Sretensky Monastery (Moscow)

A monastery in Moscow, founded by Grand Prince Vasili I in 1397

Cathedral of Sretensky Monastery in Moscow
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It used to be located close to the present-day Red Square, but in the early 16th century it was moved northeast to what is now Bolshaya Lubyanka Street.

The Sretensky Monastery gave its name to adjacent streets and byways, namely Sretenka Street, Sretensky Boulevard, Sretensky Lane, Sretensky Deadend, and Sretensky Gates Square.

History

Unlike most other Russian Orthodox churches of the same name the monastery is not, as might be expected, named after one of the twelve Great Feasts of Russian Orthodox Church Sretenie Gospodne (Presentation of Our Lord in the Temple), with Sretenie being a Church Slavonic word for «meeting».

View of the monastery from Lubyanka Street in 1882
pinterest button View of the monastery from Lubyanka Street in 1882 N. A. Naydenov, Public Domain

The origin of the monastery's name comes from the fact that it was built on the spot where the muscovites and the ruling Prince had met the icon of Our Lady of Vladimir on August 26, 1395, moved from Vladimir to Moscow to protect the capital from the imminent invasion of Tamerlane. Soon thereafter, the armies of Tamerlane retreated and the grateful monarch founded the monastery to commemorate the miracle.

In 1552, the Muscovites gathered at the walls of the monastery to meet the Russian army returning after the conquest of Kazan.

Sretensky Monastery in Moscow
pinterest button Sretensky Monastery in Moscow KNewman, GNU 1.2

In 1925, the monastery was closed down. In 1928—1930, most of its buildings were dismantled by the Soviets, including the Church of Mary of Egypt (14th-16th century) and Church of Saint Nicholas (16th century).

Vladimir Icon of the Mother of God
pinterest button Vladimir Icon of the Mother of God Дмитриева Ирина, CC BY-SA 4.0

Only the Cathedral of the Meeting of the Icon of Our Lady of Vladimir with a side chapel to the Nativity of John the Forerunner (built in 1679 by the order of tsar Fyodor Alexeyevich) survived to this day.

Sretensky Monastery, the Cathedral of the Presentation of the Vladimir Icon of the Mother of God, the Holy Gates
pinterest button Sretensky Monastery, the Cathedral of the Presentation of the Vladimir Icon of the Mother of God, the Holy Gates Дмитриева Ирина, CC BY-SA 4.0

Services in the Vladimirsky Cathedral resumed in 1991.

The cathedral was transferred to the authority of the Pskovo-Pechorsky Monastery in 1994, but nowadays it is a separate monastic establishment, with Patriarch Alexy II as its archimandrite.

Useful Information

Sretensky Monastery
Russian: Сретенский монастырь

Admission

free

Opening hours

  • 8:00–20:00

Contacts

19 Bolshaya Lubyanks, Moscow

☎ (495) 623-34-44
monastery@pravoslavie.ru
www.pravoslavie.ru (Russian)

How to get

Metro stations: Turgenevskaya, Chistye Prudy, Lubyanka, Kuzntsky Most

2013 Controversy

On 13 November, a Moscow city committee that oversees construction on heritage sites approved the construction of a new cathedral on the grounds of the Sretensky Monastery.

The cathedral is due to be completed by 2017, in time for the 100th anniversary of the October Revolution when attacks on the Russian Orthodox Church began.

Architectural preservationists fear that the plans will destroy other historic buildings on the site, irrevocably alter the surrounding cityscape.