Saturday, July 6, 2013

13: The Orthodox Church

As far as religion goes, Moldova is very nearly a monoculture. Almost everyone within the country identifies as an Orthodox Christian with very few others identifying as jewish, catholic, baptist, and rarely anything else. This creates a situation in the culture where religious, national, and local holidays and traditions blend together.

There are actually two churches in my village. I was standing next to one church as I took this picture of the other church on the other side of the village.

Every village has its own church and a priest, although sometimes they may share a priest with a nearby village and the priest will visit one village on one sunday and the next village the next sunday.

This is the church in my district center, Falesti.
The priest is very involved with the community and you can often see him at the market or at different events such as the first day of school. He also comes to the school once a year with a bucket and douses everyone in the room with holy water as he says prayers. As soon as he comes in the room all the students know to throw their books (and other valuables) underneath them so they don't get wet in the process.

Also as I mentioned before there is usually an icon in every classroom and students are usually required to take religion classes as part of their curriculum.

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