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Ioanno-Predtechyns'ka Church | Foto | Scheme 1 | Scheme 2
Ioanno-Predtechyns'ka St. (Chervonyh Prykordonnykiv St.)

Ioanno-Predtechyns'ka Church belongs to the most ancient churches of Kamyanets'. Time of its building is unknown. The earliest mentioning about this church we can find in the records of the pilgrim Korobeynykov. As for its builder, there is a mentioning from the XVIII century, that it was built by "the pans Lastovets'kyis". In 1606, one of the Lastovets'kyis, Vasyliy, the Captain of the Kamyanets' Royal Infantry, bought the estate from the Tsiokovs'kyis, that sided with Predtechyns'ka Church, and presented it to the church and its congregation. During the Moslems' rule in Kamyanets', Predtechyns'ka Church was turned into the mosque of the great vizier, as it can be seen in the plan of 1672. When the Turks left Kamyanets', this church passed to the Uniate Church (it was Uniate till 1795). In the hands of the Uniats this church began to look like the Catholic one with side chancels and Catholic altars inside. There were the Uniate congregations at the church at that time: the senior one named after St. Ioann Predtecha, the junior one - named after Blagovischennia (Annunciation) and the sisterhood in honour of the Immaculate Conception of the Saint Virgin. From 1781, Predtechyns'ka Church became the Cathedral, and in 1795, it was united with the Orthodoxy. It was cathedral till 1878.

Literature: Е Сецинский. Исторические сведения о церквях…

The History of Ioanno-Predtechyns'ka Church

Ioanno-Predtechyns'ka Church is one of the most ancient churches of Kamyanets'. Its history is connect with the history of Kamyanets' to such extend that it is impossible to understand some facts of the history of the temple without knowing what events took place in our region.
The exact data of the building of the temple is unknown.
The first mention about this church we can find in the records of the Orthodox clerk, Tryfon Korobeynykov (1593).
Tryfon Korobeynykov was a Moscowian merchant. He was a clerk from 1588. In 1582, following the dictate of the Tsar, Ionn ІV, he goes to Afon with the purpose of doing charity for the soul of killed by father prince Ivan. The second time, in 1593, he goes on the pilgrimage to Konstantynopil' and Palestyna. On his way back, he goes to Kamyanets'. He brought a model of the Coffin of the God to Moscow, and in 1594 he wrote "The Description of the Journey from Moscow to Tsargrad", and "The Report for the Moscowian Government" as for distributed money during the second pilgrimage to Konstantynopil' along with clerk Ogarkov, on the instructions of Csar Fedor.
"The Podil's'ky Eparchial Bulletin" (1898) gives evidences of Korobeynikov: "…In Lithuanian Land, in Kamyanets'-Podil's'kyi, to the church of Rizdvo (Birth) of Ivan Predtecha Czar's grace charity of 2 gold coins were given to the priest Vasyliy, also a gold coin was given to the poor near that church, and 5 altyns and 5 groshes (it is measures of the ancient money) - to the church clerks".
In the same "Bulletin" from 1890, along with references to Greek and Catholic visitor descriptions from 1758, we can find further information about the Predtechyns'ka Church. According to those description, the church was built by the pans Lastovets'kyis, i.e. by the owners of Lastovets' Village, where their family estate was situated. In the ХVІ century Ugrynivtsi, Babshyn, Novoselka, Karpivtsi and other villages belonged to them. These pans were not of Polish but of ancient Russian clan. At first, they were Orthodox nobles, but it is known that later, some of the Lastovets'kyis became the members of the Union Church.
Also there are mentions about that Vasyl' Lastovets'kyi was the Kamyanets' Captain of the Royal Infantry. In 1606 he bought the estate from the Tsiolkovs'kyis, that sided with Predtechyns'ka Church, and presented it to the church and its congregation. Maybe, the reason is that the relatives of Vasyl' Lastovets'kyi, who have built that church, were burried there. We are interested in the fact that in 1606, the Predtechyns'ka Church has existed already and the Orthodox congregation that was the owner of the temple, has been there.
Till the Turks' capture of Kamyanets' in 1672, there is no any information about the Predtechyns'ka Church. Only in the plan of Kamyanets', that was made by Kipriyan Tomashevych in 1672, and printed in Krakiv, the Predtechyns'ka Church was marked by the letter "V" and was recorded as: "Russian Church of St. Ioann, now it is the mosque of the Supreme Vizier". The Catholic Cathedral (it is working now), Fransyskans'kyi Roman-Catholic Church (now Uspens'ka Church), the Roman-Catholic Church of St. Stanislav in the fortress, the Carmelites' Kliashtor (does not exist now) and the Orthodox Sviato-Troyits'kyi Monastery (Monasery of Saint Trinity) (now is given to the order of "The Fathers Basylians" of the Greek-Catholic Church, it is located opposite the present department store) were also turned into the mosque. The majority of the churches and Roman-Catholic churches were turned into the stables for the horses or were ruined.
According to Karlovets'kyi peace signed between Russia, Austria, Poland and Venice from one side, and Turkey from another side, Podillia was returned to Poland in 1699. Along with others, the Turks made terms that amvon, built at the Dominican Roman-Catholic Church and the minaret at the Cathedral will never be ruuined. This term was fulfilled, but later, to testify the victory of the Christianity over the Islam. The statue of the God's Mother was placed on the minaret.
Meanwhile, the Polish Seym that in 1699, examined the question about the returning of Podillia to Poland, and passes the law, according to which the settling for the members of the Orthodox Church and Jews is banned in Kamyanets'.
But, let's return in 1699. Favourable conditions were for fulfillment of the Seym plan. In 1596 a brunch of Catholic clergy moved away from the Orthodoxy. They accept the Union in Brest, i.e. unite with the Catholic Church and pass to the disposal of the Pope. The Polish considered it to be a temprorary event for the conversion into the Catholicism, so they remained them the Orthodox rates but changed the dogmata of their belief. For 2 years before the Turks' leaving from Kamyanets', in 1667, in Warsaw, in presence of the King and Pope's nuncio, the Archbishop of L'viv and Kamyanets', Yosyp Shumlians'kyi, from his ambitious and selfish ends, gave up the Orthodoxy and accepted the Union secretly.
At last, in 1699, as soon as the Turks left from Kamyanets', Yosyp Shumlians'kyi appeared there and began receiving of all Kamyanets' churches under his direction. At that time, the Royal Commission arrived in Kamyanets', and, considering Shumlians'kyi to be the Othodox Bishop, on penalty of death forced him to escape to another bank of the Dnister River.
But soon, everything became clear and Shumlians'kyi returned to Kamyanets' and founded the first Kamyanets' Greek- Catholic Eparchy there. At that time, the Royal Commission, carring out the order of the Seym, drove away all the Orthodox clergy from Kamyanets', sealed up the churches. One of the churches - the Ioano-Predtechyns'ka Church - was passed to the Greek-Catholics. Ever since, i.e. from 1699, the church becomes the Greek-Catholic one.
From "The Podil's'ky Eparchial Bulletin" it is known that Ioann Chezhevs'kyi was the first Greek-Catholic priest, and later his sons, Petro and Pavlo were on this position.
At first, there were a little of parish. So, in 1739 there were only twelve of them. But in the visit in 1758 it is said, that there were 3 congregations at the Church: two brotherhoods and one sisterhood
Meanwhile, the Greek-Catholic Bishop, Petro Belians'kyi, quarrelled with the moncs-Basilians, and in 1781, moved the pulpit from the Troyits'kyi Monastery (The Monastery of the Trinity) to the Predtechyns'ka Church. He mentioned to find the money they needed, repaired and rebuilt the Cathedral. He built the Greek-Catholic Seminary near it.
On March 27, 1793, Podillia became a part of the Russian Empire. And on May 4, 1793, the Greek-Catholic clergy of the Ioano-Predtechyns'kyi Cathedral in presence of the delegate from the General Derfel'din, sweared allegiance to the Russian Empress.
After that, for 2 years the church had been the Greek-Catholic one. In 1795, in the period of mass returning to the Orthodoxy, it became the Orthodox one too.
In 1799, the Church became the Orthodox Cathedral. It was repaired and altered, because it had the shape of the Roman Catholic church with side chancels, Catholic altar etc. The Orthodox iconoscope was built there.
In Fabruary, 1819, a famous Orthodox religious figure, the first Podil's'kyi Archbishop, Ioanikiy, was burried in the Predtechyns'ka Church. A bronze plate in his honour was placed there.
In 1935, according to the order of local government, the temple was demolished.

The material was given by the worker of the Kamyanets'-Podil's'kyi City State Archive, Franskevych Yevhen Mykolayovych.

Translated by Yana Anufriyeva
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