Kiev is famous for having a lot of sacred sites and churches. Each of them has its own history or even legends. Once you step into a church like that, you instantly feel how different the atmosphere here is. One of places like that as the Greek church that was named after Saint Ekaterina.
The church is situated in Kontraktova square, which is the name that was given to the square after merchants who used to sign their trading contracts in this place. The church used to be a magnificent building consisting of a lot of parts that occupied a large territory along with a big community. Nowadays we have only a bell tower and a few buildings, which were given to the National bank of Ukraine by the state officials. And although the Ukrainian Orthodox Church has been trying hard to get the church back, things still remain where they are.
The history of the church dates back to 1738, when it was founded by the Greek community of Kiev. The site for construction was spared by a Greek merchant Astamatiosovi Stimati, who was a member of the same community. He also took the responsibility of taking care of the church. It all started with a small wooden chapel and turned into a large temple, which initially resembled Ukrainian 3-domed churches. Later the church was reconstructed, and only one upper dome remained. Soon the church was given to a monastery, and for the following century and a half the household of the chirch became larger and had a lot of additional buildings. This growth continued until the Revolution of 1917, and already in 1928, following an order from atheistic Bolsheviks, the church began to be demolished. What wasn’t destroyed on purpose, was destroyed by time with no care being taken of the church.
An interesting fact about the history of the church is that the Greek church survived the large 1811 because of walls made of stone and closed doors.
Nowadays the bell tower and the remaining building of the Greek church stands out in the surroundings of Kontraktova square. Although the building still belongs to the National bank of Ukraine, services are still conducted three times a week.
Address of the Greek church: Kontraktova square, 2.