What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun.
Is there anything of which one can say, “Look? This is something new”?
It was here already, long ago; it was here before our time.
Ecclesiastes 1:9, 10 (NIV)
Education and outreach project
“Russian Search of God”
Education and outreach project “Russian Search of God”, established in St. Petersburg in 2009, unites professional historians, journalists, creative professionals, religious figures, and enthusiastic researchers who draw wide public attention to little known history of Christianity in Russia.
As of today, the history of Russian religious dissent remains little explored, being often surrounded by many legends and speculations, that frequently leads to a distorted conception of the local religious life through out the whole history of Russian state up to present days. The refore, one of the project objectives is to collect archive documents, memories of participants of these events, and other related materials.
Our main activity areas:
- making popular-science films and TV programs about the history of Russian Evangelical Christianity;
- excursion and museum activity;
- organizing and holding festivals, educational events, concerts, presentations;
- educational literature publishing and many others.
As of today, “Russian Search of God” has several successful projects:
- Annual educational excursion trips to the State Historical, Architectural and Natural Museum-Reserve “Mon Repos Park”. During these trips, we learn about a professional and personal life of the last owner of “Mon Repos” estate, Baron Paul Nicolai.
In the early XX century, there were the first meetings of the Russian Christian Student Movement held in Russia at the estate of Paul Nicolai, the founder of the movement.
- “Evangelical Petersburg” - a regular sightseeing bus tour of the places of spiritual revival in St. Petersburg.
At the end of XIX – early XX century St. Petersburg became one of the centers of evangelical revival spread all over pre-revolutionary Russia.
- describing evangelical movement development in St.Petersburg and Russia during a pre-revolutionary period.
- Video lectures “Talks on History of Russian Evangelical Christianity in IX - XX centuries”. These lectures are compiled with Marina S. Karetnikova, PhD (Education), an honored ThD (Historical Theology), and a publicist.
The video lectures collection is the first systematized lecture material about the history of Russian evangelical Christianity that lifts the veil of little known history of evangelical Christians in Russia. Video lectures are illustrated with archive photographs, documents and paintings of Russian state museums’ collections.
Currently two parts of video lectures have been issued. The work on the project is still in progress.
- Documentary “Isaev”. The film is about life and family story of Veniamin N. Isaev who has been ministering life prisoners for 25 years already.
His grandfather was an aide-de-camp to Vasily I. Chapaev - the legendary Peter Isaev (Petka), a hero of the epic Soviet film “Chapaev” but his grandmother spent 16 years in Stalin’s prison camps for her faith in Christ.
- Documentary “Molokane – confession” (a working title) is about history and present days of spiritual Christians Molokans (“Milk-drinkers”) in Russia. Filming took place shortly before the elder Timothey Vasilyevich Schetinkin passed away. He was the founder and the head of the Union of Spiritual Christian Molokans Congregationsin Russia up to his last days.
This is a unique project where for the first time we managed to show Molokans’ life from within: their faith, everyday way of life, view of the world around. Currently the work on the project is still in progress.
- Documentary “Khachkar - the Tree of Life”. The film is dedicated to the importance of keeping the traditions, culture and faith alive. It stresses the value of personality and originality, opposed by faceless globalization that invades people’s private life. The main idea of the film is to keep alive the faith of ancestors, their moral and ethical values maintaining a delicate balance in life of a single person as well as human civilization in general. The film’s shot in a mountain village in Armenia.
- Documentary about Paul Nicolai with the participation of Paul Gundersen, Paul Nicolai’s close family friend and successor.
Paul Gundersen, who is 93 today, lives in Helsinki. He devoted all his life to an organization that promoted ethical values rebirth and influenced industrialists, labor unions leaders of many Nordic, European and Middle East countries.
Project organizers are planning to invite more people from different locations who would like to participate in the project to research and promote unknown pages of Russian Evangelical Christianity history, and to hold outreach and apologetic activities.
Speaking about the project “Russian Search of God” we believe that it was inspired by God and its participants are people connected with the history and present day Russia.