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Saint Ecaterina Monastery, Tătărăștii de SusCod 1555

Fortress of the sun. This is how the erst inhabitants called the church and the medieval courts in brick, raised in Tătărăştii de Sus, settlement documented in 1538. The historical monument is called the ruins of the Bălăceanu courts, after the landowner family, to whom tradition attributes the foundation of the imposing building, starting with 1777. In 1798, in the church chapel, Zoiţa Bălăceanu burried Anghelache Amiras from Enosu, her husband, so that in 1817, in a moment of weakness, she give him Ştefan Bellu’s property.

But he lets it in ruin. In time, eartquakes, storms and damages have transformed the Fortress of the sun, the place permanently bathed by the sunlight and God’s creating one, into a wilderness. The court walls have gradually fallen, history faded away, the weeds and garbage have burried it transforming it in an ordinary place, called La ziduri by the locals. Here in 2009, after two centuries of wild oblivion, with father Galaction’s blessing, Bishop of Alexandria and Teleorman, the cornerstone of the current monastery was set.

The church, listed in a rectangular plan, with the altar’s apse semicircular inside and polygonal on the outside, with an open porch, was probably without a tower. Inside, between the nave and the narthex, there is a number of solid columns. The church entry was done through a massive wooden door, equipped with a barricading beam on the inside.

Saint Ecaterina Monastery was founded in 2009, near the ruins of a fortified compound made up of the houses of the Bălăceanu family houses and a 1798 church. Aside from the youg martyr, the monastery also has a second holiday dedication, the Transfiguration. In the community life there are five nuns today with their priest, archbishop Serafim Dobrin.

The holy Martyr Ecaterina lived in emperor Maximian’s times, around 304. Born in the Alexandria fortress, in prince Consta’s family, the young woman was very beautiful. Even in her youth, she was interested in Greek and Latin studies, studying all major philosophers and poets of the ancient world.

After she met Christ, the young woman dedicated her life to Him, living in chastity and prayer, which not even her parents approved of. Because of this, emperors Maximian and Maxentie, cauth the saint and tortured her. By God’s mercy and her wisdom, she brought back to faith over 150 rhetors and many other non believers. In the end, the martyr was beheaded, thus becoming a martyr.


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