Meet Fr. Marin Trandafir Roz, the first Roma Orthodox priest in Cluj County

The 27-year-old Marin Trandafir Roz is the first Roma Orthodox priest ever ordained in Cluj County. He was ordained to the priesthood at the beginning of this year by the local Metropolitan Andrei Andreicuț.

During a bilingual Divine Liturgy marking this year’s International Romani Day, Father Marin concelebrated with the Orthodox Metropolitan of Cluj offering prayers in Romanian and Romani languages.

A father of two children, father Marin Trandafir Roz was ordained in January 2019 and appointed a dean of the Nativity of St John the Baptist Parish in Turda, where Metropolitan Andrei Andreicuț served as parish priest for several years back in the late 1970s and the first 1980s.

‘I studied at the Seminary in Cluj, I lived in a dormitory because I did not have time to commute. During the faculty, I was a dedicated student, and my behaviour was, I say, irreproachable. I have always tried to change people’s perception of the Roma, and I think I have partially succeeded.’

‘I am the first Roma priest in Cluj and I serve the Roma communities in the Turda and Campia Turzii municipalities. This church is very important for us, the Roma, but also Romanians come here to pray. We all live in peace and harmony,’ Fr Marin told Adevarul.

The priest referred to the bilingual Divine Liturgy celebrated on April 6, saying that ‘several answers were given by the choir in Romani language, and when it was my turn, I said the ecphonesis in Romani language.’

Fr Marin announced that bilingual Divine Liturgies will continue to be held in the parish.

‘I understood that I will receive the text of the Divine Liturgy in Romani language from the Patriarchate. I don’t know when, but I understood they’re working on it. There was a text written by an Ursar. We are divided into several branches. Now it will change, because the dialect spoken by the Ursars is not very well known here by the Roma in Transylvania.’

The priest told Adevarul that he is currently working on several social projects for the Roma community in Turda and the surrounding areas, and that it is possible that they have EU funding.

Photography courtesy of Facebook / Metropolis of Cluj, Maramureș and Sălaj

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