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The bridgettines

Bridgettines (Latin Ordo Sanctissimi Salvatoris; formally the Order of the Most Holy Savior, abbrevated as O.Ss.S.) - is a monastic religious order of Augustinian nuns, Religious Sisters and monks founded by Saint Birgitta (Saint Bridget) of Sweden in approximately 1350, and approved by Pope Urban V in 1370. The original Bridgettine Order was open to both men and women, and was dedicated to devotion to the Passion of Jesus Christ. But from the XVII century it had become considered only for women. According to the intention of Saint Birgitta and the charter approved in 1378 the order must have consisted of 60 sisters and 25 brothers. The tradition of monastic life in general followed the main rules of the Benedictine charter. The distinctive feature was that the brothers led pastoral and preaching activity outside the walls of monasteries, while the sisters lived in strict seclusion. As time went by the Order were increasing its popularity. In the Middle Ages the Order included about 25 monasteries in most European countries. In Belarus the monastery of the Order functioned in Grodno.

During the Reformation many monasteries were confiscated, including the monastery in Vadstene. In the XVII - XVIII centuries the Order was able to recover partially while continuing functioning as the Women Religious Order.