It is very close to Sataniv. It is a little more than 3 kilometers on foot, and you can take one of the buses heading to the resort of Sataniv. The defensive Trinity Monastery in Slobidka-Satanivska is an excellent addition to many monuments of ancient Sataniv.
At the turn of the 16th and 17th centuries, three kilometers from Sataniv, downstream of the Zbruch River, Orthodox monks founded the defensive Trinity Monastery. On three sides, it was surrounded by 2-meter-thick walls up to 6 meters in hight. From the Zbruch side, the monastery was protected by a rocky steep slope with artificial caves on the side. Perhaps the predecessor of the monastery was a cave hermitage, because there are many unexplored grottoes in the rocks around.
The monastery consists of the Trinity Monastery Church of the middle of the 17th century, cells with a bell tower from the same period and a later built entrance gate. From 1707 to 1799 it belonged to the Greek Catholic Church and was used by monks of the Order of Saint Basil the Great. As a result of a reconstruction in 1744, the church acquired baroque features. In times of Basilian fathers, the monastery became the residence of the only officially registered professional beggar’s craft in Ukraine.
Arseniy Satanivskyi, a well-known enlightener, a pupil of the Kyiv-Mohyla Academy, served in the Trinity Monastery. At the request of the Moscow Tsar Oleksiy Mykhaylovych, during the church reform of Patriarch Nikon, Metropolitan of Kyiv Sylvester Kosiv in 1649 sent Arseniy Satanivskyi and Epiphaniy Slavynetskyi to Moscow. They supervised the translation of theological books, according to which the service is still being conducted in all Orthodox churches of the Moscow Patriarchy. They were also engaged in strengthening the Rus’ identity in Moscow. But, subsequently, Arseniy fell out of favor with the authorities, left Russia and ended his life in the Sataniv’s monastery.
Going to the Alpine campaign, Oleksander Suvorov prayed in the monastery church all night long. In 1899 it became a female monastery. Its buildings were damaged during the shelling in 1914. In 1929 the monastery was closed and destroyed by soviets. The monastery resumed life thanks to the Germans in 1942. Then, under the leadership of Abbess Raphael, the church and cells were restored. In 1962 the monastery was closed again by the Soviet regime. The local collective farm began to dismantle the monastery walls and limestone blocks for the construction of cowsheds.The shrine was returned to the Orthodox community in 1989.
The Trinity Monastery Church with a five-pointed apse was built in 1654 as a replacement of an old wooden one. A sundial appeared on the south wall during the reconstruction of the monastery in 1744.
The stone cells, rectangular in plan were also built in the middle of the 17th century together with a defensive bell tower and a refectory.
There is a gate tower-bell tower in the center of the cells. There is a through passage in its first tier, covered with a semicircular vault with stripping. A staircase leads to the second tier, built into the walls of the corridor. The third tier, during the 1744 restoration, had a profiled cornice finish with segmental breaks in the Baroque style.
There are carved white stone pilaster capitals in the Renaissance style on the eastern facade of the first tier. They consist of volutes, ionics and a rosette. On the facade of the bell tower stands a small sculpture of St. Rokhus the pilgrim with a dog – the patron saint of plague patients.
Passage to the bell tower:
The end of the bell tower:
The entrance gate in the Baroque style was erected during the rebuilding of the monastery in the middle of the 18th century. The gate is made of stone, plastered, and is two-story. To the gate from the side of the monastery yard adjoined a rectangular annex, covered with a gable roof. The passage wall at the gate is also decorated with pilasters and profiled cornices. The second tier ended with a pediment of a profile close to that installed on the Trinity Church. The second tier of the annex and the gate was in ruins at the end of the 20th century. Already in our time it was replaced by a tin roof.
View of Sataniv from Satanivska Slobidka: