“The saints are not touched”: what will happen to the Kiev Lavra

"Святых не тронут": что ждет Киевскую лавру

© RIA Novosti / stringer
The Russian Orthodox Church remembers on Saturday the legendary devotees of the Kiev-Pechersk Lavra, including the founder of Russian monasticism St. Anthony. The threat of Ukrainian nationalists to capture the monastery with the relics of saints under the new President Vladimir Zelensky suddenly stopped. Whether the danger to the monastery, in the opinion of the clergy and faithful, and what today can teach people the monk of the Kiev – in the material RIA Novosti.

Easter of the dead

The Foundation of the Kiev-Pechersk monastery called the year 1051, when, in the opinion of most researchers, the venerable Anthony settled in one of the Varangian caves on the banks of the Dnieper. Later, the monk Anthony was joined by the monk Theodosius. Both saints are considered the ancestors of all Russian monastic asceticism. In the Near (antonievich) caves of Kiev-Pechersk Lavra there are the relics of 73 Orthodox ascetics, and in the Far (Feodosievich) – 48 saints.The entire Russian Orthodox Church, including its self-governing part of the Ukrainian Church celebrates the Cathedral of the venerable fathers of the Kiev-Pechersk in the farther caves on 12 October. It is the saints who labored mostly in the XIII–XV centuries. Their relics are in wood or metal cancers, as well as “gates” – the ancient burial niches. In some cancers left uncovered hands of the saints, clearly showing the decay.According to Church tradition, once a monk Dionysios, going on Easter in the cave, cried: “Christ is risen!” And the answer came from an underground cavern, where rested the relics: “Truly he is risen!” Later himself Dionysius was laid to rest in the Nearer caves.Since then, Laurel has been through a lot. Some of the most severe trials fell to the end of the twentieth century.

"Святых не тронут": что ждет Киевскую лавру

The “dashing nineties”

Immediately after the proclamation of Ukraine’s independence clashes at the monastery are becoming commonplace. Armed with rods and batons, the nationalists, shouting “beat the Muscovites!” rush to the pious old women and skinny novices in cassocks. For believers to stand up OMON fighters. Dozens of wounded and only a miracle no one died. But the overall forces of the Orthodox Shrine still manages to defend. However, the conflict goes to the “frozen stage”. And once again, it escalates after the arrival to power of President Petro Poroshenko in 2014.In 2018, the vicar of the monastery Metropolitan of Vyshgorod and Chernobyl Paul writes an appeal to Youtube, telling about threats of seizure of Kiev shrines. “Now there are threats that they will again capture the shrines, so-called centers of Moscow. Why Moscow and not of Christ? Do we here in Moscow?” he says, addressing the faithful.On the website of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine appear to be successfully petitioned to take away from the Lavra of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church (UOC). And around the monastery are increasingly staffed by armed security forces.However, a year later the power in the country is changing. The new President Vladimir Zelensky pinning a lot of hopes: the long-awaited truce in Eastern Ukraine, the implementation of “Minsk agreements” and the cessation of the persecution of believers of the canonical Church. At the same time decreasing and constant appeals to “protect the cradle of Russian Orthodoxy” in Orthodox public pages and groups in social networks.What is it – a brief respite or the beginning of “new times”?

The ideal of Holiness

“To begin with, something to steal or something to do with the Kiev-Pechersk saints not. It’s ridiculous, because for all denominations and religious structures in the country, the monastery – Shrine. There are disputes over the possession of the monastery, but the Ukrainian legal authorities are still on the side of the canonical Church. In General, the situation is this: at one point the threats became more or they become more aggressive and specific actions of how times smaller. When was Poroshenko, who supported the creation of the DNC, they could count on the support of the state. And now the government Zelensky at least indifferent to Church disputes,” says the cleric Mogilev-Podolsk diocese of the canonical Ukrainian Church, the priest IBAS, instead (of Senchukov). Today father IBAS, instead he lives in Moscow, but it often happens in Ukraine..According to him, some disaster with the “capture the laurels” today should not wait.”But even if we suppose such – well, there was the Pochaev Lavra in the hands of the Greek Catholics (the second largest after the Kiev-Pechersk monastery in the country from 1713 to 1831 was in the hands of the Polish Uniates – ed.)! And nothing, its Holiness is not lost,” said the priest.With the Kiev Lavra of the monk connected with a special history – it was here that he decided on your vows. And it was here that the asceticism of the monk Mercurius the faster, the day on which was born the father of the IBAS, instead.”This is my favorite Saint. About him almost nothing is known except that he was Holy, has lived his entire life in the same cell with the other fellow, never quarreled, and even they lie together in the same cancer. God grant that we all reach a Holiness that no one would sit and read what we did there, and just know that we are made Holy” – smiling father.

The forecast is positive

That Lavra will not happen anything bad, I’m sure the author of scientific works about separatist movements in Ukrainian Orthodoxy, the acting rector of the Church of the Holy Trinity on Alexis, Archpriest Rostislav Yarema. “I doubt that it will happen. I hope that the blessed virgin Mary, the saints, the founders of the monastery Reverend Anthony and Theodosius would not allow the desecration. If they did not allow the capture of the monastery, when they were in power Poroshenko and his entourage, now that moreover, I hope will not happen,” – says the priest.He believes that sooner or later, for the parishioners of the canonical Ukrainian Church will come “a quiet life”. And also recalls the historical period when the Greek-Catholics managed to capture the Pochaev Lavra. “It’s all over. We must survive this period, and there will be quiet times, when everyone will be able, as before, to come to Kiev to pray. Things will get better, and Kievan Rus will prosper,” says the father Rostislav.Alexey Mikheev

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