Holy Dormition Svyatogorsk Lavra, Svyatogіrs'k


Coordinates: 49.0284845, 37.5673842
Type of place: Scenic Spots, Caves\Dungeons\Underground, Unique places, Religious
Official Website: http://svlavra.church.ua/
Holy Dormition Svyatogorsk Lavra, Svyatogіrs'k Holy Dormition Svyatogorsk Lavra, Svyatogіrs'k Holy Dormition Svyatogorsk Lavra, Svyatogіrs'k Holy Dormition Svyatogorsk Lavra, Svyatogіrs'k Holy Dormition Svyatogorsk Lavra, Svyatogіrs'k Holy Dormition Svyatogorsk Lavra, Svyatogіrs'k Holy Dormition Svyatogorsk Lavra, Svyatogіrs'k Holy Dormition Svyatogorsk Lavra, Svyatogіrs'k Holy Dormition Svyatogorsk Lavra, Svyatogіrs'k Holy Dormition Svyatogorsk Lavra, Svyatogіrs'k Holy Dormition Svyatogorsk Lavra, Svyatogіrs'k Holy Dormition Svyatogorsk Lavra, Svyatogіrs'k Holy Dormition Svyatogorsk Lavra, Svyatogіrs'k
 
The church complex is located on a coastal hill of the Seversky Donets river. Framed by chalk cliffs that look like the wings of a swan, the white buildings are crowned with gilded domes. This is the first impression of the Sviatohirsk Lavra(*), which is visited by thousands of pilgrims and travelers with each passing year. They all come looking for answers to the many secrets hidden behind the walls of this monastery. And the unknown is ever-present here, starting from the creation of this holy place. There are three versions of the possible origins, none of which is documentally proved yet.

Mikhail Fedorovich Romanov (1596-1645) documented the existence of the Holy Uspensk Monastery for the first time in a letter dated by the year 1624, which provided yearly financial and material help to the Monastery, as it was the center of Orthodox religion and a guard point on the southern borders of the kingdom. Since the territory had a great value as a place of defense, it was occupied by the military garrison up to the XVIII century. Indeed, the first foundations of the monastery (the church of St. Anthony located on the rocks and Theodosius of the Pechersk and St. Nikolay's church on the top of the mountain), being high above the river level, were protected by impressive walls, and its buildings were connected by cave passages, home to some of the rooms that had religious and residential purposes.

During the XVIII century Sviatohirsk Monastery is passed as inheritance, at the will of Catherine II (1729 - 1796). Thus, the religious monument turns into a secular residence of Grigory Potemkin, who at the time already owned thirty thousand hectares of land with more than two thousand serfs.

In the years 1922-1992 the monastery continued to exist in the period of the Soviet occupation as a recreation center, with a cinema and dining room located in the church buildings.
 
Eleven years later, the city born because of the abode, gets a proper name - Sviatohirsk, and a year later, in 2004, the monastery is given the status of a Lavra.
The territory of the Lavra’s buildings is located on the right bank of the Seversky Donets river. It starts with the statue of the Virgin (2004), by Ukrainian sculptor Mykola Havrylovych Shmat’ko (1943 -) with two stones made of Ural marble weighing 40 tons.

On the territory there is also a monumental Soviet sculpture to the revolutionary Artem (1927), from which one can admire a very beautiful panoramic view of the Lavra and the river’s chalk cliffs.

Also, there are two interesting places worth visiting inside of the Lavra: a wooden church and the caves of the monastery.

Lavra is a type of monastery consisting of a cluster of cells or caves for the hermits, with a church and sometimes a refectory at the center. It is erected within the Orthodox and other Eastern Christian traditions.

Translation by: Marina Ponomaryova
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