Saint Calinic Cernicanul Monastery- Popânzăleşti
Monastery / Church
• The Pious Saint Calinic Cernicanul (April 11th)
• The Pious Saint Parascheva (October 14th)
• Saint Hierarch Nicholas (December 6th)
Monks monastery founded in 1853 by St. Calinic Cernicanul, Bishop of Ramnic.
• 1678:The wooden church of Ioan Hamza
• 1853: The current church, founded by St. Calinic Cernicanul
• 1864-1992: It works as a parish church;
• 1992: At the initiative of Nestor Vorniceanu, Archbishop of Craiova and Metropolitan Bishop of Oltenia, a monastery is re-established here.
Popânzălești Monastery is a Christian-Orthodox nun monastery, located about 25 kilometers southeast of Craiova, in the village with the same name, the commune of Drăgotești, in Dolj county.
Popânzălești Monastery is mentioned in historical documents from 1678, when it was entrusted to the Bishopric of Ramnic, by the chancellor Hamza from Popânzălești, its founder.
Towards the end of his life, chancellor Hamza became a monk, at the monstaery he built, receiving the name of Ioan. He had endowed the monastery with all the necessities of the monastic life, he included it in the hearth of the village, a fact reinforced by Saint Voivod Constantin Brâncoveanu in a document of 1695.
Legend says that the chancellor was once an outlaw and confessing to a monk, he was advised to use the amounts stolen to build a worship place.
In the year 1799, the Archimandrite Metodie rebuilts the wooden monastery from its foundation, on the site of the old church, and dedicates it to Saint Gregory Decapolitul and Gregory the Merciful.
In 1852, the two titular saints of the monastery were painted in the same icon, at the request of Saint Calinic of Cernica, who was already a bishop at that time, by the monks and painters Constantin and Florea, from the Frasina Monastery.
During the reign of Barbu Știrbei (1849-1853; 1854-1856) extensive restoration work begins, as the whole ensemble was damaged by the earthquake of 1838.
In 1850, after Saint Calinic from Cernica became Bishop of Ramnic, the works continued successfully.
Attracted to the tranquility of the place, the new bishop himself builds the new monastery, which will be ready in less than two years.
Saint Calinic gave the monastery an icon picturing Virgin Mary and a golden necklace.
The new church, dedicated to Saint Hierarch Nicholas, was consecrated on July 15, 1853.
In 1864, after the secularization of the monastery assets, at the command of the ruler Alexandru Ioan Cuza, the monks moved to other monasteries, and the monastery church was transformed into a parish church.
On June 8, 1992, after the re-establishment of the Popanzalesti Monastery, at the proposal of Nestor Vornicescu, the archbishop of Craiova and the metropolitan bishop of Oltenia, the monastery added another titular saint: Saint Pious Parascheva.
The church is built of brick, in the form of a cross, and has one meter thick walls. The tower of the church, located above the narthex, has no opening inwards. The painting, in a neo-Byzantine style, was executed in tempera.
The monastery was led, since the re-establishment and until the autumn of 2013 (September), by the Protosyncellus Fanurie Chiriță, the abbot of this settlement.
From the moment it became a monastery of nuns and until now the monastery is led by the nun Steliana Mațea, the current abbess.
Since the fall of 2015, the monastery church has entered an extensive restoration process, the services officiating in a small chapel, arranged in the old dining room of the monastery.