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Sycultour

Holy Water of the Assumption of Mary

Holy Water of the Assumption of Mary was made in the first half of the 18th century and is the oldest orthodox holy well in Vojvodina.

Description

Next to the waterbed of Mostonga, in the former Roman trench, near the forest which used to be called Gaj (grove), there is the oldest orthodox holy well in Vojvodina. It is a few kilometres far from Stapar. It was made in the first half of the 18 century, before the establishment of today's village of Stapar in 1752, and it kept its cult as a memory to the old village Bokčinovac, where it probably served as a church. After the construction and consecration of a new church in the centre of the village, its residents continued to visit the old chapel, near the holy well. The chapel does not have any significant decorations, and the residents of Stapar used to keep their family icons painted by local Stapar icon painters in there, which were placed on the benches along the walls. The service has been held twice a year since 1784, on the second day of Pentecost (50th day after Easter Day), and on The Assumption of the Virgin Mary, August 28. The celebration at the holy well had three parts. The first part was an evening service before the holiday. The next day, a holy liturgy started at 10 in front of the chapel, and after that, grains and vineyards were consecrated. The third part of the celebration stopped after World War Two, but it is still remembered by some of the older residents, and this is when believers would go again to the holy well after the feast with musician and would dance kolo until the next day. Here, young people would have a chance to meet each other and many marriages would be arranged thanks to this holiday. Holy Well is officially opened from the second day of Holy Trinity to The Nativity of Virgin Mary. In this period, the holy well was visited by religious women with some problems, diseases or family troubles. They would bring gifts to the Holy Lady every time. They would leave hair pins or hair curls near the well, because it was believed that the well had healing powers against headache. The residents of the village would first go into the chapel of The Assumption of the Virgin Mary to burn a candle for the souls to rest in peace, and then they would go to the small chapel, and finally to the well.

Responsibility

1. Serbian Orthodox Church2. Institute for the Protection of Culture Monuments of Vojvodina Province

Role

Vodice (Holy Well) represent places which can be related to some type of folk religion which blossomed in Vojvodina in the 19th century. The reason for their establishment are water springs which, according to popular beliefs, have healing powers. Official and folk religions have been mixed together, and holy wells have become dedicated to a significantly wider circle of holidays and saints. They have a special significance for the understanding of folk beliefs and folk attitudes towards the church. Since they mainly appear out of residential areas, they significantly contribute to the final landscape formation of certain parts of Vojvodina.Regional importance

Potential usability

Holy Well is still used today for religious processions, authentically reviving the spirit of the past times, tradition and intangible cultural heritage related to rural life. Existing rural events in this place should be organized on the principle of tourist events that could attract more visitors.


ZRC SAZU
CTRIA HCC RoT Občina Jesenice CMS PAT PRA UNSPMF Chamber of Economy of Vojvodina