About sight: Kostomarovo

Kostomarovo Savior convent is quite near the M4 highway, but on the opposite bank of the river. If you go from the north, you should turn to Liski, and if you go from the south, you should turn to Podgorensky beyond Pavlovsk.

According to a legend, the convent was established by Christian monks who fled from Byzantine in the 8th century. That is, the cave convent appeared there two centuries before the Conversion of Russia. However, this legend has no proofs. So, it is supposed the Kostomarovo convent, as the nearby Divnogorsky monastery, was established in the 17th century by the monks and Cossacks from Novorossiya.

Kostomarovo Savior convent is located in a small valley between two chalk mountains. At the bottom are the dwelling and household buildings, as well as the Church of the Seeking of the Lost where the Icon of the Mother of God of Kostomarovo is kept. The church is dominated by the mountain called Golgotha.

There were dug out two cave temples in the mountain: the Cathedral of Holy Image of the Saviour Not Made by Hands and the Church of Seraphim of Sarov. The Cathedral of Holy Image of the Saviour Not Made by Hands is the main temple of the convent. The entry is in the diva rock and the entire cathedral is under the rock striking imagination by its dimensions. The cathedral seats about two thousand people and the ceiling is supported by 12 chalk pillars. By a passage you can go to the aisle of martyrs Vera, Nadezhda, Lyubov and their mother Sophia. Further on is a hermitic cell, a brethren burial vault and a small chapel.

A pilgrimage path goes down the slope of the mountain from the Cathedral of Holy Image of the Saviour Not Made by Hands. Three cells of stylit monks are near the path. A beautiful chapel was built above one of the cells. The Church of Seraphim of Sarov is also there. It is not as big as the Cathedral of Holy Image of the Saviour Not Made by Hands, but it has a very beautiful iconostasis with icons cut right in chalk rock.

At the end of the pilgrimage path is a small chapel serving the entry to the Cave of Repentance. It is a long, narrow underpass with icons and candles on the walls. Its ceiling is coming down and to enter the cave itself you need bend double. For several centuries people came there to confession.

The pilgrimage path runs along the slope of the mountain Golgotha. After the Cave of Repentance the pilgrims usually climb the mountain. A wooden cross and the big Chapel of Crucifixion is on the mountain.

If you have enough time, you should go to the Holy Spring of the Icon of the Mother of God of Tikhvin. It is on the bank of the Don River. Beyond the village Kostomarovo is a turn to a dirt road (at all crossroads you should turn right). 

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