Photographer's Note

Inside the new Orthodox Church in Berat City, so new it is/was undecorated. The Albanian Orthodox Church is an independent religious institution from 1922 and recognised as autocephaly by the Patriarch of Constantinople in 1937.

Like most things Albanian the story of the Albanian Orthodox Community and their Church has been an uphill struggle with many regional political and religious powers unwilling to accept their very existence. Yet this community has given the Albanian cause some of its most prominent patriotic figures who did not spare their lives for Albania.

The church has seen a revival from 1990 when religious practicing was allowed in Albania (after being banned by the communist regime) but given the overall nonchalant attitude of Albanians towards the religions in general chances are that this new church will only be full at Christmas and Easter.

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Additional Photos by Aleks Gjika (agjika) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 103 W: 39 N: 516] (3177)
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