Thursday, July 24, 2014

Let's Visit Mănăstirea Plumbuita - the "Lead-Sealed Monastery" in Bucharest

Our Wedding at Plumbuita

Mănăstirea Plumbuita means "The Lead-Sealed Monastery." It's a place near and dear to my heart, because it's where my wife and I were married back in 2005. And, in my mind, it was the setting of key scenes of my novel A Place of Brightness.

Mănăstirea Plumbuita is situated in the north-east quarter of Bucharest, Romania, on a peninsula within Lacul Plumbuita (Plumbuita Lake). It's
Aerial view of the monastery
a monastery that has been in continuous operation since the year 1560. It's called "Lead-sealed" (Plumbuita) because in the very early days, the church on the site was roofed with lead tiles (since then demolished and rebuilt). No current building on the premises has lead tiles. But the name stuck. For over 400 years.

In my novel, several key episodes take place at a monastery called Mănăstirea
Sfânta Treime. This means "Holy Trinity Monastery." But Mănăstirea Plumbuita was the place these scenes actually happened in my mind's eye. 


To the left you see the current church, built in the 18th century, over the spot of an earlier edifice. Early in my novel, on old monk is described as praying there. 



The church is a place with dark, hand-painted walls, likely darker from hundreds of years of incense and candle residue. To the right is what the inside looks like. 

In my novel, I describe how the monastery is surrounded by twenty foot brick walls, with massive wooden doors for entrance. To the left is what I was actually describing, the gate below the bell tower of Plumbuita, all of which was built in 1802.



The monastery operates a free clinic and pharmacy for low-income families. Please visit their main website (it's in Romanian but Google translate will do a good enough job) to learn more and donate to their worthy ministry.


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