Ancient Athos, monastery Zograf - the Moldavian contribution to a treasury. Orthodoxy pearl - ancient Athos - lives till now under the, personal laws. It remained till now ancient, apparently, here has changed nothing ever since when the basic centres of Orthodoxy have been crushed by the Arabian world and believers have found to themselves the place protected from another's greedy looks - peninsula Halkidiki where have arisen and there are till now all 20 Athos monasteries. The sacred Mountain, on a legend, presented by the Christ of mother, Maiden Maria, lives under the most strict laws. Here there is no place to a sin and even to sinful thoughts, here already it is a lot of hundreds years the female foot, and even among local cats and dogs - only males did not go. The peninsula differs rare beauty of almost untouched nature: hillsides, entirely поросшие wood among which here and there islets strong monastic walls tower.
Communication of Athos and Moldova has deep roots. Stefan Great, unique from the European sovereigns who has managed to defend let and conditional, but, nevertheless, independence of Turkish sovereignty, became in due time the saviour of Athos monasteries.
Destruction Byzantian empires has caused decline of orthodox church which always leant against state support, used privileges and privileges. Ottoman empire, having grasped half of Europe, did not hurry up to get rid from иноверцев or to entice them in Moslem, the freedom of worship was quite real phenomenon at that time. Though it is necessary to notice, that it has been connected more with mercenary motives, than with nobleness of new masters: the orthodox paid taxes and the taxes making a considerable share in the state treasury. However anybody thus was not going to support a belief concentration - monasteries. High taxes, cancellation of all privileges have affected their well-being: the monastic life all became more difficult, monasteries fell into decay.
Meanwhile, Moldova was in those days a part of practically unique trading way on which exotic east goods arrived to Europe. As result - edge prosperity, times of prosperity which it is more already never also did not repeat. Moldavian Господарь Штефан foreheads Маре, having to that all possibilities, and, the main thing, desire, used riches of the country for support of orthodox belief. For Athos monasteries it became practically unique defender. So, Bulgarian monastery Зограф, instead of the selected earths has received in possession the Keprijansky monastery in Moldova - by the way, the Keprijansky monastery remained possession Зографа up to 1917.
Zograf as the legend says, has been based in X century by three brothers of an imperial Bulgarian sort. Since XIII century the Bulgarian tsar Ivan Asen II rendered to a monastery protection, but already in the end of the same century the monastery has been grasped by crusaders and ruined. In two centuries Штефан Great has revived the fallen into decay monastery: has constructed cathedral church, трапезную, has built landing stage. On a legend, interest Господаря in Зографу is not casual. In fight at Has blown Ыналт, Штефан was ready to concede to an enemy impact and to disappear within the precincts of a fortress. But there was to it a vision in which George Pobedonosets was to it at night and has promised a victory in fight. Only the order to bear ahead of an army an icon with its image which then should be presented Зографу, that on Athos, yes money of this monastery subsequently to help. Great Господарь has believed, and has made everything as it has been punished. As an icon ahead of an army bore a banner of the commander with George Pobedonostsa's image. Sacred George is represented sitting on a throne, trampling by feet поверженного a snake. In a hand its sword, over a head - two angels, one of them with a sword, the second - with a board, they crown George a wreath with nine beams. Штефан Great has won that fight and has executed command of the sacred: the banner has been transferred in Зограф, the help of a monastery has been rendered too the considerable. Штефан foreheads Маре it is honoured, as ктитор a monastery, his name is immortalised in monastic chronicles. Only here the banner in the XX-th century beginning has disappeared, monks even have quite accurate understanding, with whose help it happens. The truth in couple of years the banner was - became a part of a collection of the Bucharest museum where till now and it is stored. And Зографу Moldova has presented several years ago an exact copy of a banner great Господаря, it under sketches and pictures was restored by experts of the National museum. Monks were delighted. Knowing, that is a copy, have declared, that the relic has returned to a temple, have hung up on the same place where the banner hung more than three centuries. Thus, Moldova has continued old tradition of interrelation with inhabitants of Sacred mountain Athos, and wall Зографа and until now the fresco on which Great Stefan it is represented in all greatness of the nobleness decorates.
photo by Valerii Corcimari