The project “Redescopera Turismul Monahal Valcean” (Rediscover the Monastic Tourism from Valcea) is a project financed by the Regional Operational Program, primary axis 5-Sustainable Development and Tourism Promotion, Major Intervention Domain 5.3- Promotion of the Tourism Potential and Creating the Necessary Infrastructure, with the scope of increasing the attractiveness of Romania as a touristic destination.
At the beginning of the present century and millennium, tourism appears as the most dynamic sector in the whole world, and, at the same time it is the most important source of new work places.
Nowadays monachism remains the most important and essential part of the Christian-orthodox belief, and the big monastic centers as Athos Mountain and Saint Ecaterina Monastery from Sinai pass through an important resurrection, from the view point of the number of monks who come here and from the view point of the spiritual life. As a consequence, the number of pilgrims increases and the reconstruction of many of the old monastic centers advances rapidly.
Taking as an example the great monastic centers mentioned above, we can say that our project will maintain the same principle of resurrection of the old holy places. Even if there is needed restoration work at some of the monasteries or sketes, these represent a touristic attraction for the visitors because many of the old monasteries are examples of lively inhabited locations and not just some damaged architecture.
We decided to implement this project based on the touristic potential of our zone, specifically taking into account the promotion of the ecumenical-cultural area, especially the Church “Adormirea Maicii Domnului”, Arnota Monastery, Bistrita monastery, Cornetu Monastery, Cozia Monastery, Dintr-un Lemn Monastery, Frasinei Monastery, Govora Monastery, Hurezi Monastery, Saracinesti Monastery, Stanisoara Monastery, Surpatele Monastery, Turnu Monastery, Turnu Monastery, Ostriv Skete, Pahomie Skete and Patrunsa Skete, because the number of tourists and pilgrims show increased potential and because the tourism of the area is poorly promoted.
The objective of our project is to promote and develop the tourism in order to increase the visibility of all the churches, sketes and monasteries and to raise the quality of the touristic services in our area. These represent an important factor in the regional and international promotion of all the places of interests in Romania and the development of the regional tourism.
Our project will have a great impact at the national level, because of the promotion and exploitation of the touristic potential from the area and the international promotion of the various places of interests in Romania and the development of the regional tourism.
The general objective of our project is to develop the tourism and to raise the visibility of the Prundeni county and the neighboring localities, by promoting all the 16 churches, monasteries and sketes from the area and by implementing specific marketing strategies.
The specific objectives of the project are:
Promotion of the touristic potential of the county and of the neighboring localities by increasing the visibility of all the churches, monasteries and sketes of the area, with the goal of spreading the tourism and monastic culture, having regional and international impact
Increasing with minimum 5%, the number of tourists in Prundeni county and neighboring localities by applying specific marketing and promotion actions
Increasing the visibility of the county Prundeni and of the neighboring localities by including the area in touristic tours
Maintaining and creating new work places as a result of increasing the tourism in the area
Increasing profits of the economic agents from the area by stimulating the visitors to spend.
The direct and indirect beneficiaries of the project from the economic, social and cultural perspectives are:
Residents of the county and the neighboring localities, who will beneficiate of new working places because of the economic growth of the agents and of the increasing living standards and they will be able to develop their business in the tourism area.
Tourist all around the country will hear about the area and will be familiarized with the touristic product through various channels as media channels, online marketing and outdoor advertising.
Economic agents from the county and neighboring localities who will register an increased level of profits.
The population, by promoting the values and by increasing the visibility of the region and the promotion of Romania as a touristic destination for foreigners.
Foreign tourists inside Romania as well as those who decide to visit Romania, through the implemented promotion will beneficiate of information about the holy places from our area, being able to know them better.
Although the present project is not part of a major investment initiative, being an independent project, it will definitely entail other investment projects by promoting and supporting the ecumenical tourism, by providing access to the sketes and monasteries from our area.
Specific Activities of the Project
Conducting marketing studies
Within the framework of this project will be conducted two marketing studies. The first one will reflect the best specialized fairs and exhibitions in which we will participate, and the second one will encompass the impact of the marketing strategies used for the promotion of the project’s objectives within the fairs and exhibitions during the development of the project.
Mass Media and outdoor promotion
The touristic objectives will be promoted by creating and distributing the advertising materials (touristic maps, CDs, brochures, flyers, calendars, postcards, guides, banners and posters) and by creating and distributing, at the regional and national level, various radio spots.
On-line promotion / Marketing by internet
The monastic tourism from the area will be promoted online by creating and posting the banners and by writing articles about the objectives of the project, which will be posted on specialized web sites.
Creation of a touristic portal
In order to create a unique identity in the online medium it will be developed a portal/ website which will contain information about the places of interest promoted within the project as well as the traditions, customs and monastic culture from the region. The portal/website will be constantly updated.
Participation to Fairs and Exhibitions
As the project will be implemented, the presence at the most important specialized fairs and exhibitions will be assured, with the goal to promote the objectives of the project and to increase the attractiveness of the region. In the end, reports about participation/ activity within these fairs and exhibitions will be presented.
Râmnic Diocese’s Infirmaries
The Celebration of 510 years of the Râmnic Dioceses’s documentary attestation, and 150 years after monasteries’ secularization, makes us bring out the current role of Vâlcea’s monasteries in various stages of history, given their possession and dispossession of properties, means through which they were able to help their Romanian society and people.
I. Christian Philanthropy: From infirmary to hospital
Hoping in human healing through word, grace and mercy from God, our monk forefathers also cared about the “clay pot “animated by asceticism monastic ritual. Monk life does not preclude treating the physical body, therefor the monasteries’ rulers, obeying the order of the Holly Fathers, organized infirmaries, places of treating sick monks, but especially of caring for elderly monks.
Christ led us to seek Him into the hungry, thirsty, strangers, naked, sick, imprisoned, because helping them we serve Him (Matthew 25, 31-46). The charitable establishment in a monastery was the rescue boat, carrying elders from the Church to “Heaven’s Shore” of divine kingdom.
The Romanian grate monasteries, being endowed with properties and goods, have developed the ability organizing socio - philanthropic activities and especially caring for elderly monks and sick people. From St. Vasile the Great (who founded, at the gates of the city in the year 369, the first hospital called "Vasiliada ") until today, many monasteries were defense fortresses, and cultural-social places.
The Romanian Monasteries, in addition to their spiritual - cultural and family role, served as places for health and care to the elderly and the sick monks from monastery’s territory range . From ancient times are known and attested by documents, the infirmaries from Putna, Neamţ, Argeş (1524 ), Bistriţa (Vâlcea, 1520-1521 ), Cozia ( 1542-1544 ), Vodiţa, Tismana Dragomirna (early seventeenth century ), Sadova (1691 - 1694), Hurezi (1696-1699) and many others, and their important medical and philanthropic role. It is sad to note that after the monasteries’ secularization, during the reign of Alexandru Ioan Cuza (1863), several monasteries in the country were transformed into hospices, nursing homes and prisons, and continued with this state also during communist regime.
This situation was found to Mamu Monastery, which, following the Decree 410/1959, lost 11 parish churches, and it was transformed into the parochial place and inside monastery’s sanctums was organized a home-hospital called "Care and Support Center for the elderly and chronically ill”, which operated until 2006. Through the same decree was abolished also Sărăcineşti Monastery, where the communist regime transformed the compound into "home-hospital for the elderly and chronically ill" despite the freedom gained by our Church in 1989. This improvised hospital continued to survive here until 2007. Râmnic Archdiocese contributed over the centuries to an intense and necessary social and philanthropic activity, both at the monastery‘s Diocesan Center and also for its historical and royal monasteries. In the following we will highlight the history of the Râmnic Archdiocese’s infirmary, limiting only to the space comprised in the current expanse of the diocese corresponding to Vâlcea County.
II. Râmnic Diocese infirmary
1 - Jgheaburi Hermitage infirmary
After research conducted by historians, the first infirmary organized in our country was the one from the Jgheaburi Hermitage (Jghiabul or Zghiabu) in Vâlcea County, founded by Radu Negru (c. 1377 - c 1383 ). The hermitage, with the church dedicated to the “Virgin Birth ", was established in the year 1310, and in 1640 during the reign of Matei Basarab, was restored by the chancellor Matei, then by Bishop Theofil, Bishops Ilarion and St. Antim Ivireanul.
2 -Bistrita Monastery infirmary
Bistriţa Monastery was founded by noblemen Craioveşti and especially ban Barbu Craiovescu (1497-1520). In its centuries of existence, the monastery was helped by many voivode who loved the church and people. Among these founders we mention Holly Voivode Neagoe Basarab (1512 - 1521) which offers many donations and supports painting the church (completed in 1519); Voivode Mihai Viteazul offers him Costeşti Village; Grand ban Preda Brâncoveanu restores the monastery; Voivode Matei Basarab supports the compound with charter, gifts and religious items; Saint Voivode Constantin Brâncoveanu restores the annexes, offers books, the big bell, the doors of the church and religious items; Lord Barbu Ştirbei (1849-1865) completes the restoration of the monastery (1855) started by Lord George Bibescu (1804-1873). The monastery’s infirmary was organized probably due to water sources in the area that had curative properties - some historians say. We believe, however, that was established by the presence of St. Gregory of Decapolis’s relics. It is regarded as “the oldest documented infirmary", built by the founder of the monastery, Barbu Craiovescu.
After founding Bistriţa Monastery (1492 - 1494), Barbu Craiovescu (now monk Pahomie) adorned it with a traesure of great price, the relics of St. Grigorie Decapolitul, brought here in 1497. Miracles maker and healer of diseases, St. Grigorie Decapolitul started being searched by many faithful people seeking spiritual and bodily health. His relics were carried in procession in different places of Oltenia (in 1942, Marshal Ion Antonescu, at the monastery’s request, donates a truck for processions) and Romanian Country, when people were haunted by contagious disease or in drought times. Such a procession was organized in 1765 by the Romanian Metropolitan Gregory II (1760-1787) when Bucharest was hit by a plague brought from Constantinopol. As outlined above, we believe that Bistriţa Monastery infirmary, the oldest documented establishment, was founded due to the presence of the relics of St. Grigorie Decapolitul (healer of diseases also during his earthly life). Certainly, we believe that many monks and sick Christians wanted to be around the holy relics in order to receive God's gifts of health and salvation.
Infirmary’s church dedicated to “Transfiguration”, was built by Barbu Craiovescu between 1520 - 1521, and had added a porch around 1700 - 1710, founded by Adriana Cantacuzino, Şerban Cantacuzino Governor 's wife , during the reign of Martir Saint Voivode Constantin Brâncoveanu, the porch’s painting being made by hieromonks Joseph and Hrantie of "Hurezi Brâncovenesque painting school". We remaind that founder Barbu Craiovescu’s portrait is stored in the infirmary’s church, with his face changed after his monasticism. The church’s patron, its size and the original painting in “deep spirituality meaning " led researchers to consider it " place of prayer for hesychasts monks", implying that the church was built before 1520. Certainly the infirmary’s church was surrounded by buildings where used to stay old and sick people, complex which was not part of the monastery. “From the documents of the XVI century - the XVIII century, which mention bodily and spiritual healings of people from outside, we note the healing of Jianu cupbearer’s son, suffering from “Thermolinico" (typhus). In another document of 1848, June 26, we find that Vâlcea city magistracy brings St. Grigorie Decapolitul relics to end cholera.
In commemoration documents we find thanks for healing thermolinico, epilepsy, psychopaths and plague. „The mild climate, both in summer and winter, fresh mountain air and the lack of cold currents, Bistriţa Monastery’s characteristics, constituted an appropriate environment for the organization of a seasonal sanatorium. In this sense, between 1872 and 1875, a nursing home was operating and dedicated for soldiers’ healing which suffering from various diseases. Therefore, in the monastery were housed and treated several hundred soldiers, some patients with eye disease. In mid-nineteenth century it seems that the infirmary was operating in the Egumenic house, which in year 1864 was in ruins. Also, here was operating Costeşti Village School (1866) and during Independence war (1877-1878), the monastery housed a military hospital organization where they the wounded Romanian soldiers from the front would be treated. But this measure was not limited to this, because in the monastery were brought over 500 Turkish prisoners. For the caring of the patients, were sent to Bistriţa several monks and nuns from other monasteries of the diocese and especially from Hurezi. After the rural hospitals law’s promulgation since 11 June 1881, it was forseen the organization of such medical institution in the monastery - it was instead an unfinished project. Same happened with the Sanatorium proposed by the Abbot Ghimnazie in 1902 an other medical establishments which remained just as project. Instead, it will be established “Teachers Orphanage" functioning between 1903 and 1908.
”In 1915 the Monastic Seminary already existed, children kindergarten (orphans living in the monastery), primary school, secondary school and several beginners workshops”. Bistriţa Monastery was the first monk monastery until 1948, when, by Decision of the Holy Synod of the Romanian Orthodox Church, was converted into a convent. After the Decree 410/1959, it was to be abolished, being arranged here a "School complex for people with disabilities, which, because of poor organization, led to degradation of the facility till abolishment”. The monastery was reopened in 1984, when the communist state returned it to the diocese, being appointed as responsible Archimandrite Veniamin Micle. In 1992 nuns were brought here from Clocociov monastery. The infirmary’s church is the only remaining monument of the entire assembly founded by noblemen Craioveşti, the interior painting being restored between 2001and 2007 by the Department of Historical Monuments.
3 - Cozia Monastery infirmary
Founded by Voivode Mircea cel Bătrân, Cozia Monastery (1382 - 1386) had an important role in the spiritual and socio-political history of Romania. Olt Valley’s monastery, on the pathway between Muntenia and Oltenia to Transylvania, it is one of the oldest in the country and "one of the most important complex of Romanian medieval religious architecture and art”. The monastic settlement went through many tests, but despite unfavorable times, resisted throught God’s will. The monastery’s infirmary is old. Its church, dedicated to the "Holy Apostles", dates around 1542 - 1543, and it was founded by Voivode Radu Paisie (and wife Ruxandra), the soon in law of Saint Voivode Mircea cel Bătrân. As we can see even today, the distance between Mircea’s building and the infirmary’s church, shows that the infirmary is a separate assembly, with buildings around the church housing the elderly, sick monks and eventually the lay persons who came here for care and Christian end. The documents show that in the early twentieth century, there was a building called “Reception House” or “home for the received”. “The word "”received” in Oltenia is synonymous with crazy, troublesome.
This is important because, not in all documents, medical establishments were called infirmary; some are called "Reception house". In the infirmary’s church we find many figures of saints whose eyes are scratched; it is known that this habit is very common in our country, because the result of these "excoriations" mixed with breast milk or unstarted water, is used in eye diseases. In the monastery's museum there is an icon of St. Haralambie, the guardian against plague, in which he is represented, in popular style, mastering plague, and shows the reflection of the disease from that time".
After monasteries’ secularization in 1863, Cozia monastery enters in a state of decline, as in 1879 is converted into prison, penitentiary, that works until 1893. In the early twentieth century, through the financial support of the Church House Administration, restoration works were undertaken for the infirmary’s church: the roof was changed, new windows made of oak and iron were placed, the bell tower was strengthen. Cozia infirmary had a long life if we look at the monastery newer notes: "This establishment belongs since the beginning to Cozia the Holy Monastery, and in time, being crumbled in the years 1964-1965, it was renewed as seen”.
4 - Hurezi Monastery infirmary
The beautiful Hurezi Monastery, founded by Martyr Saint Voivode Constantin Brâncoveanu (1688 - 1714) between the years 1690 and 1697, also had infirmary, construction commenced prior to the completion of the big monastery, around 1696 and finished in 1699. During the life of the martyr founder, Hurezi Monastery became a powerful center of spirituality and Christian culture, as it was desired and supported by St. Constantin Brâncoveanu. Infirmary’s church dedicated to “Assumption of Mary” was founded by Mrs. Maria Brâncoveanu, wife of the Voivode, "for the good memory of his ancestors".
Since that time were kept several inscriptions and pisania that includes the following: "Wishing and following all the good deeds and blagocestenia Maria the enlightened lady, her husband Constantin Basarab, and as her husband and lord, the great church in honor of the great kings Saints Constantine and Helena, from the ground they built and embellished it, so his Majesty, in honor of God Virgin Mary and our Lady, have built this holy infirmary church, so that the forefathers’’ name would remain forever, in the day 21 of September year 7205 from the building of the world, in their 8th year of reign”. The Church’s construction plan is composed by altar, sanctuary and veranda, lacking narthex. The painting, completed in 1699, is authored by Preda and Nicolae, the paint being made during Ioan Abott’s times.
The Holy place suffered various damages by the Turks (1787-1788) and harsh times, but each time was restored. Located in monastery’s east side, the infirmary is neighboring the cemetery, convincing some historians to say that the church was only a sanctuary which served for funeral events. Other historians emphasizes that "the infirmary had profound humanitarian role, providing assistance not only for old and sick monks but also for other poor lay people in need". This results also from the excavations made in „the infirmary’s yard, where skeletons were found that were not buried according to typical monastic ritual (with brick under their heads and with wrapped robe), but according to the lay ritual (in the coffin)".
The presence in the monastery of the relics of saint healers Fevronia, Procopius and Pantelimon signifies the coming of the sick for healing. Therefore the infirmary had church, living rooms and all it’s needed for such a settlement. "The sanctums also have no inscription, but their way of building reminds us of Brâncovenesque era (1690-1694), when Hurez was built, being made the same as the sanctums, the only difference being that here, at the infirmary, there is no arched room, while in the monastery all the top row sanctums are made this way”. The properties (grape vineyards, forests, mills) donated to the monastery by Saint Voivode Constantin Brâncoveanu certainly helped monks to maintain the establishment. "The sanitary law from 1881 foresees the first organization of rural hospitals in Romania, which, until the construction of own buildings, operated in monasteries. As a result of this act, at the Hurezi monastery’s infirmary was installed a hospital with 40 beds for the patients of the surroundings“.
5 - One Wood (“Dintr-un Lemn”) Monastery infirmary
Monastic settlement, founded by enlightened Voivode Matei Basarab, governor Preda Brâncoveanu and saint Voivode Constantin Brâncoveanu, ruler Ştefan Cantacuzino (1714-1716), One Wood (Dintr-un Lemn) Monastery is one of the most precious jewelry of Romanian monastic adornments. The Monastery complex consists of the wooden church, the wall church, the cemetery, the Brâncovenesc Palace, museum and the sanctums. Currently is under construction a new, monumental, church. We don’t have many testimonies about an infirmary existing at One Wood Monastery, but certainly, around the miraculous icon of the Virgin Mary, was founded a charitable institution for suffering people.
Therefore, it is considered the testimony that the infirmary’s church was founded by Voivode Mircea Cioban’s daughter (1545-1554, 1558-1559) and Mrs Chiajna Ancuţa, the one who would have brought the Icon to One Wood Monastery. Virgin Mary’s historical icon image, miracles maker, existing in a nunnery, attracted many sick women, willing to heal. The wooden church has a rich history, being rebuilt several times, the current appearance, with small restorations, dating from 1814 (when it accidentally burned); among those who rebuilt the church over its existence, is included Constantin Iancu, son in law of Constantin Socoteanu († 1777), who due to his love for Virgin Mary, rebuilt the sanctuary after it burned. "Initially, the sanctums were surrounding the church from all sides. Even near the wooden church, until 1814, there was a housing complex for elderly and sick nuns. Over time were made several changes. Likelihood, at least the current foundations belong to Matei Basarab era”. Despite unfavorable times, the monastery found resources for monastic life, but also to help the poor and sick people. Considered protector of pilots and sailors of our country, Christ’s Mother gathers at One Wood Monastery honored who honor Church and love God. Among monastery’s founders is mentioned General Colonel Paul Teodorescu († 1981), former Minister of Air and Marine, who in the twentieth century rebuilt “One Wood” (Dintr-un Lemn) Monastery.
6 - Govora Monastery infirmary
Known throught the printing press built (after 1635) by Voivode Matei Basarab and his “Small Code of Laws" (1640), Govora Monastery dates, according to historians Giurescu, from Voivode Mircea cel Bătrân times. The main builder of the church is Voivode Radu the Great (1495-1508), the one who raised and embellished the church. Famous Literacy Centre in the 17th century, Govora monastery also had an infirmary built most probably during the time of abbot Ilarion (1728-1732), when a small church dedicated to St. John was built in the west of the main premises. In 1810, Govora Monastery, together with other monasteries (including Arnota), were appointed as metoc monasteries of "Sick Foreigners Hospital, established near Bucharest, near late Mavrogheni’s fountain, today Pantelimon, after the plague era during prince Caragea".
The documents state that all possessions of the monastery passed into the “custody of Foreigners Hospital”. The earthquake from 1829 affected Govora Monastery, along with its infirmary: "although it is recently built, as shown, but being placed under the shore and unsettled in vigorous grounds, has cracked in most places, as it is shown outside and will not be slow fall". The monastery was also damaged by other earthquakes in 1940, 1977 and 1986. From the beginning, it was a friary until 1959 (by Decree 410), when it became monastery of nuns. The small church was destroyed in the meantime and only the inscription kept in the museum mentions the infirmary’s existence.
7 - Râmnic Diocese’s infirmary
Eparchial Centre’s infirmary
Râmnic Diocesan’s Center also had a philanthropic-medical establishment. Writing about Râmnic Diocese’s history, Ghermano Dineata Archimandrite said regarding the infirmaries that they "usually were placed outside the enclosure, near old buildings that housed the old and ill staff, as well as those who had permanent employment in their community: cooks, housekeepers , caretakers and those with household tasks". The founder of the infirmary’s church is Bishop Clement (1735-1749), raising the sanctuary lasting between 1745 and 1746. The church was built as a ship with open porch, tower (which today no longer exists), wall iconostasis Byzantine style paintings.
At the entrance, above the door is written in stone the following inscription: "This holy and godly Church which is called Infirmary, in order to honor and celebrate the Assumption of the Virgin, is built from the foundation and labor and in all expense of his Holiness bishop Kir Climent, and also The Great Church, raised again by His Holiness, and paintings were adorned in the days of great Voivode Io Constantin Necolae. Steward being Spiridon Monk. Oc. leat 20 7254 (1745)”. Being arranged with houses and annexes, the diocese’s infirmary was the most important institution of its kind in the eighteenth century. Even if the infirmary’s houses were damaged by earthquakes and the fire of 1847, they “served as a hospital for Independence War’s wounded soldiers (1877-1878)”. In the infirmary’s houses was later organized "Church Singers School" and then became again sanctums.
St. Calinic from Cernica, when he was bishop of Râmnic (1850-1868), rebuilt the whole diocesan Centre affected by fire in 1847, also taking care of the infirmary and adjacent houses. Before becoming Bishop of Râmnic, when he was the abbot of Cernica Monastery, St. Calinic "built, around 1840, an infirmary in the monastery’s isle, dedicated to caring the sick monks". With joy we find that the the Eparchial Centre’s infirmary, today the old infirmary’s complex, is represented by the foundation of Bishop Climent (the curch) from the 18th century, also by the surrounding monastic houses. The assembly of monastic infirmaries from Râmnic Diocese represents the church’s interest for the bodily and spiritual health of monks and believers. Although it was not stated before, we should mention that the infirmaries also existed at Arnota, Frăsinei, Turnu or Surpatele, but unfortunately we don’t have more information.
Staying in the context of Râmnic Diocese philanthropic work, we will refer further on to Bishop Bartholomew Stănescu’s social and philanthropic work, who preached here between 1921and 1938. Romanian Orthodox bishop, with theological studies in the country and sociological, law and theological at Sorbonne, Bishop Bartholomew learned a lot about the social and philanthropic activities of Roman Catholic Church, ideas which he wanted to put into practice since the beginning of his helm in Râmnic.
He established "social Christianity" through which he wants to solve the social problems of the dioceses, basing on the Christian doctrine of the Church. Bishop Vartolomeu worked very well in social activities with Patriarch Justinian Marina, in that time a priest in Râmnicu Vâlcea, the patriarch taking inspiration in his future actions called “social apostolate”. Driven by what he saw in the West, Bishop Bartholomew “launched the idea that the Orthodox Church should undertake the social activity of the State”. The theoretical side of the social activities is concretized by the Hierarch of Râmnic in two volumes he published and in several studies and articles. It begins with “Short social Christianity trials”, Bucharest (1913) and continues with “The woman as social factor”, Râmnicu Vâlcea (1936), study that contains conferences dedicated to Christian women from the Dioceses aimed at their social - religious motivation to support the Church in its religious, cultural and social-philanthropic activities.
The message of this book being current, we reprinted it in 2011 under a new title "Women in the Church, the family and society”, with occasion of the “Homage Year of Baptism and Matrimony’s Sacrament" in Romanian Patriarchate. As for the practical point of view, Bishop Vartolomeu founded the society “Renaissance” had a magazine with the same name. In this society contributed all dioceses’ priests, in order to revive and animate Christian family’s life from the moral, cultural and social point of view. “Vartolomeu immediately took the initiative of regenerating the dioceses through establishment of “moralizing advices”, parochial centers, cultural settlements and missionary works. Each parish needed to have a library at the disposal of the faithful, church choir, canteen for the poor, and had to organize conferences or settlements. The priests had to be perfected in the so called parochial circles. Funding for social activities of the Church came mostly from its own resources.”
He established various taxes for the priests with disciplinary charges, founded o printing house at Cozia Monastery (1927-1934), a Singers School and re-established Theological Seminary St Nicholas for the preparation of future priests.
A brave step was the establishment of “Priests’ popular banks” inside the cooperative system, through which was ensured the money for the old priests or ones who were in need, also for financing social canteens or other activities. All these necessary, beautiful and fruitful activities ended with the forced retirement, caused by sickness, of Bishop Vartolomeu, in 1938. The administrative changes through which Râmnic Dioceses went (its abolition in 1939 and establishment of Oltenia, Râmnic and Severin Metropolitan Church, based in Craiova, 1939-1945), as well as the communist regime, didn’t allow the continuation of the social-philanthropic actions. Only after 1989 these activities were restarted, under the shepherding of His Eminence Gerasim, Archbishop of Râmnic.
At the Diocesan Center was arranged a medical (dental) office with social ramifications, a social canteen that ensured food for 80 poor and sick persons, in the parishes were founded associations and foundations cu social-philanthropic role, and, in partnership with the Dioceses, develops such activities with various foundations (such as Foundation “Heart for heart”) and associations (such as “Christian Orthodox Women League”).
The medical and social-philanthropic extend of today’s Romanian Orthodox Church has therefore its roots in the merciful work of old centuries monasteries’ servants, and continues through the parishes and the monastic settlements, creating a holly bond towards accomplishing the word of Jesus Christ: “True I tell to you, because you made to one of these brothers of Mine, too small, you made to Me” (Mathew 25, 40).
† Emilian Lovişteanul Episcop Vicar al Arhiepiscopiei Râmnicului
† Gherasim Cristea, Episcopul Râmnicului, Istoria Eparhiei Râmnicului, Edit. Conphys, Râmnicu Vâlcea, 2009, p. 387.
Ibidem, p. 394.
Pr. Ion Vicovan, Da•i-le voi s• m•nânce, • lantropia cre•tin• – istorie •i spiritualitate, Edit. Trinitas, Ia•i, 2001, p. 145.
Mircea P•curariu, Istoria Bisericii Ortodoxe Române, vol II, Bucure•ti, p. 227, apud † Gherasim Cristea, Episcopul Râmnicului, Istoricul M•n•stirii Horezu, p. 67.
Dr. Romulus Popescu •i Dr. Irina Popescu, op. cit., p. 895.
Arh. Ioan D. Trajanescu, Bolni•a M•n•stirii Hurezi, în „B.C.M.I”, 1910, an III, p. 71.
Pr. Ion Vicovan, op. cit., p. 146.
Rasofora Tecla Fuioag• •i Rasofora Teodosia Barac, Monogra• a M•n•stirii Dintr-un Lemn, Edit. M•iastra, Târgu Jiu, 2009, p. 63.
Ibidem, p. 127.
C.C. Giurescu, Dinu Giurescu, Istoria Românilor, vol. II, p. 87, apud † Gherasim Cristea, Episcopul Râmnicului, Istoria M•n•stirii Govora, Râmnicu Vâlcea, 1995, p. 12.
Ibidem, p. 88.
Ibidem, p. 18.
Ibidem, p. 54.
Ibidem, p. 19.
Arhimandrit Ghermano Dinea••, Vicarul Episcopiei Rîmnicului •i Arge•ului, Episcopia Rîmnicului •i Arge•ului – scurt istoric, Rîmnicu Vîlcea, 1969, p. 23.
† Gherasim Cristea, Episcopul Râmnicului, op. cit., pp. 277-278.
Arhimandrit Ghermano Dinea••, op. cit., pp. 27-28.
Ibidem, p. 281.
† Gherasim Cristea, Episcopul Râmnicului, Istoria Eparhiei Râmnicului, Edit. Conphys, Râmnicu Vâlcea, 2009, p. 214.
Prof. dr. Sorin Oane,„Epopeea” Episcopiei Râmnicului Noului Severin, în „Historia”, revist• de cultur•, Bucure•ti, VII, nr. 61, ianuarie 2007, pp. 14-15.
Ibidem, p. 15.
Ibidem, pp. 15-16.
ROMANIAN TOURISM FAIR 14-17 NOVEMBER 2013 ROMEXPO, BUCHAREST In the period 14-17 November, ROMEXPO organized the 30th edition of Romanian Tourism Fair, event that built for four days the reality of autochthonous and abroad tourism.
TOURISTICA FAIR 22-24 NOVEMBER, CLUJ-NAPOCA In the period 22-24 November, in Cluj-Napoca took place the IXth winter edition of Touristica Tourism Fair, event organized by Libero Events. One week after the Romanian Tourism Fair from Bucharest, holidays agitation and fever moved to Cluj where each of those present competed in offers and discounts. At this event attended 57 exhibitors: travel agencies, hotels, pensions, associations, localities and areas financed by REGIO programs, among them was included Prundeni that promoted the project "Redescopera Turismul Monahal Valcean" (Rediscover monastic tourism from Valcea), SMIS 26832. There were present around 12,000 visitors according to Libero Events, a quite consistent presence.
“SEASIDE-DANUBE DELTA STOCK 2014” Tourism Fair Constanta 03 September 2013 Tourism Promotion and Development Association SEASIDE - DANUBE DELTA held the VII Tourism Fair edition of “SEASIDE-DANUBE DELTA STOCK 2014” Tourism Fair on September 3 at Exhibition Place Constanta.
EXPO HOLIDAY TOURISM FAIR APRIL 18-20, 2013 PLOIESTI The sixth edition of EXPO HOLIDAY Tourism Fair was held on 18-20 April 2013 at the Palace of Culture in Ploiesti. Prundeni participated in this event in order to promote the 16 churches, convents and monasteries presented in the " Rediscover Valcea monastic tourism " project.
SUMMERY TOURISM FAIR ARAD Between 18 - 21 April 2013, Expo Arad International organized the 9th edition of the fair “SUMMERY" fair tourism and leisure activities. TOURISM FAIR SUMMERY is an important event for the tourism industry, which has proposed to bring together specialized companies, organizations and associations, travel agencies and tour operators, airlines, cultural institutions that promote, in a professional way, Romania's tourism potential and beyond.
BAIA MARE INTERNATIONAL TOURISM FAIR 5-7 April 2013 Summer edition of this event took place on 5 to 7 April 2013, the stands of the participants being located on the first floor of the Gold Plaza shopping center. Exhibitors were from the country and from abroad, the offers and promotions were very advantageous, as organizers reported.
TRANSYLVANIA TOURISM FAIR 29 - 31 MARCH, 2013, THE SIXTH EDITION OF BRASOV A.N.A.T. organized in Brasov, the sixth edition of "Transylvania Tourism Fair" (TTF) on 29-31 March 2013 in Brasov Business Park. Brasov Business Park was opened in 2011 as the exhibition center, in May with the fourth edition of TTF. TTF, as part of ANAT Fairs Calendar in 2013, addressed the tourism authorities and professional associations, travel agencies and tour operators, tourist resorts, spa complexes, hotels and hotel companies, hostels, lodges, camps, publishers and publications on tourism, banks and insurance companies, airlines and others. The event received appropriate media coverage (print and television) and during it were organized a number of competitions, workshops / discussions on topics of general interest events.
TOURISTICA TOURISM FAIR 22-24 MARCH 2013 The eighth annual Tourism Fair Touristica of Cluj-Napoca, was held March 22-24, 2013 at Polus Center Cluj-Napoca. During the three days of the fair, the 70 exhibitors, Prundeni included, promoted various destinations both in country and abroad, offers for adventure tourism, tourism of treatment, cultural tourism and business but not finally Prundeni monastic tourism promoted within the project "Rediscover Valcea monastic tourism."
ROMANIAN TOURISM FAIR 14-17 MARCH 2013 ROMEXPO BUCHAREST Between 14 and 17 March 2013, Romexpo Exhibition Centre held the XXIX edition of the Romanian Tourism Fair. The official opening took place on 14 March in the presence of Mrs. Maria Grapini - Minister for SMEs, Business Environment and Tourism. The first edition of this year saw a number of firsts in the market for tourism fairs. Thus, in addition to a record number of exhibitors (275 companies from Romania and abroad), the event brought ROMEXPO for 4 days over 30,000 visitors. The biggest tourist event of spring received more than 15,000 sqm. exposed area.
HOLLIDAY FAIR 08-10 MARCH 2013 CLUJ-NAPOCA Between March 8 to 10, took place in Expo Transilvania, the fourth edition of the Holiday Fair, the largest tourism fair in Transylvania. This year was signed a partnership with ANAT and the fair received the confidence of the largest Romanian tourism association who selected the Holiday Fair this year as a partner in Cluj. Expo Transilvania, the largest exhibition space in Cluj-Napoca, offered 3,500 sqm of space dedicated to promoting tourism among the various stands, among which Prundeni with the project "Rediscover Valcea monastic tourism."
BACAU TOURISM FAIR 01-03 MARCH 2013 Bacau Chamber of Commerce and Industry organized during March 1 to March 3, at Central Plaza Bacau a TOURISM FAIR. At the spring edition of this event, on an exposed surface of over 1,200 square meters, attended over 60 companies from across the country, which presented their touristic offers. It was estimated a total of 4,000 visitors interested in the topic of the event.
Prundeni, Valcea County was present at the following tourism fairs to promote the objectives of the project „REDESCOPERA TURISMUL MONAHAL VALCEAN” (Rediscover the Monastic Tourism from Valcea) SMIS code 26832:
1. TOURISM FAIR “SHOP-UL DE VACANTA” - TIMISOARA 09-11 NOVEMBER 2012
2. ROMANIAN TOURISM FAIR – ROMEXPO BUCURESTI 15-18 NOVEMBER 2012
6. ROMANIAN TOURISM FAIR – ROMEXPO BUCURESTI 14-17 MARCH 2013
7. TOURISM FAIR TOURISTICA - CLUJ NAPOCA 22-24 MARCH 2013
8. TRANSILVANIA TOURISM FAIR - BRASOV 29-31 MARCH 2013
9. TOURISM FAIR BAIA MARE 05-07 APRIL 2013
Prundeni stand was visited by a large number of visitors interested in the objectives pursued in the project, the main point of attraction being the promotional materials distributed, especially the movie with the presentation of the objectives pursued, that run on the screen at the stand. The stand visitors belong to different categories: Romanian or foreign tourists, residents of the respective cities, residents from other parts of the country, representatives of tourism companies or travel agencies. Also people who have passed through our stand belong to several categories of age, education, sex, family status and monthly incomes, according with the questionnaires completed on these events.
Prundeni was present at the 7th edition Tourism Fair view more.
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