Gate Church of the Trinity

Kyiv, Ukraine

The Gate Church of the Trinity is a historic church of the ancient cave monastery of Kyiv Pechersk Lavra in Kyiv, the capital of Ukraine. Originally being built as a Kievan Rus' style church, the Gate Church of the Trinity is now decorated in the Ukrainian Baroque style, having been reconstructed many times through its history.

The Gate Church of the Trinity was built in 1106-1108, as part of the Pechersk Lavra fortification, atop the main entrance to the monastery. After destruction of the Dormition Cathedral during the Mongol invasion of 1240, it became the main church of the monastery. In 1462, the most complete edition of the Kiev Pechersk Paterikcon was written here. In 1631, Petro Mohyla founded a school at the monastery's hospital. The school was later merged with the Kyivan Brotherhood School. Since 1701, the combined schools became a Kyivan Academy.

The church was studied by P. Lashkarev, I. Morgilevsky, Y. Aseev, F. Umantsev and S. Kilesso. In 1957-1958, their restoration efforts included replacing lost decorations, gilding the dome, and retouching external oil paintings.


The church is located atop the Holy Gates, the main entrance to the monastery. Near the entrance are rooms for the gate's guards. The church is wedged between monastery walls, helping to protect the gates. The monastery walls, covered in frescoes, were renewed in 1900-1901.

The Gate Church of the Trinity is divided into three naves, each containing a spherical apse off the western side. An external stone stairway leads to the church. Several narrow window openings and the overall visually uplifting effect create a heightened sense of spiritual power.

The church is a typical Kievan Rus' construction built on an ancient stone church. Kievan Rus' architectural motifs can still be seen on the southern façade. The church retained its Ukrainian Baroque exteriour after restoration in the 17th-18th centuries by Master V. Stefanovych. During restoration, a new cupola was erected and interior paintings were added.

In 1725, a large sixteen-candle chandelier was installed. During the 1730s-1740s, artists from the monastery's iconography workshop decorated the church's interiour. The church's frescoes were based on Biblical scenes, and the exterior decor was based on Ukrainian folklore. Eighteenth-century compositions have been preserved to this day.

Interiour frescoes are a unique collection of 18th-century traditional Ukrainian architecture. Allegorical and historical Biblical topics are given in a noncanonical way; some include Ukrainian national ornaments. Carved wooden chairs, painted in Ukrainian folk tradition, are installed along the western wall.



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Founded: 1106-1108
Category: Religious sites in Ukraine

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4.8/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Alex Zoz (7 months ago)
Lavra's famous business card. In addition to the well-known front facade, the side facades also deserve attention. One is an ascetic Old Russian. The second is exquisite baroque.
Дмитро Гор (2 years ago)
One of the oldest surviving churches in the city of Kyiv, it evokes the deepest respect. And concern about its safety. On February 5, 2022, I managed to catch a very successful shot. When the month “caught” on the golden cross of the church. I attach photos:::
Kerem Dülger (3 years ago)
✈️?❤️love ukrain
Cem AKDAĞ (4 years ago)
One of the 3 paid entrance gates to the area of ​​the Caves Monastery. The exterior paint of the monastic door entrance is interesting. There is an additional fee for the entrance fee to the monastery, depending on the buildings you will visit. You also have to pay a fairly high fee to take photos and videos. After entering through this door, do not neglect to look at the back.
Alexandr Larin (4 years ago)
The external reconstruction of this church has been carried out for a long time. Would love to see it finished. Look forward to. This church meets at the entrance to the laurels. And despite the unfinished look, it delights with its appearance and murals on the walls in front of the entrance! We were on a winter evening, and we were met by flocks of crows in the sky above the golden domes.
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The Church of the Holy Cross served the monastery until 1538, when it was abandoned for a hundred years as the Franciscan friary was disbanded in the Swedish Reformation. The church was re-established as a Lutheran church in 1640, when the nearby Church of the Holy Trinity was destroyed by fire.

The choir of the two-aisle grey granite church features medieval murals and frescoes. The white steeple of the church was built in 1816 and has served as a landmark for seafarers.