Twenty years ago a building project was started that helped define the landscape of Podgorica and Montenegro in varying ways. Saborni Hram Hristovog Vaskrsenja (Cathedral of the Resurrection of Christ) officially opened October 2013 signaling 1700 years since the Edict of Milan signed by Constantine. This Orthodox temple does not have the historical story that Orthodox holy sites such as Ostrog have, but it’s architecture and design help to draw petitioners and travelers alike. Two examples that stand out are the bell and chandelier of the temple. The bell is the largest ever placed on a shrine, and the chandelier is the largest in Europe.
The overall structure is immense! The temple is the third largest Orthodox temple in the world only surpassed by Sveti Sava in Belgrade, Serbia and Temple of Christ the Savior in Moscow, Russia.
From the outside, the building is a bit imposing especially considering its location in the middle of a high residential and retail area of town. The cross here was a gift from Russia for the opening of the temple.
Inside, the temple is full of detail. It is ladened with gold. Paintings depicting scenes from the Bible, history, and culture fill the sanctuary.
The temple also has its discreet messages staggered throughout. When visiting, pay attention to the paintings depicting heaven and hell asking the question, “Who are these familiar looking faces?” (Hint: Men from former Yugoslav history, current leaders, and historical world leaders all have their places.)