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Durvenishki Monastery “St.Prorok Ilia”


The Darvenish Monastery “St. Prophet Ilia” is situated in the Mladost-2 district of Sofia, accessible via an asphalt road along “Andrei Lyapchev” Blvd. from Darvenitsa towards Mladost-2. Before entering Mladost-2, a detour to the south leads to the monastery.

While the founding date of the original monastery is uncertain, local legends suggest a connection to the 1595 Sofia Uprising, marked by a mass slaughter of insurgents in the vicinity. This tragic event sanctified the area, and a cross was initially erected, later followed by the construction of a chapel. Over time, additional structures were added, evolving into the monastery we see today. The current monastery, built in 1924, likely stands near the original site.

The last major renovation occurred in 1950, resulting in the construction of a new monastery church. Only the foundations of the early 20th-century residential building remain, replaced by a contemporary-style structure in the 1950s. The new building features a chapel in its southern section. The church is a small, single-apsed, three-domed structure with a vestibule. The monastery preserves old, artistically decorated church books, a gift from Russia. A significant possession is the large tapestry “The Virgin and Child,” framed in gold, presented by Pope John Paul II.

Presently, the monastery remains active, following the monastic tradition.

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