His Eminence Petru, Metropolitan of Bessarabia, consecrated on August 30, the new church of the Larga Nouă community in the Republic of Moldova. The worship place is dedicated to the feast of the “Translation of St Nicholas’ Relics” and it replaces the community church built in 1800 and destroyed in 1954, during the Soviet occupation.
The Metropolitan of Bessarabia was joined in service by three other hierarchs of the Romanian Orthodox Church: His Eminence Casian, Archbishop of the Lower Danube, His Eminence Veniamin, Bishop of Southern Bessarabia, and His Grace Atanasie of Bogdania, Auxiliary Bishop of the Romanian Orthodox Diocese of Italy.
Archbishop Casian explained the significance of a church consecration and spoke appreciatively of the sacrifice of the community in building a church dedicated to a great saint of Orthodoxy, St Nicholas.
His Grace Atanasie of Bogdania spoke of the day’s Gospel, focusing on the spiritual context of the feast and urging the faithful to participate in the church services.
Special prayers were offered during the Divine Liturgy for the beginning of the school year, for the reposed benefactors and the clerics who served the parish.
The Bishop pf Southern Bessarabia thanked the hierarchs, the priests and the faithful for their love, care and generosity in serving or supporting the Church of Christ.
As a sign of appreciation, His Grace Veniamin offered parish priest Constantin Dumitrașcu the eparchial Order of “St John the New of Suceava” for clerics. The hierarch also offered the Order of “St John the New of Suceava” for lay people to Adrian Dundev, the painter of the church.
The benefactors were offered worthiness diplomas.
Archbishop Casian offered the parish a set of liturgical vessels and objects and 100 fully equipped school bags for the children of the parish.
The Larga Nouă Parish includes two Romanian villages, Larga Nouă and Larga Veche, first mentioned in surviving historical documents in 1507.
The Larga community built a wooden church dedicated to St Nicholas in 1800. Its stone foundation still exists, but the church itself was demolished in 1954 by the communist atheistic regime brought by the Soviet occupation of Bessarabia.
After the Republic of Moldova declared its independence from the Soviet Union (1991), and the Metropolis of Bessarabia was reactivated (1992), the community wished to be part of this historical eparchy of the Romanian Orthodox Church, keeping their former patronal feast.
The foundation of the new church was set by Metropolitan Petru on October 20, 1996. After November 1, 1998, Fr Constantin Dumitrașcu became the parish priest and coordinated the building works.
The painting of the church started in 2011 and was made by painter Adrian Dundev, a native of the Larga Nouă village.
After 2018, His Grace Veniamin coordinated the finishing of the painting and the decoration works at the church.
Photo credit: Facebook / Diocese of Southern Bessarabia