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20 Sep 2019

Patriarch Kirill invited to attend Zhirovichi Monastery anniversary celebrations in Belarus Society

Patriarch Kirill invited to attend Zhirovichi Monastery anniversary celebrations in Belarus Society
Patriarch Kirill. Archive photo

MINSK, 20 September (BelTA) – Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia Kirill has been invited to attend the celebrations timed to the 550th anniversary of the Zhirovichi Icon of the Mother of God and the 500th anniversary of the founding of the Holy Dormition Stavropegic Zhirovichi Monastery which will be held in May 2020, Belarus' Commissioner for Religions and Nationalities Leonid Gulyako said at a meeting of the national organizing committee for the anniversaries, BelTA has learned.

The draft program of the events includes a session of the Holy Synod of the Russian Orthodox Church (ROC) which will bring together the ROC hierarchs from various countries. “Taking into account the significance of the upcoming celebrations, we expect the events to draw a large audience, including figures of culture, foreign guests, clergy and believers,” Leonid Gulyako noted. “In the run-up to the anniversary celebrations from March till May, Minsk, oblast capitals and other cities will host scientific conferences, exhibitions, film festivals, roundtables, literary readings, and festivals. We will also arrange excursions for tourists,” he added.

Plans are in place to create series a TV and radio programs dedicated to the history of the Orthodox Christianity and its role in the life of the society and provide media coverage of the upcoming events.

Moreover, Zhirovichi will unveil a monument to Reverend Seraphim of Zhirovichi. The monument will consist of a granite pedestal and a bronze figure of the martyr. A dedication ceremony of a special stamp celebrating the anniversaries will also be part of the events. The draft program of the events consists of three sections. The first includes preparations for the celebrations from March till May, the second and third sections include secular and church events timed to the anniversaries.

The Holy Dormition Zhirovichi Monastery is one of the main centers of the Orthodox Church in Belarus and one of the largest architectural ensembles of the 17th - 18th centuries in the country. The monastery includes four churches and other buildings: the Apparition Church, the Church of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, the Holy Assumption Church, a bell tower and the winter Church of St. Nicholas the Wonderworker, the Church of Saint George, a seminary, residential buildings, a refectory, outbuildings, and a garden.

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