St. Elizabeth's Monastery: its history and deeds

St. Elizabeth's Monastery: its history and deeds

18.12.2020 Minsk

History of the monastery`s construction

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The city's only active monastery in Belarus appeared on the outskirts of Minsk relatively recently -  some 20 years ago. The place was new. Before that there was not even a church there. On the other hand, there was a great need among locals for a monastery where they could come to pray. And the Republican Clinical Psychiatric Hospital located nearby also needed help. The nurses had begun caring for patients with special mental needs a little earlier, in the early 90s, so the creation of an Orthodox monastery was predetermined from above. At St Elizabeth's Monastery, it is said that the first two nuns who settled in the monastery saw a sign in the sky and took it as a blessing for further construction of the monastery.

They decided to name the monastery after Martyr Saint Elizabeth, Sister of Empress Alexandra Romanova, who is known to have led ascetic life. The Grand Duchess looked after the seriously ill and worked in the monastery along with her sisters. She visited the slums of Moscow and rescued children from poverty and imminent death. In 1918, Elizaveta Fyodorovna shared the fate of the Romanov family - she was thrown into a mine alive by Bolsheviks, where she died martyrly. She was 53 years old. And in 1992 Elizaveta Fyodorovna was canonised.

Peaceable things

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The St Elizabeth's Monastery in a sense continues her work - helping not only children and adults with special mental needs, but also people who have just got out of prison and do not know where to go, who have no roof over their heads. They also resque those who have firmly decided to get rid of alcohol and drug addiction. There are more than twenty workshops at St Elizabeth's Monastery, where clothing, religious items and souvenirs for tourists are produced. Here you can taste the monastery's pastries and many other treats. Everything is made from organic products grown in the courtyard.

Today, the monastery unites eight churches. First there was a lower monastery church built in honour of St Nicholas the Wonderworker. Then a church in honour of Elizabeth Fyodorovna, the spiritual intercessor. A large bell tower is attached to St. Elizabeth's Church, which can be clearly seen from the road; it is a kind of benchmark for believers. There is also a refectory of the monastery and ornamental buildings, where nuns live. The monastery also includes a church in the psycho-neurological boarding school itself, a temple in the Northern Cemetery, a church in honour of the icon of the Mother of God "Derzhavnaya" (in its crypt there is a church in honour of the Royal Passion Bearers), a church "The Unequenchable Bowl" and a church of Nektary Oginsky.

Visit to the monastery

St Elizabeth's Monastery is young and its construction is still under way, but it has already earned fame as one of the important centres of Orthodoxy in Belarus. It is important to visit the monastery both for those who believe and those who have doubts. Those who feel anxious in their hearts. The very peaceful atmosphere of St Elizabeth's Monastery and the garden, which is lovingly cared for by the sisters, invites you to relax and reflect. If you spend at least a few hours here, you will certainly be able to solve many of your life's problems and gain new strength to deal with them. And if you feel that you need more time to get away from the hustle and bustle of the big city, you can stay at St Elizabeth's Monastery for a longer period of time. There is even a special pilgrimage service to help the faithful.

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