of polar explorers was there. The building and installation of the chapel has been paid by philanthropists. The church is located on Galindez Island at the site of the Ukrainian  research Base. It was built in 2011 and it’s the latest addition to the base buildings.

A wonderful virtual tour, including outside and inside views of St. Volodymyr Chapel,  is available by clicking the gif here aside

 

The St. Ivan Rilski Chapel (St. John of Rila Chapel) at the Bulgarian Base

The Orthodox presence in Antarctica arises as parts of various expeditions from major Orthodox Christian Nations to the continent as there is not permanent population in Antarctica.

St. Ivan Rilski Chapel at St Kliment Ohridski Station (Livingston Island in the South Shetlands) is the first Eastern Ortodox edifice in Antarctica, the southernmost Eastern Orthodox building of worship in the world

The chapel, was named after patron of the Bulgarians, St.Ivan Ritski. It was built in the year 2003 with the assistance of the Bulgarian Antarctic scientific team.

The foundation stones of the chapel were laid down on December 9, 2001, at that time, the base employs a total of between 12 and 15 people, geologists, biologists, doctors, meteorologists, botanists and others .

A Spanish ship transported the parts that were used to build the chapel and it was completed on 2003. The chapel features include  a bell, a cross, and icons of St. Ivan Rilski, and Jesus Christ the Bridegroom.

The Christian chapel is located on the Livingston Island’s Bulgarian Base of St. Kliment Ohridski.

Recently (year 2012) a new building (see picture aside) was erected on a small slope; it gives the impression to protect the Base from above.

Church in Antarctica

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