Pilgrimage to the Trinity Lavra of St. Sergius

Sergiev Posad Travel Blog

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Domes of the Lavra

I have been to this place many many times. It is a unique place: if you are a tourist interested in Russian medieval art • go there, if you are a pilgrim in search of inner balance • fo there too. I went there for both.

 

This time the purpose of my visit was the second, I think. I was geeting ready to go clubbing with my friends and was happy about it and I suddenly felt I need to go to this place again. No, it has nothing to do with Ivan the Terrible way of life • “first sin, than repent”, no I just felt I needed a kind of relief. So on Sunday morning I woke up (yes, it was still morning after a club night) and went to Sergiev Posad. It takes about 1 h 30 minutes to get there from Moscow, an easy destiantion.

 

I took off the train and headed to the Lavra.

Holy Trinity Lavra
On the way to it there is a point from which you can enjoy the magnificent view of the whole monastery. I always stop here for a while and I did it this time as well and took a picture.

 

Then I went downhills and passed St. Paraskeva’s church, went uphills and reached the entrance to the Lavra. Many people • tourists, pilgrims, beggars were on the square infront of it. Lavra is always a busy place and you can meet here all kind of people, it is very representative of the human world.

 

I entered, took some pictures and decided not to waste my time but to go to the Holy Trinity Cathedral directly.  It was the right thing to do. I saw a long long line and just thought “Oh”.

Dogs sleeping in front of the Lavra
People were staying in line to touch the relics of Saint Sergius of Radonezh, one of the greatest and most venerated Orthodox saints who founded the monastery in 1345. It was the puspose of my trip so I didn’t hesitate to wait. It took me 3 hours to go through but I never regret. It is good sometimes not to be in a hurry but to stop and think about your life. That is what I did in those 3 hours.

 

A line in a monastery is a unique thing • you can learn more in a couple of hours than in many years, it is a kind of discussion club if we can call it like this. I heard many life stories: it is interesting how people are willing to share important things with strangers. Every person in the line had his or her own reason to be there but in general they all had a question, a request or a problem to be solved. I was listening to what people were saying and thought that I am a pretty happy person. A good outcome of the trip I should say.

 

After my visit to the Trinity Cathedral and the Saint Sergius’ relics I went and bought one more bell for my mom (she is collecting them) and took some pics.

Entrance to the monastery
 It was just the time to go back to Moscow but I was hungry and had some nice meagre pastry and some monastery kvass (traditional Russian beverage). I was seating on the grass with my late lunch enjoying a warm summer evening and watching people leaving the monastery. I was tired but happy. It was a feeeling as if I had done something important.

 

I didn’t write anything about the Sacristy, the Lavra museum, which is great by the way, or Andrey Rublev’s art • you can read about it in many books and Internet resources but better to see. What I wanted to share with you is my feelings and impressions from a single visit to the most important Russian monastery.

 

Marinushka says:
Thanks Mike:)
Yes, you are right, this is on the way to Yaroslavl (1 h 30 min from Yaroslavsky station). A highly recommended destination.
Posted on: Aug 31, 2008
mpmurph133 says:
This is on the way to Yaroslavl right? Is this the main seat for the Russian Orthodox Patriarch, or am I thinking of something else? Good writing, btw1
Posted on: Aug 29, 2008
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Domes of the Lavra
Domes of the Lavra
Holy Trinity Lavra
Holy Trinity Lavra
Dogs sleeping in front of the Lavra
Dogs sleeping in front of the Lavra
Entrance to the monastery
Entrance to the monastery
People feeding pigeons at the Lavr…
People feeding pigeons at the Lav…
The main entrance
The main entrance
Inside the Lavra. Holy Trinity Cat…
Inside the Lavra. Holy Trinity Ca…
Holy Trinity Cathedral
Holy Trinity Cathedral
People staying in line for St. Ser…
People staying in line for St. Se…
Assumption Cathedral
Assumption Cathedral
Holy Spirit Church
Holy Spirit Church
Inside the Lavra
Inside the Lavra
The Belltower
The Belltower
Assumption Cathedral
Assumption Cathedral
Trinity Cathedrals Dome
Trinity Cathedral's Dome
Godunovs Tomb
Godunovs' Tomb
Seminary
Seminary
Domes of Assumption Cathedral
Domes of Assumption Cathedral
Gateway Church
Gateway Church
Gateway
Gateway
Gateway
Gateway
Gateway to the Lavra
Gateway to the Lavra
Monument to St. Sergius
Monument to St. Sergius
Railway station. Monument to Savva…
Railway station. Monument to Savv…
Sergiev Posad
photo by: Martin_Austria