Transfiguration (Spaso-Preobrazhenska) Church

Hi, I’m Artiom. Have you heard about an unusual Moshny Church? I want to tell you about the Transfiguration (Spaso-Preobrazhenska) Church. This church is located in the village of Moshny in the Cherkasy region.

Moshny is a place that has been around for 500 years. Many important people lived there, but it was most popular in the early 1800s when Count Mikhail Vorontsov married Elizaveta, who was the daughter of Crown Hetman Ksaveriy Brantsian, in 1819. Because of the marriage, Count Vorontsov got Moshny and the land around it.

At first, Count Vorontsov built a stone palace in Moshny, but it got destroyed by the Bolsheviks in the 1920s. Then, between 1830 and 1839, they made a church in a special style that combined Gothic and Eastern designs. An architect named Giorgio Torricelli, who was from Italy but born in Odessa, designed the church. It’s not like other Orthodox churches because it has both romantic and Gothic styles. The church is a mix of different things, like Eastern patterns and Tudor Gothic. The architect wanted to bring together different religions in one building. The church looks like a medieval palace and has a bell tower that is 44 meters tall.

The history was kind to the church—back in 1926, during the Bolshevik regime, it was granted the status of an architectural monument. During the occupation, the fascists tried to destroy the church because its bell tower was considered an important observation post. However, it survived their attempts.

Giorgio Torricelli created an exact copy of the church in France, near Paris. The Transfiguration Church in Moshny is often compared to a synagogue, mosque, and a church at the same time. It features elements reminiscent of the Cathedral of Notre-Dame in Paris and the mosques of Istanbul. In 1853, Polish writer M. Grabowski described the church as follows: “In the town of Moshny, a new church gleams. Its square tower, of exquisite architecture, is far from resembling ordinary rural bell towers. It feels as if you are admiring an English landscape from an English park.”

I have a personal connection to Moshny church as I was baptized here. It holds a special place in my heart and my family’s as well since my mother was also baptized in this church. Additionally, my parents got married here. I have a deep love for this place, and I would like to visit it again.