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Ukraine: restoration begins on ancient cave monastery

 Priests at the Orthodox Church of the Nativity of Jesus Christ (Ukrainian Orthodox Church-Moscow Patriarchate) in the village of Chervonyi Mak, Crimea, have started restoring an ancient cave monastery, Chalter Koba, situated on the Ai-Todor Mountain. Father Serapion, superior of the Chalter Koba Monastery, announced recently. "The monastery dates back to the Eighth century, when for many years it was a great centre of Orthodoxy in Crimea," said Fr Serapion. "About 500 years ago, it stopped functioning, and today we have the opportunity to restore it." According to Fr Serapion, religious services have been periodically held in the monastery since mid-June and a priest lives there permanently. By the winter, more monks will arrive and start organizing life in the monastery. Fr Serapion also added that all issues related to the restoration of the monastery, in particular land ownership matters, have been settled with the local authorities. Source: Religious Information Service of Ukraine