Lipno Island, Novgorod Region, January 7, Interfax - Russian President Vladimir Putin has taken part in the Christmas liturgy at the unique church of St. Nicholas on Lipno Island built in the 13th century.
Following the liturgy, the president congratulated Russians on Christmas and told journalists of the Rossiya 24 television channel about his understanding of God's love for humans.
"God's love for humans is not in fulfilling every wish and request, but in allowing praying for him and for us in hope for the best," Putin said.
According to Putin, hope and expectation of a miracle is the very guiding light shining on people's life journeys and supporting them in the darkest times.
St. Nicholas Church on Lipno Island is located on the Msta River in nine kilometers from Novgorod. There is no regular transportation to the island, it can be reached by a boat or, in winter, by walking on ice.
Putin and then-Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev paid a private visit to the island and the church in September 2016. It was decided following the visit that the Russian Culture Ministry would finance a restoration of this monument of ancient Russian architecture. The restoration, estimated as worth 21 million rubles, stated in 2017 and was completed in November 2019.
The church is protected by UNESCO, but no excursions were permitted for a long time due to its dilapidated condition.
At present, the monument has been restored to its initial state and is part of sightseeing tours.
According to the Novgorod chronicles, the St. Nicholas Church on Lipno Island was founded in 1292.