Gleink Abbey was founded in the early 12th century by the local nobleman, Arnhalm I of Glunich, who gave his castle for conversion to a monastery. The premises, dedicated to Saint Andrew, were ready for occupation in the 1120s. Gleink was settled from Garsten Abbey. The abbey suffered fire damage in 1220, 1275 and 1313, but narrowly escaped destruction at the hands of the invading Hungarians in the late 15th century and the marauding Turks in 1532, although they caused devastation in the surrounding area. Later in the 16th century the Reformation and the spread of Lutheranism caused more difficulties, a trend which only began to reverse from 1575 with the appointment of Abbot Georg Andreas (1575–1585) from Niederaltaich Abbey. The abbey also suffered damage during the Thirty Years' War.
From the later 17th century however more favourable circumstances allowed the development and refurbishment of the premises in the Baroque style, principally associated at Gleink with Abbot Rupert II Freysauf von Neudegg (1709–1735). Abbot Wolfgang Hofmayr, well known as a preacher and a professor in the University of Salzburg, took office in 1762. He was the last abbot: the monastery was dissolved under Joseph II on 21 May 1784.
After a short period of use as a barracks, the buildings were given to the Bishop of Linz as a summer residence. In 1832, at the invitation of the then bishop, a community of Salesian Sisters from Vienna took up residence. No new novices entered the community however after about 1950, and the convent was eventually closed in 1977. Since the dissolution the parochial duties had been carried out by parish priests, but from 1950 were undertaken by the Missionary Order of the Heart of Jesus, who settled and run a boys' home here ever since. The premises today also accommodate a museum of religious objects, ecclesiastical embroidery and so on.
The continuing difficulties faced by the abbey were reflected in the depleted state of its library, which in 1599 contained only 110 printed books and 150 manuscripts. However, in the relative prosperity of the period from the mid-17th century onwards, the library grew, acquiring among other things the manuscript of the Gleinker Weltchronik. It is an illuminated manuscript describing a history of the world based on the Bible. Produced in the mid-14th century, it contains an inscription placing it at Gleink in 1712. This manuscript is now Codex 472 of the Linz University Library.References:
The Kalozha church of Saints Boris and Gleb is the oldest extant structure in Hrodna. It is the only surviving monument of ancient Black Ruthenian architecture, distinguished from other Orthodox churches by prolific use of polychrome faceted stones of blue, green or red tint which could be arranged to form crosses or other figures on the wall.
The church is a cross-domed building supported by six circular pillars. The outside is articulated with projecting pilasters, which have rounded corners, as does the building itself. The ante-nave contains the choir loft, accessed by a narrow gradatory in the western wall. Two other stairs were discovered in the walls of the side apses; their purpose is not clear. The floor is lined with ceramic tiles forming decorative patterns. The interior was lined with innumerable built-in pitchers, which usually serve in Eastern Orthodox churches as resonators but in this case were scored to produce decorative effects. For this reason, the central nave has never been painted.
The church was built before 1183 and survived intact, depicted in the 1840s by Michał Kulesza, until 1853, when the south wall collapsed, due to its perilous location on the high bank of the Neman. During restoration works, some fragments of 12th-century frescoes were discovered in the apses. Remains of four other churches in the same style, decorated with pitchers and coloured stones instead of frescoes, were discovered in Hrodna and Vaŭkavysk. They all date back to the turn of the 13th century, as do remains of the first stone palace in the Old Hrodna Castle.
In 2004, the church was included in the Tentative List of UNESCO"s World Heritage Sites.