Vurpar, Romania
Vurpar Street
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Church Life

At six weeks and then again at six months after a Romanian dies a Parastas is celebrated. People gather in the church in a service to help the dead rise to heaven and, afterwards, bread is distributed to symbolize providing nourishment to the departed soul for the journey heavenward. Finally, a luncheon is offered by the relatives of the deceased giving time and place to remember their ancestors and to ponder their own mortality.

Generations of Romanians are buried in the grave yard of the Romanian church in Vurpar and often the stone tells a story and shows a picture of the departed soul. Most graves are well tended by the living with flowers offered to the memory of the dead.


The Romanian church overlooks Vurpar from another hill at the other end of the valley. The view is superb and, like the German church, the Romanian church seems to serve as shepherd and protector from its perch.
From high up on the hills that over look the town it is easy to hear the sounds of the village. There are few motors around to dull other sounds. A distant conversation, the sound of a horse neighing, a chicken crowing, a child laughing, the wind blowing. They are all quite audible on the hill and the dead in their graves can hear it all.
Father Marin is the Orthodox Priest in Vurpar. He not only stood up to the anti-religious communists, but managed to build his church despite their repression and threats. He remains a leader of the community.
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