Sunday, October 01, 2006

In Alaska, a Tradition of Russian Faith
Those who brought the Orthodox church here are long gone, but the diocese is thriving.
By Sam Howe Verhovek, Times Staff Writer
October 1, 2006

TATITLEK, Alaska — Steve Totemoff keeps faith alive in this tiny Alaskan village — the Russian Orthodox faith.Totemoff, a native Aleut, keeps the faith when he caulks, paints, or replaces the wood of St. Nicholas Russian Orthodox church after it is cracked by ice heaves or pulverized by the driving, salty, sleet-filled winds that come in from Prince William Sound.

Because of the work he and other Aleuts do, the 100-year-old church still stands.

Its three onion domes, each painted robin's-egg blue and topped by the three-bar Orthodox cross, grace the simple wooden building that looms above the steel-gray harbor in Tatitlek and sets off the misty green stretches of spruce trees with its own vivid burst of color.
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