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Demonstration of the icon “Selected Saints (apostles Peter and Paul, prophet Elijah, Venerable Macarius Zheltovodsky and Unzhensky) in Prayer”

83rd birthday of Metropolitan of Minsk and Sluck, the Honorable Patriarchal Exarch of All Belarus Filaret will be celebrated on March 21, 2018.

Icon “Selected Saints (apostles Peter and Paul, prophet Elijah, Venerable Macarius Zheltovodsky and Unzhensky) in Prayer” will be demonstrated as part of the celebration of the solemn event.

The icon was created by a Russian icon painter in the first half of the 19th century. The iconography of the work is distinguished by the original choice of characters. Traditionally, such icons depict Saint Peter and Saint Paul, Elijah and Elisha (or Moses). The image of the Venerable Macarius (1349-1444) is probably connected with the custom character of the icon, which also depicts the holy patrons of the family. Below the saints there is an image of a monastery. Saint Makarius is known as the founder of a number of monasteries in the vicinities of Nizhny Novgorod and Kostroma.

In February 2018, the icon was granted to the museum by artist Aliaksandr Maliarevich, who works in the field of monumental and decorative art.

Metropolitan Filaret (secular name Kirill Varfolomeevich Vakhromeev, born on March 21, 1935 in Moscow) is the prominent figure of the Belarusian Orthodox church. On October 10, 1978 he was appointed the Metropolitan of Minsk and Belarus, since October 16, 1989, the Patriarchal Exarch of All Belarus, permanent member of the Synod of the Russian Orthodox Church, chairman of the Synod of the Belarusian Exarchate.

Since 1992 he was appointed the Metropolitan of Minsk and Sluck, the Patriarchal Exarch of All Belarus, the Sacred Archimandrite of the Holy Assumption Žirovičy Monastery. Since December 2013 – the Honorary Patriarchal Exarch of All Belarus.

The arrival of Metropolitan Filaret in Belarus presaged future changes in the church life.

The authority of Metropolitan Filaret in Belarus promoted the restoration of historical bishop cathedras. In Polack, Pinsk and Mahilioŭ, the cathedras opened in October 1989; in Homieĺ and Brest in January 1990; in Navahrudak and Hrodna in October 1991; in Turaŭ and Viciebsk in May 1992. In 1989, the Belarusian Exarchate was founded, to unite all the dioceses into a single ecclesiastical and administrative structure.

The same year, Saint Euphrosyne Monastery in Polack and the Nativity of the Virgin Monastery in Hrodna were returned to the Church. On September 1, 1989, classes were resumed in the Minsk Theological Seminary in Žirovičy.

A significant event in the life of the Belarusian people was the revival of ancient relics, the spiritual symbols of Belarus - the Cross of Saint Euphrosyne, the Mother Superior of Polack, and her silver shrine. The ceremonial return of the Cross, restored by the modern master Mikalaj Kuzmich, to the Saint Euphrosyne Cathedral in Polack took place in 1997. In 2007, on the day of the memory of the Saint, the restored shrine with the imperishable relics was consecrated.

Recent series of canonizations were a consolation for Belarusian believers. They testify to the vitality of the Church, the developing profound comprehension of its historical past.

On June 12, 2003, the fundamental Agreement on Cooperation between the Republic of Belarus and the Belarusian Orthodox Church was signed, which became the basis for the subsequent cooperation between the Church and the state. Programs of cooperation of the Belarusian Orthodox Church with a number of ministries are being implemented, such as Ministries of Culture, Education, Information, Labor and social Protection, Internal Affairs, Defense, Emergency Situations, Natural Resources and Environmental Protection, Sports and Tourism; as well as with the National Academy of Sciences of Belarus, the Belarusian State University, the State Border Committee, the Chernobyl Committee of the Council of Ministers of the Republic of Belarus, the Aviation Committee, the National State TV and Radio Company, the regional executive committees, the Minsk City Executive Committee, etc.

The spheres of cooperation between the state and the Church include spiritual, moral, patriotic education of children and youth, peacemaking, charity activities, improvement of moral and physical health of people, support of the family institution, motherhood and childhood, protection, revival and multiplication of the historical heritage and environment protection.



Uladzimir Prakaptsow,

Director General

of the National Art Museum of the Republic of Belarus

Honored Artist of the Republic of Belarus