The Minister of Culture of the Russian Federation Olga Lyubimova signed an agreement with Patriarch Kirill (Vladimir Gundyaev) on the transfer of the icon "Trinity" by Andrei Rublev from the Tretyakov Gallery to the free use of the Holy Trinity Sergius Lavra, according to the website of the Moscow Patriarchate.
The signing of the agreement was attended by the Governor of St. Petersburg Alexander Belgov, State Secretary of the Union State of Russia and Belarus Dmitry Mezentsev, Deputy Minister of Culture of the Russian Federation Sergei Obryvalin, as well as representatives of the Russian Orthodox Church.
Patriarch Kirill called the incident a "historic event":
“The document that we signed today clearly shows that that terrible era has irrevocably gone into the past when, under the guise of confiscating church valuables, the shrines of the Russian land were confiscated and our people were deprived of the opportunity to offer up their prayers before them.”
On June 4, the icon in a glass capsule was transported to the Cathedral of Christ the Savior. It was handed over to the Russian Orthodox Church by decision of Russian President Vladimir Putin, who explained it with "numerous requests from Orthodox believers."
On May 23, an expert meeting was held at the Tretyakov Gallery, during which experts came to the conclusion that it was impossible to transfer the "Holy Trinity" to the Russian Orthodox Church due to the complex and unstable state, as well as the unpredictability of the ongoing process of negative changes. Patriarch Kirill (Vladimir Gundyaev) dismissed Archpriest Leonid Kalinin, head of the expert council of the Moscow Patriarchate on Church Art, Architecture and Restoration, who agreed with the gallery's experts, "for obstructing" the transfer of the Trinity. After that, Kalinin was hospitalized with a heart attack.
After that, Patriarch Kirill stated that the icon would stay in the Cathedral of Christ the Savior for a year, despite the fact that the Ministry of Culture reported that the "Trinity" would be in the temple until June 18, and then go for restoration.