In the village Koksayek (former Georgiyev), about 35 km east from Shymkent, is erected a nice small Orthodox church: the temple of the great martyr Georgi Pobedonostsa..

Orthodox temples are uncommon in villages of southern Kazakhstan, whose inhabitants are predominantly Muslim. The Georgiyeva Orthodox Church was built in 1882 thanks to the funding of parishioners. During the Soviet time, like most of religious buildings, it was closed and occupied by various institutions, before reopening in 1991 and being restored in 2002.

The temple of the great martyr Georgi is decorated with many icons and relics. Unlike many Orthodox churches, candles are available for free to visitors.

A source of holy water flows 200m from the church, which is often used for baptisms. In order to benefit from its holy and regenerative properties, it’s customary to dive in 3 times.

Photo: Gaëlle Bal
On the same topic: The ethno-museum Kyluet – The Pyramidal Mosque