Church of Sveta Nedelya, Sofia
Sveta Nedelya is an eastern orthodox cathedral.
Nedelya means Sunday , so the name must be from Saint Sunday, a christian martyr of the 3rd Century, but some others claim that it has to do with the greek word kiriaki (Sunday in greek), the day of the lord, maybe that’s why the church was called Sveti Kral, Holy King in the late 19th century)
It’s was built in 19th century (between 1856-1863) by the Bulgarian architectural team Vasilyov-Tsolov in neo-byzantine style replacing smaller churches that were standing here since the medieval era probably the first one during the 10th century.
In 1925 communist rebels tried to kill Tsar Boris III by placing a bomb during a funeral, the Tsar was lucky and survived but more than 120 other people died and several others injured. The church was seriously damaged but the restoration brought it back to life, the gilt iconostasis survived from attack and just returned to the church after the restoration.
We visited on a cold Friday morning, we didn’t expect to see people inside but there were locals lighting a candle or just praying (it was the mass time) which was a big difference with the popular Alexander Nevski cathedral where we saw only tourists inside. There are some nice murals but due to the locals I couldn’t take pictures (it wasn’t allowed anyway). The church is famous for the women choir but we weren’t lucky enough to hear them.
The church is very popular for weddings. It also houses the bones of Stefan Milutin (14th century Serbian king that fought against the ottomans but also famous because he built many monasteries) that supposed to have healing power.
It’s open daily 7.00-18.00 with a small store inside selling icons.
Check the following link for some old photos of the cathedral (and the general area)
Church "Sveta Nedelya" is the cathedral of the bishopric of Sofia and is situated in the very centre of the Bulgarian capital, close to most of the government and president's buildings, the famous central Vitosha street and the Sheraton hotel. It's one of the attractions of the city of Sofia mostly because of its interesting history.
Probably the original church was built in the X century and as other temples from that time in Sofia it was with stone foundations and wooden top. As such, the church survived until the middle of XIX century.
In the early 50s of the XIX century the bishopric of Sofia decided to build a new cathedral. On May 7, 1856 began construction of a new church. It is a basilica with a length of 35.5 meters and a width of 19 meters. In the autumn of 1863 the construction of the new church was completed
On April 16, 1925 the cathedral was the scene of one of the most tragic dramas in the history of Bulgaria. The military organization of the Communist Party organized a brutal act of terrorism - an explosive device was placed in the southwestern dome of the temple. During the funeral service of the retired general Konstantin Georgiev in the temple have been present all the ministers from that time, many generals and officers, civil and political figures as well as and many citizens. King Boris III has been also expected but he arrived with a delay. Funeral service was performed personally by the Sofia Metropolitan Stefan, when a powerful explosion destroyed a large part of the roof and part of the southern temple wall. 193 people were killed, about 500 - wounded.
Unfortunately, it is not allowed to take pictures inside the church, but I recommend to all of you to go there, sit for a while and get in peace with themselves and their thoughts, it's a really spiritual experience.
Sveta Nedelya, with its huge dome, is a typical example of neo-Byzantine architecture.
There has been a church here since medieval times, although the present building dates from the mid-19th century.
In 1925, the church was almost destroyed when Communist rebels exploded a bomb during a funeral service, attended by Tsar Boris III and his cabinet ministers, killing 123 people.
You will find an icon shop inside. Prices are much better then in the Alexander Nevski Crypt Icon shop.
The church is a popular place for weddings.
Daily 07.00 - 18.00 h.
Free of charge
About half an hour
The church occupies a site that churches have stood on since the 10th century. Inside the church are the bones of Stefan Urosh II Milutin, a 14th century Serbian ruler who defeated the Bulgarian emperor, Mihail Shishman. These are believed to have healing powers and are kept in a casket by the iconostasis.
The church was rebuilt between 1856-1863, but it was badly damaged in 1925 when bombs exploded during a funeral attended by the Bulgarian royal family. They survived but over 100 mourners were killed. Now restored once again and as the seat of the bishops of Sofia, the church has cathedral status.
The church was built at the end of the 19th century, but is a successor of several smaller churches from the Medieval times. It lies directly above the crossroads of ancient Serdica. It was mostly destroyed from an assasination bomb blast in 1925.
This grand church was built between 1856 and 1863 and has a bloody history.
In 1925 communists tried to assasinate Tar Boris III. and set of a bomb inside the church. 123 people died in the bombing, many more were injured, but the Tsar remained unharmed.
The church has beautiful mural and is open daily from 7am to 6pm.
Sv. Nedelja is the main Bulgarian Orthodox Church near the government buildings in the centre of the city. The church itself is not nearly as spectacular as is the Alexander Nevsky Cathedral, but the interior features some very beautiful icons and paintings that should not be missed. The best time to go to see the church is early in the morning, say around 8:30 or so, when they sing mass. Everyone who comes to Bulgaria has heard of the famous women's choirs, a very unique characteristic of the Exarchate churches. Sveta Nedelja has a women's choir who sing at morning mass and it is an incredibly beautiful experience to be able to hear the women in their natural setting (rather than a concert hall). Be respectful of the fact that this is not a concert but a part of the Mass and that most people in the church will in fact be worshippers rather than tourists. No admission is charged so it is best to pay for a candle or two, which can be purchased near the entrance. Don't try to sneak in a few shots with your camera: there is a fully armed security guard at the entrance and I don't think he would take kindly to intruders.
This neo-Byzantine church was built between 1856 and 1863. Unfortunately, it was badly damaged in 1925 by a bomb attack, organized by the Communists. The bomb was aimed at Tzar BorisIII and some ministers, attending a funeral ceremony at the church. The tzar survived but 123 people were killed. The tzar supported the Nazis, and drove us into another war...
The church was rebuilt and now stands right next to the Sheraton hotel, at the square in between Maria Louiza and Vitoshka streets.
The Church of St. Nedelya was built between 1856 and 1863 upon remains of the Roman town of Serdica.
The present building was reconstructed after 1925, when it was almost completely destroyed by a bomb explosion.
Opening hours: 7-18h
The St Nedelya Church is located in front of Sheraton hotel. The church is built over an Antique public building, located under St Nedelya Square dating from the period of the Sredets fortress. It preserves the relics of the Serbian King Stephan Milutin known aswell as the "Holy King" . The relics are 687 years old - a gold decorated heavy king's robe from the middle ages is laying in the sarcophage. If you are lucky ,you might see it when the coffin is open. He is known to help the ill , and suffering. Say a prayer to the Holy King, he might hear you.
The serbian king Stefan Milutin , was raised to the throne in 1275 and reigned 42 years.
It was the time the Turkish troups were marching towards the Balkans and he fought them on several occasions along with the Byzantine army. As if he knew what would happen ,he build churches in Jerusalem , Tzarigrad , and Solun - Thessaloniki and a tavern in Jerusalem for the Slavic pilgrims. The whole territory of Serbia he covered with churches and monasteries,the biggest and most beautiful among which were in Gratchanitza (close to Pristina / Jugoslavia ) and the Banski monastery "St Stephan".
The king was very religious himself ,he helped the monasteries with money and all that he could , to help them become spritual and educational centers.
On the 16 April 1925 , a group of communists blew this church in an attempt to murder Tzar Boris III. This act of terrorism took the life of many innocent people.
St Nedelya, located between the Sheraton and the Happy bar 'n grill is yet another russian church of which you get accustomed to its unique & well pronounced style.
The inside is rather dark due to small windows.
Vitosha mountain serves as a nice background.
We continued to the bar as we were not invited to the wedding's reception
This very big cathedral is in the center of Sofia. It was built between 1856 and 1863. Anyway, it was almost destroyed by bombs of communists. After that, this building is rebuilt.
Inside this cathedral there are many icons, it is well-lit.
It is very good place to know what the Orthodox Christianity is. You would feel the diffrent air from Catholic or Protestant ones.
The Sveta Nedelya church is located in the middle of Sveta Nedelya square. This is the former cathedral of Sofia. It was built in 1864 after a fire destroyed the old church that was there in 1856. Inside, the church is beautiful with all the wall paintings, the chandelliers, and the icons.
"Sveta Nedelia" is Orthodox church in Sofia. It was damaged by fire in 1856, later it was damaged again in an outrage. Nowadays the church is restored.
Thise is St. Nedelya church It used to be called St.Kral. In 1925 it was blown up by those comunist terrorists. The blast destroyed the church, but it has been rebuild and renamed to St. Nedelya..