Studenica and Gradac Monasteries
|Saint Symeon's Reliquary.|
|The fantastic west door from the exonarthex into the narthex.|
Today is a feast day of Saint John the Baptist, and it was encouraging to see the monasteries filled with pilgrims, families spending their Saturday to visit a monastery, pray, and light candles.
The ruins of Gradac in 1917 before restoration, from the same view as the above photo.
By Pokrychkin - Dragomir Pétroniévitch (1917)., Public Domain, Link
We were planning to visit Sopochani monastery, but road construction twarted our efforts. We'll try again tomorrow. Tonigh, I'm staying in Novi Pazar., which means "New Market" ("Pazar "is the Serbian pronunciation of Bazaar). It has long been a significant center of trade. Tradition says that St. Paul even travelled through this area. We will visit a church with first century foundations, built on the site of the first Christian community here, at the spot where he preached. The international character of Novi Pazar is reflected in the significant Moslem population, the highest in all Serbia. We've had the same dinner for the third night in a row: cucumber and tomato salad, rolls, potato wedges and grilled chicken (grilled fish was substituted for those fasting on Friday). There are hot springs at our hotel, a relaxing way to end a long, wonderful day.