TABOR - Tradition and Contemporaneity in the Romanian Orthodox Church
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The Church and the Clergy of the Land of Lăpuş in the struggle for national unity and liberty between 1850-1918
Writing history is an act of great responsibility, because the writer is bound to respect the truth, being a useful tool in uncovering the image of the past, in the service of building the future. It is often said that it is good to know our past to know how we want the future to be. I strongly believe this, and I still believe that if we forget our history, we lose some of the human experience that is useful in shaping the present human existence and personality. This article shows the fulfillment of the Savior’s urge to prove our faith not only by word, but by deed. Thus, the priests not only preached national ideals, but they were actively involved, too often with great sacrifices, in putting into practice what they endorsed and upheld from the pulpit. Through its servants, the Church has thus permanently maintained the connection between the people of Lăpuș and the Romanians beyond the Carpathians. This article reveals the role of the church, through its representatives, the priests, in the national movement of the Orthodox and Greek-Catholic Romanians in Transylvania in the second half of the nineteenth century. One remarkable element is that, irrespective of the religious disagreements, the two Romanian churches in the Land of Lăpuş have mobilized and supported all the actions meant to improve the social, material and cultural status of their believers, as well as their identity, especially when it was about the fulfillment of the centuries-old ideal of all Romanians, namely, the organization in a unitary state. The church was the center around which the entire human existence was gravitating, not only on the spiritual level, which refers to the soul’s salvation, but also on that of ordinary, everyday, worldly aspects. The church was also the institution that kept alive the Romanians’ idea of unity as nation and as language, contributing till the end to the achievement of this ideal through the act of 1st December 1918.