SOSNOVKA, Russia (AP) — A village in Siberia that did not have a church until this winter is getting a lesson in faith and life's ephemeral nature.
Sosnovka resident Alexander Batyokhtin spent nearly two months building a village church entirely out of snow. The structure will vanish with the season.
Batyokhtin worked on the chapel every day, even when temperatures plunged below minus 30 degrees Celsius (-22 Fahrenheit.) He used 12 cubic metres (424 cubic feet) of snow to make it.
Batyokhtin says the work wasn't difficult. His biggest challenges were fashioning the altar and a cross for the roof.
"The main thing is to say a prayer and keep a fast for some time, then just go and do it," he says.
Sosnovka administrator Yuriy Kirsh says the church "means a lot to our hearts and souls" despite being temporary.