The Cathedral of Christ the Saviour is a cathedral in Moscow, Russia, on the northern bank of the Moskva River, a few blocks southwest of the Kremlin. With an overall height of 103 metres (338 ft), it is the tallest Orthodox Christian church in the world.
When Napoleon Bonaparte retreated from Moscow, Emperor Alexander I signed a manifest, 25 December 1812, declaring his intention to build a cathedral in honor of Christ the Saviour "to signify Our gratitude to Divine Providence for saving Russia from the doom that overshadowed Her" and as a memorial to the sacrifices of the Russian people.
It took some time for actual work on the projected cathedral to get started. The first finished architectural project, by Aleksandr Lavrentyevich Vitberg, was endorsed by Alexander I in 1817. It was a flamboyant Neoclassical design full of Freemasonic symbolism. Construction work was begun on the Sparrow Hills, the highest point in Moscow, but the site proved insecure.
This Church was built and then destroyed by the Communists under Stalin, and then , finally rebuilt. In February 1990, the Russian Orthodox Church received permission from the Soviet Government to rebuild the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour. A temporary cornerstone was laid by the end of the year. The restorer Aleksey Denisov was called upon to design a replica of extraordinary accuracy.
The first Russian President Boris Yeltsin, who died of heart failure on 23 April 2007, lay in state in the cathedral prior to his burial in Novodevichy Cemetery.