Secu Monastery – Neamt County
Secu Monastery is located 22 km from Targu Neamt. The religious complex is near Secu brook on the foot of Vasan mountain . This monastery looks like a medieval city with thick walls of stone and defense towers.
Year of the construction: 1602 by Nestor Ureche – the father of Grigore Ureche
Address: village Vanatori, Neamt County, postal code 617500
Tel: +(40) 233 25 18 62
The Patron of Secu Monastery: “Taierea capului Sfantului Ioan Botezatorul – The heading of John the Baptist” (29 August)
Short history of Secu Monastery
Secu Monastery is a 500 years old Romanian Orthodox settlement. The first hermitage was raised in the year 1530. The buildings that we can see today at Secu Monastery were built in the year 1602 by Nestor Ureche.
The church of Secu monastery was built in 1602 in the shape of a rectangular city, in the middle of the surrounding walls. In the year 1821 here took place the last battle between Turks and Eteristi. The Turkish won the battle and burned the church. After that, most of the buildings and cells had to be rebuild, together with the chapel St Nicholas.
In the year 1832 on the place of the old wooden church a new one is raised. This new church from Secu Monastery is made out of stone with patron The Birth of John the Baptist. The church is a massive construction in the shape of a clover with a big open tower. In the year 1850 the interior of the church was painted and the wall that separates the altar from the rest of the church was remade out of lime tree, covered in gold and sculpted in a Baroque style.
The interior of the church from Secu Monastery respects the basic shapes and configuration of the first Moldavian churches. At the entrance there are two graves that belong to the founders of Secu monastery, Nestor Ureche and his wife, Mitrofana. In front of the south side there is a small arch where we can find the grave of Varlaam.
The most important icon from Secu Monastery is the Icon of St Mary, Mother of Jesus from the main church of the monastery. This icon was a gift from ruler Vasile Lupu in 1647 as a sign of respect to Mitropolitul Varlaam (Mitropolit is a high religious position).The icon was brought from Cyprus Island and is known as the Cypriot Icon.
Secu Monastery is representative for the Moldavian architectural style from the end of the XVI century and the beginning of the XVII century.