The monastery where King Daniel prayed
Today we will lead you along the paths that King Daniel of Galich and bishops with metropolitans, European monarchs and Kiev street children, Prussian soldiers and rural schoolchildren walked along. We will visit a unique place where every patch of land on the high banks of Styr is saturated with the spirit of Ukrainian antiquity. This sacred place for Volhynians (and not only) is very close to Lutsk. It is enough to go on a bypass road and turn into Zhidychin, a modest suburban village with a rich historical past. It was here that fifteen years ago the St. Nicholas Monastery, one of the oldest monasteries in Western Ukraine, whose history dates back more than a thousand years, rose again from oblivion and ruins.
ROYAL MAJESTY OF THE ZHIDICHINSKY MONASTERY
Zhidichinsky Monastery Once Zhidichin was a city that had the Magdeburg Law, and sometimes even exceeded the ancient Lucesque in its influence. Today it is the most ordinary village where many Luchans dream of buying a tidbit of land for construction. Because the corner is really paradise. And wherever you dig – old times. She herself witnessed how seven years ago in the garden of a local resident who undertook to dig a trench for sewage, stumbled upon an old Russian stove! Volyn archaeologists did not have such a find before. The furnace was preserved in excellent condition, but it was necessary to preserve it, hiding it again in the ground so that the sun and wind would not destroy. An ancient vessel, found nearby, replenished the collection of the local museum.
For a long century, the Zhidichinsky monastery had everything: glory and greatness, fall and oblivion, and a centuries-old path from wooden cells in the wild forest to one of the influential centers of Orthodoxy. The official date of its foundation is considered the middle of the XIII century. But there is every reason to believe that the monastic brethren took a fancy to these picturesque hills around Zhidychin back in the 9th-10th centuries. It is known that King Daniel himself came to pray at the local shrines. Would he begin to visit the new little-known holy monastery, if it had no influence and status?
The abbot of the monastery, Archimandrite Konstantin (by the way, in worldly life is a journalist) confirmed this version:
– Daniil of Galitsky visited our monastery, and this is recorded in the Ipatiev Chronicle in 1227: “Ehha in Zhydichin bow and pray to St. Nicholas.” The second time he came here in 1236. From this we can make the assumption that our monastery was not founded in the XIII century, but much earlier. For the receipt of such power and influence must be preceded by a great monastic feat. And it is calculated not for years or decades, but for centuries. Therefore, I believe that the monks settled here, probably in the IX-X centuries.
Zhydichinsky monastery It turns out that this monastery could exist until 988, before the official baptism of Russia? The monastic brethren does not exclude this. Since some historical studies allow us to make such an assumption. After all, Volyn was then on the border with Europe, which at that time was already Christianizing. According to the Byzantine chronicles, the diocese of the Moravian brothers Cyril and Methodius included our region, and its borders passed along the Styr River, which flows through идydyčyn and where its old channel has still been preserved. According to legend, the first Christian preachers came to the local prince of Lutsk, but he drove them out. So they, moving further along the Styr river, and reached Zhidychina.
– Is it true that the youngest son of Bogadan Khmelnitsky Yuri lived in Zhidychyn? Allegedly, he refused hetmanism, took monastic tonsure and became Gideon, was an archimandrite here – I am interested in another rector of the Zhidchyn legend.
– I had to talk about this with many historians. They consider it a legend. There are no historical confirmations that Yuri was in Zhidychyn.
AS A STUDENT STUDENT MONASTERY SAVED
The strength and influence of Zhidychin is evidenced by the fact that in 1429, when a congress of European monarchs was held in Lutsk, some foreign guests were settled in Zhidychyn, because there was not enough room for everyone in Lutsk.
Lutsk Prince Nikolai Svyatosh, great-grandson of Yaroslav the Wise and son of Chernigov Prince David Svyatoslavovich, especially cared for the monastery. He abdicated to put an end to princely feuds, and tonsured monks. The rest of his life he spent in a monastery, buried in the Kiev Pechersk Lavra. He is revered by the Orthodox Church, and modern Jewish monks – especially (in honor of Nikola Svyatoshi they conduct “Nikolaev Readings”). The Orthodox monastery was engaged in 24 nearby villages, there was a wonderful library, a seminary, books were printed, that is, it was a center of enlightenment and education.
In the seventeenth century, in its state and significance for the Kiev Metropolitanate, the Zhidichinsky monastery was considered the second after the Kiev Pechersk Lavra, and its temple shone with silver and gilding. And this is after the complete destruction of the Orthodox shrine in the tragic year of 1496, when the Crimean Tatars led by the sons of Khan Mengli Geray broke into Volyn and destroyed the monastery with its 80 inhabitants. It was burned and destroyed by all the conquerors who…