Trinity Lavra of St Sergius, Sergiyev Posad
Originally Posted by Al_bina
I have to say that Sergiyev Posad exudes an air of serenity and tranquility. If memory serves me right, it is the summer residence of the Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia
(70km NE of Moscow)
Constructed between the 15th and 19th centuries.
Ivan III built a church in 1476; the Assumption Cathedral was commissioned by Ivan the Terrible in 1559; Peter I twice found refuge within the monastery from his enemies; Empress Elizabeth visited annually with her 'secret spouse' Count Alexey Razumovsky; he commissioned a baroque church and she commissioned the 88-metre tall baroque belltower.
The monastery was closed in 1920, looted in 1930 (the Tsar-Bell of 65 tons was destroyed), and returned to the Russian Orthodox Church in 1945. The lavra continued as the seat of the Moscow Patriarchy until 1983, when the patriarch was allowed to settle at the Danilov Monastery in Moscow. The monastery is currently home to over 300 monks.
v Images courtesy Wikipedia, reproduced under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License