Fedor Konyukhov

On October 15th, 2011, at one of the most beautiful places on Cyprus Island, the bay of Cape Greco, arrived a magnificent barquentine “Running on Waves,” with a specific and extraordinary mission.  The expedition “Sources of Europe,” was to sail around Europe to conduct research on the ancient cities of Europe; their locations, archeology and probable reasons of decline or disappearance.  During the expedition, which started on August 23th, 2011 from the German port Bremenhaven, the barquentina stopped at 18 ports on 9 different European countries.  Upon reaching the Island of Cyprus, the final destination of the expedition, an orthodox cross was lowered in the sea and secured to the bottom of Cape Greco bay.  The placement of the cross was to commemorate the completion of the journey. The plaque on the cross carries a message in three languages, Greek, Russian and English: “This cross has been laid by priest Fedor Konyukhov in commemoration of the successful completion of research expedition “Sources of Europe” commenced from port Bremenhaven, Germany and ended at the port of Larnaca, Cyprus on the barquentine “Running on Waves.” 

According to the Russian Orthodox Church custom, any time there is a need or desire to place an orthodox cross, anywhere in the world, or in this case, 15 meters under the sea, a Russian orthodox priest has to be present to consecrate such cross.  Fedor Konyukhov was invited by the organizers of this expedition and the owners of the “Running on Waves” to perform all the necessary steps of consecration of the cross at the very beginning of the trip and then, two months later, he flew in to Larnaca, Cyprus to be present at the submergence of the cross to sanctify this event. To bring and secure the cross to the bottom of the sea, 50 divers were recruited to participate in the event.  Fedor spent a week training for the dive which brought good memories from his past when he was a young student at a soviet nautical school.  On the day of the event, the mayor of Larnaca, the Island’s Archbishop and other officials of the Island were welcomed onboard of the barquentine.

It’s interesting to mention that according to the Russian Orthodox Church calendar, October 15th is the day of the Russian Admiral, St. Fedor Ushakov.  He was canonized in 2004 as the holly warrior, but long before that he was considered to be a patron saint of the Russian Navy.  The Admiral is known and remembered on the Island largely due to the fact that his victorious sea-campaigns against the Ottoman Empire during the second Russo-Turkish War were emancipatory for Cyprus.

The official sponsor of the expedition and owner of the barquentine is “88 Parsec LTD”

Project manager Leonid Gavrilov

Additional information on the expedition http://www.ngoclub.org/