Serapion Alexandrovskyi (secular name – Lohynovskyi Stefan Serhiiovych)

Serapion Alexandrovskyi (secular name – Lohynovskyi Stefan Serhiiovych)

Serapion Alexandrovskyi (secular name – Lohynovskyi Stefan Serhiiovych) was born on July 22, 1748 in the Alexandrovsky settlement of the Volodymyr province (now Alexandrov, Vladymyr region, Russian Federation) in the family of a priest. In 1759–1770 he studied at the seminary of the Trinity Lavra of St. Sergius; due to his academic  progress, he was invited to teach Latin and geography at the seminary. On February 8, 1771, he was ordained a monk, later ordained a hierodeacon, and appointed preacher of the Slavic Greek Latin Academy in Moscow.

From 1772 he was a hieromonk, from 1775 he was the abbot of the Moscow Exaltation of the Holy Cross Monastery, a member of the Moscow consistory, and a censor of church publications. In 1776 he was transferred by the abbot to the Moscow Znamenskyi Monastery, in 1779 he was ordained archimandrite of the Moscow Bohoiavlenskyi Monastery. In this position, Serapion in 1782 ruled in St. Petersburg churches as an archimandrite and preacher. On June 10, 1788, in the Holy Dormition Cathedral in Moscow, he was ordained bishop Dmytrovskyi, vicar of the Moscow Diocese. In this position he was the chief assistant of Metropolitan Platon of Moscow (Levshyn) for more than 11 years, due to whose illness he headed the entire Diocese from 1792. In 1798 he was appointed a member of the Moscow Synodal Office. From October 21, 1799 – archbishop of Kazan and Simbirsk.

From December 11, 1803 – metropolitan of Kyiv and Halych, archimandrite of the Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra, a member of the Holy Synod. He arrived in Kyiv in February 1804. As a protector of the Kyiv-Mohyla Academy, in 1806 he drew up a project for the development of the educational institution, promoted honoring the best students, raising the salaries of teachers (it doubled since 1807), and provision material assistance to needy students. After the fire of 1811, when almost the entire Podil with the academy and monasteries burned down, he ordered to give the school 8,000 rubles from the printing house of the Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra.   In 1812, by his order, more than 29 thousand rubles were allocated and it was allowed to collect donations for the restoration of the Old Academic Corps (in particular, metropolitan Serapion was the first to contribute 2,000 rubles of his own funds to this cause). The building was repaired and restored according to the project of architect A. Melenskyi in 1812–1815.

Under his rule, in 1812, the lightning-damaged cupola on the Bell Tower of St. Sophia Cathedral was renovated in 1807, and in 1819 a risalit was added to the central part of the Bakery. The bishop served daily in the morning and at lunch in the house church of the Kyiv-Sophia Metropolitan House. During the entire period of his stay at the Kyiv cathedra, in 1804–1824, metropolitan Serapion kept diaries, where he described in detail the everyday events of his life. For modern historians, these diaries are a valuable narrative source, with interesting details of everyday life in Kyiv in the early nineteenth century (currently stored in the Institute of Manuscripts of the National Library of Ukraine named after V.I.Vernadskyi).

In January 1822, metropolitan Serapion was released “at rest” at his own request, due to illness. He died on September 14, 1824, and was buried in the crypt of St. Sophia Cathedral.