History

This Cathedral is dedicated to the Holy Resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ, but is commonly known as Nicolai-do, affectionately named after St. Nicholas Kasatkin (1836 ~ 1912).

Plans for Holy Resurrection Cathedral were drawn up by Professor Michael A. Schurupov, an architect and member of the Engineering Society of Russia. An English architect, Josiah Conder, supervised the construction from 1884 ~ 1891 on the present site. The design of the cathedral, both interior and exterior, was based on the Byzantine style. Unfortunately, the belfry collapsed onto the dome and the former magnificent interior was completely destroyed by fire at the time of the great Kanto earthquake in 1923.
The cathedral was restored in 1929 with some modifications, namely to the belfry, which was lowered and the top made to resemble the dome. The dome, which is around 35 meters from the floor, was slightly altered and the interior of the church made simpler. The graceful sight of the cathedral has been a favorite
symbol oF the Ochanomizu area since it was built and is still visited by many people every year.

The founder of the cathedral, St.Nicholas (Kasatkin), was twenty-five when he first came to Japan as a young priest assigned to the Russian consulate in Hakodate. He spent the first seven years studying the Japanese language, culture and religion. St. Nicholas
began to introduce Orthodox Christianity to the local community and within a few decades there were thirty thousand Japanese Orthodox faithful. St.Nicholas translated the scriptures and many liturgical books and prayer books into Japanese, all of which are still in use today. After his death on February 16, 1912, at the age of seventy-five, the Orthodox Church in Japan faced a period of historical obstacles such as the Russian Revolution and World War II, which greatly inhibited the growth of the church. However, the church has once again begun to grow as is evidenced from the many churches one can see throughout Japan .

St. Nicholas was canonized in 1970 (St. Nicholas, Equal-to-the-Apostles and Enlightener of Japan) when the status of autonomy was granted to the Orthodox Church of Japan from the Mother Church in Russia .

The current primate of Orthodox Church of Japan is His Eminence Daniel (Nushiro), Archbishop of Tokyo and Metropolitan of All Japan.