Monastery holds mass with limited participation
Following a nearly five-year restoration project, an ancient Orthodox monastery in Turkey’s Black Sea region has restarted mass services.
Participants went to Sümela Monastery in the Trabzon region on Aug. 15 for a ceremony marking the Assumption of the Virgin Mary.
About 70 people took part while also observing measures and restrictions against the COVID-19 pandemic.
Christian Berger, outgoing head of the EU Delegation to Turkey, was among the participants.
Sümela Monastery, located 300 meters above the forests that cover Altindere Valley in the northeastern province of Trabzon, is known locally as Meryem Ana or Virgin Mary.
Most parts of the monastery were renovated in the 18th century, and some walls were adorned with frescoes. The addition of large buildings in the 19th century brought the structure its modern form.
ajor sections of the monastery include the main stone church, chapels, kitchen, teaching rooms, guest rooms, library, and holy spring.