Founded in 1988, Saint Philaret’s Christian Orthodox Institute (SFI) was the first independent theology school in Soviet Russia.
The Institute is licensed by the Federal education and science supervision authority, the Department for religious education and catechesis of the Moscow patriarchate, and holds a Government accreditation certificate.
SFI offers a bachelor’s degree in Theology along with foundation and advanced professional training programmes in Theology, Religious Studies and the Foundations of Orthodox Culture.
Each year, the institute welcomes over 500 students.
Academic research at SFI is focused on a number of priority areas. Issues of modern day mission and catechesis are at the centre of the Institute's research focus. The Department of Theology and Liturgical Studies has been working on translating Orthodox liturgical texts into Russian. SFI’s church history research focuses on the late 19th century and early 20th century Orthodox communities and brotherhoods, along with understanding the experience and the legacy left behind by the New Martyrs and Confessors of Russia. The Institute’s research in contemporary theology is centred around issues in anthropology and ecclesiology.
The above areas of research are explored by the Institute’s research teams and senior lecturers, discussed at annual conferences and seminars, and examined by students as part of their course and final degree work.