3rd Degree Researcher, Georgeta Ghionea, PhD, “C. S. Nicolăescu-Plopşor” Institute for Research in Social Studies and Humanities of the Romanian Academy, Craiova;
The village dwellers have always regarded respectful the activities administrated by the priest, from the usual services on each Sunday, or holidays, to the most important events that leave their mark on the individual’s existence. From the second half of the 19th century, the priest has been considered the main factor in the modernisation of the rural world. He got involved in the restoration and endowment of churches, in the founding of parish libraries, school canteens, cultural clubs, he coordinated the educational activity, becoming concerned about the proper functioning of this process. In order to support the common expenses of the parish and the economic growth of the villager, the priest encouraged the believers to found economic societies, vegetable gardens, small orchards, to cultivate flax, hemp and cotton, to raise silkworms and keep bees.
Oltenia, priest, economic societies, popular banks, mutual aid.