18 July 2019, 11:58
Icons presented to Putin and Lukashenko at Konevets monastery near St. Petersburg
Moscow, July 18, Interfax - Antique icons were presented to Russian President Vladimir Putin and Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko after a visit to the Konevets Monastery of the Holy Nativity of the Mother of God.
The two presidents visited Valaam on Wednesday. Subsequently, on their way to St. Petersburg, they made a stopover on Konevets Island in the western part of Ladoga Lake and visited the monastery.
A 19th-century icon of the Mother God of Konevets was presented to Putin at the monastery. A similar icon was given to Lukashenko. The Rossiya-24 (VGTRK) TV channel broadcast the presidents' visit to the monastery.
The Konevets Monastery of the Holy Nativity of the Mother of God was founded in 1393. It flourished in the 19th century. The territory where the monastery is located fell into Finland's hands after the 1917 October Revolution. Its buildings were damaged during World War II. In Soviet times, Konevets Island was home to a naval base and sailors used the monastery's buildings for their own needs. Subsequently, a decision was adopted to rebuild the monastery. It was returned to the Russian Orthodox Church in 1990. Its restoration began in 2016 on Putin's orders.
Today it is an active monastery. Infrastructure for pilgrims and tourists and a pier have already been built. Most of the monastery's buildings have been restored.
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