/ / The convent of San Giovanni Theristis: photos, description (Monastero di San Giovanni Theristis)

The convent of San Giovanni Theristis: photos, description (Monastero di San Giovanni Theristis)

The convent of San Giovanni Theristis - Orthodox monastery, located in the town Bivongi in the Italian region of Calabria. It is part of the diocese of the Romanian Orthodox Church in Italy.

Until the 11th century Calabria was part of the Byzantine Empire. Then, on the territory of the region in the valley of Vallata dello, Stelara, Allara lived a Greek monk named John Theristus. Over time, it agiasma is the source of Holy water - became a popular place of pilgrimage, and that is why it was built the Byzantine monastery. After the Norman conquest of Italy, the monastery became one of the most important in the southern part of the country Basilian churches. His rich library and numerous works of art was famous for until the 15th century. Then began a brief period of decline, which ended in 1579, the year when the order of monks-Basilian again made the monastery his main center in southern Calabria. In the 17th century the building was looted by bandits, and the monks moved to another, larger monastery located outside the town of Stilo. With them they took the relics of St. John Theristus. And in the beginning of the 19th century, after the invasion of the Kingdom of the two Sicilies, the monastery was bought by the municipality of the commune Bivongi and passed into private hands. Only in 1980-ies he returned to the property of the commune, and in 1990-ies the monastery were restored. Then he was transferred to the Basilian order. In 2001, the year it was visited by the Patriarch of Constantinople, Bartholomew I, who has moved the relics of St. John Theristus. And in 2008-m year, the municipality Bivongi handed over the monastery in 99-year use of the newly created Romanian Orthodox Church.

The building of the monastery is a sample of the transition from the Byzantine to the Norman style. From the latter monastery got four lateral columns, closed arches that support the dome. The external walls bear clear signs of Byzantine architecture. Inside preserved ancient Byzantine frescoes depicting St. John Theristis.