A Russian Christmas Eve somewhat different

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We are in January, the 6th, on Christmas Eve for the Russian Orthodox remained true to the Julian calendar. In 2012, the celebration is of a somewhat different tenor from the previous years. The Arab spring has resonated in the Russian land. The Moscow Patriarchate has gone out of its way to warn the Russian government to hear rumblings of popular discontent raised by the announcement of the disputed parliamentary elections results in December. Several thousands of kilometers away, the Russian Orthodox Church outside border, reunited with the Patriarchate of Moscow since 2007, gears up to host the festivities. Nine thirty in the evening: the Church of the Three Holy Hierarchs discreetly nestled between two buildings of the 15th arrondissement of Paris opens its doors to the crowdy Russian diaspora. Family are praying before the icons dotting the confined space of the parish. A few minutes later the four walls of the church entirely lined with icons echoe to the sound of the orthodox Slavonic chants. The Bishop of Chersonese Nestor, responsible for the administration of the communities of the Moscow Patriarchate in France, Switzerland, Spain and Portugal, punctuates with his homilies the captivating polyphonic choirs. The year 2011 in the world is called in Russian "a single year" by the bishop. At two o'clock in the morning, after standing more than four hours to pray, Russian families are gradually leaving the church.

A story photo composed during the night of 6 to 7 January 2012.