Angelų kalva – XXI amžiaus krikščioniška liaudies pamaldumo vieta Lietuvoje
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AbstractThe dominant religions in Lithuania are Roman Catholic, Evangelic (Lutheran, Reformat), and Orthodox. The Roman Catholic Church is distinguished by the abundance of faithful and folk piety practices. There are plenty of sacred sites worth visiting in Lithuania (Šiluva, Gates of Dawn, Hill of Crosses). Among sites frequently visited by pilgrims, there are those that are not officially legitimated by the Church as the place of Christian piety, like the Pyramid of Merkinė and the Hill of Angels. The holiness of the Hill of Angels is not confirmed by local Catholic and Orthodox Churches, even though the structures on the hill are consecrated by local Catholic and Orthodox priests. The Hill of Angels is located 2 km away from Trakai town (Vilnius district). Question arise: what is the origin of this folk piety place? The object of the research – the origin of the Hill of Angels and its religious cultural expression. The aim of the research – to reveal the origin of piety of the Hill of Angels. The tasks of the research: firstly, to shortly present the historiography of the Hill of Angels; secondly, to reveal the 21st century religious cultural expression of the Hill of Angels; thirdly, to determine the circumstances on which the Church’s acknowledgement of holiness of the Hill of Angels is possible or feasible. Research methods: retrospective, systemic, analysis and synthesis. The research hypothesis: the origin story of the Hill of Angels in Trakai and its religious cultural expression is the result of local people’s piety in the 21st century which leads to the Church’s acknowledgment of holiness. The research and data presented in the table allow making these conclusions: First conclusion – the historical origin and expression of the Hill of Angels is: a) personal initiative of founders; b) proximity of the location to a church; c) period of foundation (the 21st century – 2009–2014).
Second conclusion – there are three piety practices practiced at the Hill of Angels weaved with five ceremonial rites. By their origin, both folk piety practices and ceremonial rites come from Church’s liturgy. These conclusions support the hypothesis that the origin story of the Hill of Angels in Trakai and its religious cultural expression is the result of local people’s piety in the 21st century which leads to the Church’s acknowledgment of holiness.