The Braslav district is a unique area in Belarus that is rich in the historical and cultural heritage. The Holy Assumption Temple that is situated in the center of the town Braslav of the Vitebsk region was constructed in 1897. The townsmen were searching a suitable place for the construction for a long time, but after much arguing, it was agreed that it should be built near Zamkovaya Mountain, the most outstanding and famous place in the town.
According to historical records, the first Orthodox temple in honor of St Varvara in Braslav was constructed on the same site in the XVI century, and not far away from it there stood a convent. They were established by Princess Alyona, the wife of the prince of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania and Poland Alexander. However, life made some corrections: during the fire of 1859 all structures on Zamkovaya Mountain were destroyed. Now it has the same appearance as after the fire.
People lacked a temple, so it was agreed to build a small wooden temple. A short time later it was rebuild in the cemetery, and the construction of the Holy Assumption Temple was started on the former place; the new temple was made of stone, and it still functions. It stood out from the town streets for its exterior and light blue color.
The temple was designed in the then popular style – Old Russian; and it is recognized as an architectural monument. The central arch-shaped entry is located under the belfry that makes it look very nice. The whole temple is ornamented along its perimeter with arch windows and lateral entries.
Upon entering the temple, one feels an incredible peace, calm and joy. The interior at first sight seems to be rather simple: the walls are painted in green color; there are stencils painted in white and blue here and there. But that does not attracts attention as the whole interior is distinctive for a huge three-tier carved iconostasis made of wood. It was constructed in the early XX century. The local residents say that it was made in Kiev, but there is no proof of it. Besides, in the temple there are kept unique icons, such as “Saint Nicholas”, “The Apostles”, “The Annunciation”, “Presentation of Jesus at the Temple” that was dedicated to the moment when the Infant Christ was first brought into the temple, and some others. All these icons were once brought into the Holy Assumption Temple from the closed temple in the village Druya.
The Holy Assumption Temple is a place that everyone coming to Braslav should visit. It will be of a special interest for those who are curious about the Belarusian Orthodox culture, learn architectural monuments. All guests of the temple will have time to think and reflect: perhaps, they will find a lot of answers, feel peace, favor and calm. The temple is popular not only during Orthodox holidays, but also in ordinary days. A lot of parishioners attend the temple during Sunday worship.