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Saint Dimitrie Church, LeuCod 1394

Between the places of worship which are historical monuments from the Archiepiscopacy of Craiova there is also numbered the “Saint Forty Martyr Dimitrie” Church from the Parish Leu III, the county of Dolj.

It was built up in the second half of the XIXth century by the efforts and the good will of the church goers, supported by the wealthiest people from the commune.

On the place where today it is situated, at approximately 200 meters distance towards the valley there functioned an older church. Because of this thing it inherited the popular name of “the hidden church” or “the church from the grove” because of the fact that round about, the area being less liveable, the place of worship was surrounded by much vegetation.

The tradition also says the fact that the place would have been chosen in order to protect the church from the “robberies of the Turks”.

From the old church there are still kept today only some “walls drowned by the waters” (according to the Synodical).

The desire of the Christians from the locality was the principal resort in the activity of building the place of worshop. In the church’s synodical there are mentioned the families of the church goers who were involved the most in finalizing the project: Mazilu, Crângar, Mareş, Brângă, Tănasie, Florescu, Mustaţă, Năditu, Vlădescu, Onel, Stăicuş, Alexie and not lastly the family of the congregation church Ion Băluță.

The passing of the time, also, left its print here, at the Saint Dimitrie Church from Leu. The first restoration was finalized in the year 1922, the place of worship being re-consecrated by the Bishop Vartolomeu Stănescu of Râmnicului. The entire process of re-making the place of worship kept the initial shape of a ship, the wall altar screen and the porch attached to the body of the church and supported by four brick piers, the tower covered by plates which served as bell tower until the year 1932. The painting, executed in oil, was washed again in the year 1953. Unfortunately, today it is covered with a thick layer of smoke, which deposited throughout the time in almost all the church. After the earthquake of 1977, the place of worship suffered serious damages at the level of the resistance structure. For this reason, the entire ensemble was strengthened with a steel belt, re-painted and arranged.

From the beginning and until nowadays, at the Altar of “Saint Dimitrie” Church from Leu serviced nine priest, listed with their names in the synodical of the place of worship: pr. Ion Băluţă, pr. Radu Popa (1922 – 1968), pr. Andrei Ion (1968 – 1969), pr. Nicolae Păunescu (1969 – 1972), pr. Constantin Tuţă (1972 – 1973), pr. Mihail Dincă (1973 – 1982), pr. Aurel Enache (1982 – 1984) and pr. Marian Mitrache (1984 – until present).

Today, because of the efforts of the priest Marian Mitrache, the parish court was rearranged and it was built a new church tower.

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