Friday, August 10, 2007

Hill of Crosses

These pictures are the reason we went to Lithuania in the first place. Crosses were planted on this small hillock for the first time several centuries ago, probably before Christianity came to Lithuania, so some have (had?) pagan roots. During the Soviet occupation it was illegal to plant crosses (which are planted for everything from celebration of life to mourning death), but people did it anyway. The story goes that everything was bulldozed off the hillock at least 3 times, and the final time it was fenced and a moat was dug around it . . . but there were new crosses by the next morning, anyway. Now, it's estimated that there are over 400,000 crosses at the site, all sizes and materials. It was really, really neat to see.

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