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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