Serving the Lord in Russia

Monday, November 1, 2010

In Kiev, Ukraine

Last week Stephen and I had the opportunity to go to Kiev, Ukraine, for five days for the Europe East Mission Presidents Seminar.  This is held annually and this year it was in Kiev.  Fourteen mission presidents and their wives were there and we were trained by Elder Kevin Pearson from the MTC plus from our Area Presidency.  It was a great experience and we received wonderful training. 

On October 27th arrangements were made to attend the performance of the ballet, Swan Lake, in the beautiful Taras Shevchenko Ukrainian National Opera House.  This opera house was built in 1856 but in 1896 a fire erupted from an unextinguished candle and the theatre was destroyed.  One of the largest musical libraries in Europe along with numerous costumes and stage props were lost during the fire.  They rebuilt the opera house and its opening performance was on September 29, 1901. It is a beautiful building and we enjoyed the performance of Swan Lake by Peter Tchaikovski.

This says Swan Lake in Ukrainian.

The beautiful ceiling.

President and Sister Sorenson and President Sartori from the Russia Samara Mission.

This was the "coat check" token that was given when I checked in my coat and then you return it after the performance to claim your coat.  I thought this was a neat looking token.

On Thursday, October 28th, we went to recently dedicated Kyiv Temple and did a session with all the mission presidents, their wives and the Area Presidency.  It was an incredible experience and blessing!  Several times during the session I couldn't keep the tears from flowing because of the history in this part of the world and now the people here have waited a very long time for this beautiful temple.  I never dreamed that someday I would be sitting in the Celestial Room in a temple in the former Soviet Union.  The Lord has opened the doors to his people here and all the blessings are flowing in.

We were to late in the day to get inside this beautiful Ukrainian Orthodox Cathedral.  We believe it is St. Michael's Cathedral.

Looking in the opposite direction you can see Saint Sophia Cathedral whose first foundations were laid out in 1037 and which was completed to it present form in 1740.

We left the roses in Kiev to return to the first snow fall in Moscow.

Back home in our lovely Rosinka.


  1. What beautiful pictures and what an amazing experience to be at that temple!
    I loved the pictures at the ballet too. Swan Lake is one that I enjoy.

  2. Ooo it's starting to look cold there!

    That is a great picture of you and Dad in front of the temple. And I do like your purple scarf thing you're wearing...looks a bit Russian-ish, but I like it.

  3. I can't believe you have now been to that! Sounds wonderful.

  4. It's been incredible to catch up on your blog!! You sound like you are having a wonderful time! Happy late birthday...your hat is beautiful! Keep up the great is so fun to know how you guys are doing.

  5. I remember the Soviet Union being our arch-rival, in the not-so-distant past. What a miracle to have missionaries and even a temple there.

  6. This winter is rather snowy and cold in Kiev, but tourist can enjoy visiting theatrical performances. Ukraine Vacation Guide created a list of Kiev theatres, where you can choose an appropriate one. There is much more information on Ukraine tourism like transfer, accommodation, restaurants, cafes, nightclubs and anything else you may need while your travel to Ukraine.