Sokolica Monastery


Sokolica MonasteryThe church of Virgin's Maphorion at Boljetin is better known as Sokolica, named after the hill at whose foot it is located. It was built in the 14th or 15th century probably by a landlord from the surroundings of the town of Zvecan. It got the rank of a monastery probably thanks to the sculpture of Virgin Mary with Christ which was brought there from the western portal of the Banjska Monastery in order to hide it from the Turks. The cult of Sokolica Virgin has always enjoyed a great reputation among the people, regardless of their confession. A spacious narthex was subsequently added to the church of small dimensions, while a belfry was built between the two wars. It was built with the neatly cut stone, with shallow semiovally arched apse. The facades, the northern one in particular, have many inscriptions presenting primitive drawings of people and animals as well as old inscriptions. Although the wall paintings were severely damaged during the Turkish rule, several representations have been preserved: Christ Pantocrator in the dome, Assumption on the western wall, Liturgy of Archpriests in the apse. Fragments of figures clad in laics clothes are visible on the southern wall who might be the founders. The Church keeps three old and valuable books: Russian Book of Psalms from the 17th century, "Zavomaje Ogledalo" in Bulgarian from 1816 and the Prayer Book from 1838.

Sokolica church
The exterior of the Holy Virgin church, Sokkolica monastery

In the beginning of this century a grammar school was opened in the monastery the church served as a parish church. The area around the convent is now populated by Albanians, the last Serbian family having emigrated from the area in 1967. Since 1956 the monastery has been a convent. The architectural repairs and conservation works took place in 1995/1996. A new dormitories of the monks was built in the 1980's.

Today it is very well known as a center of iconography and fresco painting. Abbess Macaria, beside her PhD in chemistry and MA in theology, is probably the best fresco and icon painter in Serbia today.

Mother MakariaThe beautiful icons of Sokolica monastery can be seen in many churches in Serbia as well as abroad. The sisters are also active in translating patristic texts and publishing. In recent years Sokolica monastery has become an important place of spiritual retreat for young Orthodox girls who wish to perfect their iconografy in the atmosphere of prayer and spiritual contemplation.

During the war 1998-1999 the monastery was the place of refuge and asssistance to both Serbs and Albanians. Since it is situated in the predominantly Serb inahbited Nothern part of Kosovo the monastery continued relatively peaceful life after the war. It is constantly under protection of Danish KFOR troops because of the neighboring Kosovo Albanian village.

Abbess Makaria (Obradovic). Mother Makaria is one of the best Serbian fresco painters.

Sokolica sisters with Abbot Teodosije and Fr. Avakum
Abbess Makaria and her sisters with Abbot Teodosije of Decani and Fr. Avakum

Holy Virgin Mary
The sculpture of Mother of God - Sokolica Monastery

Chicago Tribune, Abbess Helps Serbs and Ethnic Albanians, June 23

Mother Makaria
About Icons, Politics, International community, by INET

We plan to open the exhibition of the copies of Gracanica fresco paintings in United States and European capitals. -If it was not for NATO soldiers even more churches and monasteries would have been destroyed and burned down. -Exact overview of the property ownership in Kosovo before the international community came in, would affect the change in world politics to kosovo, said, among other things, Mother Makaria, abbess of the Sokolica Monastery

 


In the monastery "arhondariki" decorated by copies of famous frescoes of angels
painted by mother Makaria


Showing the monastery icon studio to visitors

MONASTERIES OF OUR DIOCESE
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/ Decani / Gracanica / Sopocani / Pecka Patrijarsija /
/ Crna Reka / Devic / Sv. Vraci / Sv. Arhangeli /
/ Sv. Trojica / Sokolica / Gorioc / Binac /
/Draganac / Djurdjevi StupoviDuboki Potok / Koncul

Banjska / Dolac / Budisavci / St. Mark / Korisa
Hvostanska / Ubozac
/ Kmetovci / St. Uros


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