Possible erection of St.Nicholas monument in Novosibirsk causes division in local community

Meanwhile, Arts council rejected public request on erecting monument honouring Stalin

In Novosibirsk recently took place so-called “people’s polls” ,researching public opinion on possible erection of a monument of St. Nicholas. 18 of 22 participants rejected this initiative.

No one asked for this..

This project was developed and suggested by Russian Orthodox Church (ROC). Their representatives stated that best suitable spot for a monument will be near Voznesensky cathedral at Cheluskintsev st., at the parking lot.

But so-called people’s polls have no deciding power. They all concidered just as a mere reccomendations for a city’s Arts Council. Not so long ago, more than 50% of Novosibirsk dwellers supported the idea of erecting Stalin’s bust, yet council and city major (Anatoly Lokot, who is also a member of CPRF –official “communist” party of Russia), rejected the idea. So there is no guarantee, that this time they will respect will of the people.

As an alternative, other sites were proposed, such as inside a cathedral’s territory and near the church in Burmistrovo village

But what ordinary dwellers of local community have to say?Let’s hear them out.

“Novosibirsk is a city of scientists, and Russian Federation is a secular state. I am against erecting a monument in a public square or nearby. If ROC considers erecting of the monument necessary, let them do it inside a space of a cathedral” – suggests one of the residents.

“I am strongly oppose the initiative of erecting church’s monuments in Narymsky square or anywhere near. Everyday I walk through this square, and to my artistic taste, this monument is just ugly. It looks huge, aggressive and lame, and it will hurt my agnostic feelings. It is not wise to enrage the people, to provoke another protest. We already have more churches in the city than public squares ”- stated another citizen.
“Monument of a most respected saint is what Novosibirsk needs. It will reflect our history and our hopes for a future” – shared his thoughts supporter of a monument.

We must mot forget, that Valery Lukianenko, deputy of VTB bank was put in charge of fundraising for a project. This alone may shift the balance in favor of monument supporters.