The Valaam Spaso-Preobrazhensky monastery started to raise peacocks in order to get more food and possibly provide some kind of entertainment for tourists and pilgrims. That’s an initiative by Father Mefody, hegumen of the Monastery, Pankraty, wrote in his social media page.
Totally, 20 species now live on the island, and most of them were born here. «If you hear strange screams coming from the Nikolsky priory, don’t be surprised, these are of Farther Mefody’s peacocks», the hegumen wrote. In his words, the most louds screams belong to the bird named The Emperor. One of the birds is named by the Muslim name of Abdullah, the decision that surprised the hegumen, though he doesn’t seem to resist.
Farther Mefody is a Macedonian, he has been serving at the Valaam monastery since 1993.
Raising birds and other animals exotic for Russia is getting more popular in the country’s spiritual establishments. For example, peacocks can be found at monasteries across Russia, even in Siberia.
Read our post about getting to Valaam.
The Monastery has naturally more traditional helpers, for example, cat Kuzya who greets pilgrims at the holy gates of the establishment and smiles at you in the photo below.
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