Photo exhibiton dedicated 120th Anniversary of Russian Church in Jaffa opens in Tel Aviv

On January 15, in the Russian cultural center, a photo exhibition, dedicated to the 120th anniversary of consecration of the Church of Holy Apostle Peter and Saint Tabitha was opened at the dependency of the Russian Ecclesiastical Mission in Abu-Kabir in Jaffa - a south suburb of Tel Aviv.

In the past, Russian pilgrims would arrive at the Holy Land through the Jaffa seaport. On January 29, 1896, the church was consecrated by Patriarch Gerasimus of Jerusalem in honor of Holy Apostle Peter, who has been especially venerated in Jaffa.

Representatives of the Russian embassy in Israel and of the Russian Ecclesiastical Mission in Jerusalem, church parishioners, Israeli residents and guests from Moscow were present at the opening of the exhibition.

The organizers of the exhibition are the priest in charge of the dependency of St. Tabitha in Jaffa Archpriest Igor Pchelintsev, and director of the cultural centre Natalia Yakimchuk.

The exposition includes historical and modern photographs that relate the history of the dependency, building and beautification of the church on the territory of the parcel of land in Jaffa, where there was the tomb of Tabitha, who had been raised from the dead by Apostle Peter (Acts 9:36). This parcel of land was acquired in 1868 by head of the mission, Archimandrite Antonin (Kapustin, 1865–1894).

Modern photographs of the Russian dependency and church interior, made by the professional photographer Reuven Brenner, are exhibited. Also some rare ancient photographs can be seen at the exhibition, which depict Grand Dukes Sergei and Paul Alexandrovich as well as Holy Grand Duchess Elisabeth Feodorovna, who were present in 1888 during the laying of the foundation stone of the future church, together with portraits of Archimandrite Antonin (Kapustin) and other figures, associated with the history of the Russian church in Jaffa.

Also photographs showing stages of construction of the buildings of the church and the house for pilgrims on the territory of the dependency, are displayed. It was founded so that pilgrims, on their arrival to Jaffa and making their first steps on the Holy Land, might rest, restore their strength, pray and go further to the Holy City of Jerusalem.

The exhibition in Tel Aviv also contains color photographs, which were made at the dependency over last 20 years. This collection includes photographs that tell of the visit in 1997 of His Holiness Patriarch Alexei II of Moscow and All Russia, about gilding of bells and the present-day state of the church and the dependency.

At present the Russian dependency in Jaffa is considered to be one of the most beautiful places of Tel Aviv.