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As Kiev was losing its political significance due to the Mongol invasion, Metropolitan Maximus moved to Vladimir in 1299; his successors, Metropolitan Peter and Theognostus, moved the residence to Moscow by the 14th century.
Princess Olga of Kiev was the first ruler of Kievan Rus to convert to Christianity, either in 945 or 957.
Undoubtedly influenced by his Christian grandmother and by a proposed marriage alliance with the Byzantine imperial family, Olga's grandson Vladimir I (c.
) is traditionally said to have been founded by the Apostle Andrew, who is thought to have visited Scythia and Greek colonies along the northern coast of the Black Sea. Andrew reached the future location of Kiev and foretold the foundation of a great Christian city.Orthodox Christian Constantinople's greatest mission outreach was to areas known as Kievan Rus that are now the states of Ukraine, Belarus, and Russia.This date is often considered the official birthday of the Russian Orthodox Church.Thus, in 1988, the Church celebrated its millennial anniversary.
There is evidence that the first Christian bishop was sent to Novgorod from Constantinople either by Patriarch Photius or Patriarch Ignatius, circa 866-867 AD.
By the mid-10th century, there was already a Christian community among Kievan nobility, under the leadership of Greek and Byzantine priests, although paganism remained the dominant religion.