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St. George Monastery

St. George Monastery

2933 Hadzhidimovo, Bulgaria

RELIGIONS Islam, Orthodox


The Hadjidimovo Monastery "St. George the Victorious " is situated on a hill from the southeastern slopes of Pirin mountain. The monastery church is a three-nave pseudo-basilica with a large semi-circular apse and a narthex from the west. There is a chapel to the north and a high bell tower to the west. The northwest corner of the church and the chapel are surrounded by an open gallery. The walls from inside were covered with frescoes, which were unfortunately destroyed by fire in 1979. Inside, the altar is separated from the nave with a beautiful wood-carved iconostasis.
The present monastery is the heir of an old Christian sanctuary, which was also dedicated to St. George. The cloister was destroyed at the first invasion of the Ottomans, after which it rose, and later, it was again devastated. It was eventually abandoned and completely forgotten by the local population. The holy place came to light around the middle of the nineteenth century after a prophetic dream that appeared to a local shepherd. Subsequently, his discovery became legendary. For the resumption of the monastery there is a story, according to which a local shepherd by the name of Atanas Lazarov saw St. George in his dreams. The saint instructed him to dig at a particular place on the hill. Father Atanas found the miraculous icon of St. George in this spot. At the time a Turk owned the land. He was amazed by the discovery and donated the land and funds for the building of a Christian chapel. The construction of the monastic church was completed in 1864. It was consecrated in the following year. During the Balkan wars (1912-1913) the monastery was plundered, and its archives destroyed. Subsequently, the church and monastery buildings have been gradually renewed over the years. On July 29, 1979, a fire broke out in the monastery. The temple burned completely, but the miraculous icon of St. George survived intact. With the help of the Nevrocopian Metropolis and donations, in only 8 months, the church was restored, and on May 6, 1980 consecrated anew.
The greatest value of the monastery is the miraculous icon of St. George which has helped countless people, who have come to it with an open soul and faith. It is remarkable that local Muslims also join the religious celebrations and venerate the holy relic. The temple holiday is celebrated on St. George's Day (May 6). Many worshipers gather at the monastery chapel. Muslims unite with the Christian congregation for the holy feast .
George is venerated by some Christians and Muslims as a composite figure, combining Biblical, Quranic and other ancient mythical heroes. In some traditions he is identified with al-Khidr. The epithet meaning the "green prophet", is common to both Christian and Muslim folk piety. George or Hazrat Jurjays was the patron saint of Mosul. Along with Theodosius, he was revered by both Christian and Muslim communities of Jazira and Anatolia. It is not uncommon to see both Muslims and Christians alike venerate this great Saint's relics in Saint George's Greek Orthodox Church in Bethlehem.
- Direct visit
- Virtual visit: Watch excerpts from the video and the photo galleries in the media resources section.
- Classroom activity (post-visit): After the visit, examine the shared values and syncretic spiritual practices of diverse religious communities as a basis for tolerance and interfaith dialogue. This could take the form of a discussion and a homework assignment. The topic could also be expanded to a research project encompassing two lessons and two homework assignments. For detailed instructions, refer to Research Project. (

Akyazili Baba tekke - Saint Atanas chapel - Selo Obrochishte, 9630 Bulgaria

Church of St. George the Victorious - in the central part of the Giurgiu district of Sapareva Banya

St. George chapel - Unnamed Rd, 2830 Zlatolist, Bulgaria




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This project has been funded with support from the European Commission. This web site reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.