Kyiv Pechersk Lavra is Orthodox monastic complex in Kiev, Ukraine. One of the largest Christian centers of the shrines of the country. An outstanding historical and architectural monument.
Founded in 1051 as a cave monastery outside of Kiev. In the Middle Ages, it was the stronghold of Greek Orthodoxy in Russia, the center of opposition to secular authorities (Russian and Lithuanian princes) and westernization. In 1592 he received the Stavropigius of the Patriarch of Constantinople. In 1688, it became a lavra. In the early modern times, it became the center of the Orthodox pilgrimage from the entire Russian Empire.
The National Kyiv-Pechersk Historical and Cultural Reserve (since 1996) operates on the territory of the Upper Lavra. Actually the monastery is located on the territory of the Lower Lavra. Both parts of the Lavra are open to visitors.
Tragic events after 1917 served as an impetus for the total extermination of the Orthodox clergy and all that was associated with the church. In 1920 the Lavra was closed. On August 4, 1929, the communist government completed work on transforming the former monastery into an All-Ukrainian Museum, whose main purpose was to be the center of anti-religious propaganda in the Ukrainian SSR.
During the Second World War in 1941, Soviet troops blew up the Holy Assumption Cathedral.
In 1990, the Lavra was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.