The Temple of St. George in the village of Alba
Churches, katolik churches, сathedral, monasteries
Alba is a village of Ivatsevichi district which was situated eastward from the district center and forming a part of the Kvasevichi town council.
The location has been known since the XVII century. And despite the fact that today it is a small village, an architectural monument of the end of the XVIII century – the Temple of St. George.
Originally the temple erected in 1790 was Catholic and had features of Gothic and Renaissance. In 1904, the temple was rebuilt and changed its original appearance.
Today it is an Orthodox temple made of wood on the brick foundation. The temple is rectangular in its shape and has three log-houses covered in horizontal boards. The catholicon with arch ceiling has a quadrangular two-tiered belfry annexed to it in the early XX century; it is built into the catholicon to half width. The belfry is crowned with a six-sided onion dome. At the other side, the temple has a five-sided apse which is also domed. The catholicon and apse are overarched with a tented roof. The roof has hipped ends above the altar. The window openings are archwise.
The choir lofts have an intricate shaped aperture opening them to the catholicon of the temple. Inside the temple, in front of the altar, there are a carved baroque iconostasis and royal gates. Icons kept in the temple were painted in the late XX century.
It is asymmetrical in its architectural appearance, and the absence of special decorative fixtures in the exterior of the building makes the temple rather simple and strict.
The temple is situated on the brink of the Ruzhanskaya Puscha that presents a reserve of nationwide significance, connecting two important tourist sites – Ruzhany and Kosovo. The temple is included in a number of tourist routes thanks to such favorable location. It can appear more attractive for those who are interested in the religious heritage of Ivatsevichi district in particular and Belorussia in general.
The temple was severely damaged during the First World War. During the period 1964-1989, the temple was closed, and worship services were not held there.
There is an ancient cemetery near the temple. The priest John Anionov-Devitsky was buried there in 1902; he served in the temple in his life time. At the beginning of the First World War, German soldiers were buried near the temple, they were exhumed and brought to Germany in the 1930-s.
The temple in the village of Alba, situated on its brink near the location Iodchiki, got its name after the patron of warriors, herdsmen and farmers – St. George who lived in the III century. The worship of the Saint has become popular since the reign of prince Yaroslav the Wise In Russia; another variant of his name is more widely spread – Yury, the feast days are so-called Yuryev days are 23 April and 26 November (spring and autumn Yuryev days).