Leushinsky Monastery began with the construction of a small wooden church in the village of the same name in the Novgorod province. Funds for the construction were allocated by the landowner G. V. Kargopoltseva, the church was consecrated in honor of John the Baptist. At the same time, the merchant G. M. Medvedev donated the icon of the Praise of the Mother of God, which soon became famous for its miraculous work. It was in 1862.
Establishing a monastery
The fame of the Leushinsky shrine quickly spread in the district, this prompted the nun of the Rybinsk monastery Sergius to create a new monastery. At first, there was the Desert Predtechenskaya community, where 17 sisters lived in two small houses. From 1877 to 1881 the community was headed by the nun of the Goritsky monastery Leontiya. During this time, a lot of work has been done on the construction and improvement of these places. Two stone houses appeared for the sisters to live in, the church was repaired, and a house church was built.
The third of the sisters, thanks to whomthe Leushinsky Monastery arose, Taisiya became a nun of the Znamensky Monastery. Through her efforts, landscaping and construction continued, local traditions were introduced, prayers were held, which made it possible to rename the community into the St. John the Baptist Convent. In 1885, nun Taisia became his first abbess.
Abbess Taisiya (Maria Vasilievna Solopova)
The founder of the monastery led the monastery for 34 years until the day of her death. During this time, the Leushinsky Monastery achieved the glory of the “Northern Lavra”, being rightfully considered the third monastery in the country after Diveev and Shamordin.
Having received a good education in St. Petersburg, and showing great literary abilities, Maria Solopova went to the monastery, considering serving God as her true calling. She took tonsure in 1870, lived in several monasteries, performing various obediences, the last of which, before being appointed to Leushino, was the service as treasurer of the Znamensky Monastery on the Volkhov River.
Abbess of the Leushinsky Monastery Taisiya put a lot of effort into creating a well-known, prosperous monastery from a small monastery. The territory was rebuilt, new temples and buildings appeared, the paths were lined with slabs. But the main thing is that she managed to establish good relations with the local residents, who were previously opposed to the monastery. An almshouse, a hospital with 10 beds, where specially trained sisters worked, a library, three schools appeared in the monastery. The education of children was carried out with the money of the monastery, and the quality of education was considered the best in the Novgorod province.
Before the revolution, 460 nuns lived in the monastery, who ran the household, worked in the field, kept livestock, and worked in various workshops. Their products were accepted as a gift by the imperial family, and the abbess was honored with a personal meeting with the royal couple 7 times, which was unusual for a provincial nun.
The development of the Leushinsky Monastery under the leadership of Mother Taisia continued not only on its territory. Over the years, three farmsteads were opened: in St. Petersburg, Rybinsk and Cherepovets, two sketes appeared, a pier was built near the village of Borki, where all passenger ships sailing along the Sheksna began to moor.
Mother Taisia died in 1915, leaving her successor Abbess Agnia one of the best monasteries in Russia.
Closing the monastery
After the revolution, the monastery was renamed to preserve it. In 1919, the Leushinsky Monastery officially ceased to exist, turning into a women's labor commune. And in 1923, the new Leushino state farm was headed by a secular person who did not want to delve into the concerns of the sisters who did not leave the monastery walls.
In the early 30s, the nuns, as an alien element, were evicted, and those who opposed such a decision were repressed. The monastery buildings were transferred to the authorities, who opened a school here for children with difficult education.
Since services and monastic vows continued in the monastery until 1932, the clergy consider the forced removal from the monastery of the lastnuns.
Construction of the Rybinsk reservoir
The well-known plan "Big Volga", thanks to which a huge breakthrough was made in the development of industry and the defense capability of the Soviet country, was accepted for execution in 1923. The construction of eight major hydroelectric facilities solved the energy problems of the young Union, made the Volga a transport artery along its entire length.
The solution to this issue was accompanied by huge sacrifices. Enormous areas of forests were cut down, an even larger area of water meadows with high-quality fodder grasses went under water, a colossal intervention was made in violation of the environment, the habitats of local representatives of flora and fauna. But the biggest blow was the eviction of local residents from the flooded areas. Houses, buildings, temples were destroyed. 700 settlements were hidden under water, the city of Mologa completely disappeared, Kalyazin, Uglich, Myshkin and other cities were flooded, having lost part of their property.
Flooding of the Leushinsky Monastery
Since 1935, the construction of hydroelectric power stations in Rybinsk and Uglich began, preparations were made for flooding the territories. The former territory of the monastery also fell into this zone. Documents claim that on the eve of her appointment to the Leushinsky Monastery, Mother Taisia had a prophetic dream about the flooding of these places.
The heads of the monastery churches towered above the water until the 60s of the last century, the depth of the reservoir was not enough to hide them. Then they collapsed. The driest summer on record for many years occurred in 2002.
The water level dropped critically, and islands began to appear on the map of the Rybinsk Reservoir. So the preserved walls of the buildings of the former Leushinsky monastery became visible from the water. A prayer service was served on the island.
Creation of the Novoleushinsky John the Baptist Monastery
In the town of Myakse, in memory of the lost monastery in 2015, a new church was consecrated in the name of John the Baptist, which is not far from the old monastery. A new community of six sisters was also created here, who lived in an old merchant's house next to the temple. They were engaged in farming and landscaping. At the end of 2016, the Holy Synod granted the petition to open the Novouleushinsky Monastery in the village of Myaksa, appointing Nun Kirilla as abbess. The history of the Leushinsky Monastery continues.