CATHEDRAL OF THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY
At the end of the XIX century in Moscow there were two Catholic churches: St. Louis on Malaya Lubyanka and the Holy apostles Peter and Paul in Milyutinsky lane. By that time, the number of visitors has reached 30 thousand persons, and in 1894 it was decided to erect a new branch Church of the parish of the apostles Peter and Paul. The Council of the Roman Catholic Church appealed to the Moscow Governor with the request to allow the construction of a third Catholic Church. The resolution, approved by Emperor Nicholas II, was obtained under the condition of the building away from the city center and the most revered Orthodox churches without towers and exterior sculptures (although the latter provision was later violated). The community of Moscow of poles began to raise the money to build. Money sent from all over the country and from abroad: many Russians, Belarusians, poles (including exiles), send in your donation. 10 000 roubles in gold were acquired 10 hectares of land in the area of the Malaya Gruzinskaya street. The Cathedral was designed by a parishioner of the Church of the apostles Peter and Paul, the well-known Moscow architect, the pole by origin, Tomas (Thomas) I. Bogdanovich-Dvorzhetsky, a teacher at the Moscow school of painting, sculpture and architecture. The building was designed in neo-Gothic style. Experts believe that for an architect, the facade was modelled on the Gothic Cathedral at Westminster Abbey and a prototype of the dome — the dome of the Cathedral in Milan.Construction work began in 1899 and the main volume of the Church was built in 1901-1911 gg The opening of the temple took place on December 21, 1911, and finishing work continued until 1917. According to some reports, the spires on the towers were only available in 1923. The construction of the temple at a cost of 300 thousand rubles in gold, additional sums were raised in 1911-1917, the finish and the purchase of Church facilities.
The Church operated until 1937 and was taken from the Catholics ‘ 30 July 1938. Church property was looted or destroyed, including the altar and organ. The facade was disfigured. The organization, located in the ruined temple, rebuilt its interior: the Church was divided on 4 floors, mutilated by remodeling the interior of this valuable monument of the Church architecture. Turrets over the main entrance were demolished under the pretext of the danger posed by them as a convenient interference for enemy bombers during the war. After the war, was demolished and the spire that crowned the dome. In 1976, the Moscow authorities intended to hand the building of the Temple, the chief administration of culture. Developed the project of its reconstruction into a concert hall for organ music. But the idea was not implemented due to the resistance situated in the building of organizations.
In 1989 the cultural Association “Polish House”, uniting Moscow of the poles, raised the question about the necessity of returning the building to its rightful owner — the Catholic Church. In January 1990 by a group of Moscow Catholics was formed of the Polish Catholic parish of the Immaculate Conception of the blessed virgin Mary. 8 December 1990, on the occasion of the feast of the Immaculate Conception of the blessed virgin Mary, O. Tadeusz Pikus (now Bishop) with the permission of the authorities for the first time after 60-year hiatus, celebrated mass on the steps of the Cathedral. Regular worship services began to be held from 7 June 1991. In 1996, long after the controversial eviction of a scientific research Facility, the Church was transferred to the Catholic Church. For several years in the temple underwent extensive restoration and reconstruction work, and on 12 December 1999 the State Secretary of Vatican cardinal Angelo Sodano solemnly consecrated the renovated Cathedral.