Spaso-Sumorin monastery in Totma
Spaso-Sumorin monastery is a former orthodox monastery in Totma city. The monastery was founded in 1554. Spaso-Sumorin monastery got its name due to the main St. Transfiguration church and the name of his founder – St. Feodosiy Sumorin being canonized under the name Feodosiy of Totma.
St. Feodosiy Sumorin was born in Vologda in 1530. Coming of age Feodosiy decided to devote his life to the God and took the monastic vow in Spaso-Prilutsky monastery. The cloister traded salt that was extracted in Totma. The monk Feodosiy was sent to Totma to control the salt production. In 1554 he founded a new monastery. After receiving the charter from Ivan IV that made the cloister free from duties Feodosiy during a year built a wooden church and cells. In 1554 he bought a mill that enriched the monastery’s treasury. Feodosiy managed to establish a model and well-organized economy that allowed Totma cloister during a short time became one of the richest monasteries in the Russian North. The saint died on January 28, 1568.
In 1613 the monastery was ravaged during Polish-Lithuanian invasion. In 1693, 1694 and 1702 the tsar Peter the Great visited Spaso-Sumorin monastery.
Stone St. Transfiguration church was built during 1623 and 1689; it became the first stone building in Totma municipality. In XIX century the walls and vaults inside the church were decorated by murals. Partial reconstruction of Transfiguration church was made in 1876-1880.
The most grandiose building of the monastery is the Ascension church. The wooden Ascension church was built after the fire in 1690. A new stone church instead of the wooden one was erected in 1757. The construction of the renewed Ascension church was completed in 1825 when a big refectory was attached to the monastery.
Since 1800 a construction of a stone belfry started in Spaso-Sumorin monastery that continued till 1843. That belfry was the second by height after the belfry of St.Sophia cathedral in Vologda. After 1829 the monastery buildings were fenced. The monastery stone fence with corner towers are partially preserved till now. In 1870 the church of Assumption of Virgin Mary built into the fence was erected.
After the revolution of 1917 the monastery was closed. In Soviet times there was a forestry technical school and military units. Nowadays the monastery is restored.
In the cells of the Father Superior and brothers one of the branches of Totma museum association is placed – Open stocks. The exposition of this museum consists of rich collections of old ethnographic things.