Late in August, our Convent celebrated its twentieth anniversary. August 22, 1999 is considered the date of its establishment. It was the day when our first sisters were tonsured into Rassophore. Actually, the history of the Convent had started long before that.
On September 27, 1996, the Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, the first Liturgy was celebrated in the Psychiatric Hospital, and on December 7 of the same year, the Sisterhood in honor of St. Elisabeth was established.
On December 7, 1997, the foundation stone of the first church of the Convent was laid. The first divine service was held at that church on April 12, 1998. The church was named after St. Nicholas. Since then, liturgies have been celebrated every Sunday.
The Church of St. Nicholas was consecrated on December 10, 1999. Monastic tonsures were performed there on the same day.
On March 24, 2000, the first monastic cells were consecrated. The housewarming of the monastic sisters took place. Also, the services in St. Nicholas Church began to be held on a daily basis since the Holy Week of that year.
The same spring, the first brothers who suffered from alcohol and drug addiction, those who had been released from jail, the homeless, and the disabled came to the Rehabilitation Center in v. Łysaja Hara.
On April 16 of the same year, a capsule was laid in the foundation of the church being built in honor of the Reigning Icon of the Mother of God.
The Feast of Radonitsa in 2002 fell on May 14, and on that day the Church of the Resurrection of St. Lazarus was founded at the Northern Cemetery in Minsk. The ceremony was followed by a panikhida service.
Since September 14, 2002, weekly prayers with the Akathist to St. Nectarius of Aegina have been held in the Boarding Home for Children with Special Needs. There is now a small chapel in honor of this saint on the premises of the Boarding Home. Liturgies take place there every Saturday.
In 2004, the construction of a residential building, a refectory, and a church began in the Men’s Rehabilitation Center.
On January 12, 2005, the Church in honor of the Holy Martyr Grand Princess Elisabeth was consecrated. The Mother Superior of the Convent, Nun Euphrosinia (Laptik), was elevated to the rank of an abbess on the same day.
On May 10 of the same year, the church at the Northern Cemetery in Minsk was consecrated and the first Liturgy was celebrated there.
On October 18, 2008, Metropolitan Philaret consecrated the new Church in honor of the Reigning Icon of the Mother of God.
On January 3, 2010, the church at the Men’s Rehabilitation Center in the village of Łysaja Hara was consecrated in honor of the Inexhaustible Chalice Icon of the Mother of God.
On October 8, 2013, the first Liturgy at the Women’s Rehabilitation Center was celebrated.
On September 1, 2014, the Private Educational Institution “IKHVIS Kindergarten and School” opened its doors to its first pupils.
On June 1, 2016, Archpriest Andrey Lemeshonok, the spiritual father of the Convent, dedicated the new Pilgrimage Center (hotel).
On August 19, 2018, the first open-air night Liturgy was held at the highest peak of Belarus.
On June 2, 2019, Metropolitan Pavel consecrated the Church of St. John of Shanghai and San Francisco, which is located on the premises of the Mental Health Hospital and is open to the people who stay there.
Currently, we continue the construction of the Ark Spiritual and Educational Center in the Convent. There are a number of workshops, including sewing, icon painting, mosaic, carpentry, stained glass, icon casing, ceramic workshops, a Publishing House, etc. There are two Rehabilitation Centers. Our Convent’s choirs sing at the daily Liturgies held in the Convent. The sisters and brothers of the Convent and Sisterhood visit people in boarding homes, the psychiatric clinic and a number of city hospitals. A church in the university campus has been consecrated not long ago. Our big Sunday School welcomes children from all over Minsk. The Convent organizes several international festivals.
As we feel the helping hand of God and His saints, we are grateful to everyone who has been making a contribution to the development of the Convent and its charitable work. The Convent unites a tremendous number of people around the world. We have plenty of ideas for the future. We feel that we need to grow and strengthen ourselves spiritually to make them come true.