The Nativity of the Virgin Mary monastery in Curchi

Distance from Chisinau: 45 km
Trip to the excursion place: 45-60 min 
Duration of excursion: 6 hours

The men's monastery of Curchi is located in a nice place near the village Buzesti, some 14 kilometers from Orhei and is surrounded with the rich nature.
Nativity of the Virgin Mary monastery  was based during the government of the ruler Stefan the Great. It settles down in the area Orhei. The first church in the territory was the Stone church «Birth of the Virgin» which distinguishes itself with the fine belltower, it was called as the summer church. Later the Winter church «Sacred Dimitri» near cells of the abbot was constructed. The court yard and the monastery building were organized in the form of two terraces surrounded by rocky mountains. The orchard, lake, pool, and the monastery cemetery were located inside. In the architectural style of the church «Birth of the Virgin» you can feel the influence of Russian baroque.
The founder of the first monastic community is Iordake Curchi, he constructed in these lands on the own earth the wooden church named in honor of the sacred great martyr Dmitry. There is a legend according to which, in this part of Codru long time ago the gang of the robbers supported themselves with robberies, the head of them was Iordake Kurk dealing with in robberies. Somehow towards evening gangsters have seen the man and the woman on road. They have attacked and have killed both but when began to search corpses, the leader has learned in killed own parents. Then Iordake has confessed, has based a monastery, has accepted a monkhood, his example was followed by a part of robbers.
The monastery ensemble has arisen in 1773. The monastic farmstead consisting of two terraces, upper and lower, is enclosed with the stone wall with towers on corners and built up in perimeter with the brother cells, father superior's rooms and household constructions. On the lower terrace the stone pool was arranged.
The temple of the Nativity of the Virgin Mary was constructed in 1880. Octahedral in the plan it is surrounded with the outstanding altar and vestibules on the main axes and small side-altars on the diagonal. The central part is covered with the dome on the high round drum. Originally four side-altars were crowned with the turrets only two western turrets of them remained till now. The winter church was constructed in the end of XIX  century. According to the plan it consists of the semicircular altar, the rectangular nave and square vestibule. The nave is covered with the dome on the round light drum, and the vestibule and altar have arches. The interior is light and majestic owing to the high and open space of the nave. This church is the monument of the Neobyzantian style.
At the end of XIX — XX century brother cells, father superior's rooms and fencing with the gatehouse tower were built.
Besides, the monastic architectural ensemble includes the nine buildings with cells and father superior's rooms built at the beginning of XX century, garden and small stone pool. Once the monastery had the hotel, school and children's shelter.
In 1943 they took attempts to recreate the painting and domes. Till now they restored only three bells: the main one and two of smaller size hang above the entry to the temple. In 1958-2002 the monastery has been closed, and its territory is given under a psychiatric clinic and narcological branch.
In 1995 Curchi started working as the men's monastery and was opened for visiting.
Sights in vicinities:
• Museum complex in the open air Old Orhei
• Literary Donici Museum
Recommendations for the tourist
• convenient footwear and clothes
• headdress against the sun
• the camera
• for women: the clothes covering shoulders and a skirt below knees are obligatory
Services of the guide: Russian, Romanian, English, German languages
Transport services: Minivan, Minibus, Bus  

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