Over the last two weeks, we have been driving through Lithuania in search of historical sites relevant to our research. We've taken the lesser traveled dirt roads through miles of rolling farm country where there are few houses in sight or maybe a five mile stretch with ten or twenty houses. On the side of these roads, we would see a cross firmly planted in what can safely be considered the "middle of nowhere". Each one has it's own special story. Some have just a date and others have a strong message. The ones from 1991 and prior are particularly fascinating because of their date. Soviet occupation meant religious censorship so these crosses were a clear sign of protest against the silencing of Lithuania's strong Catholic faith. Here are some of the crosses we found:
"Holy Heart of Jesus, may Your Kingdom come to Lithuania" 1990
"Bow your heads, children. Here live your grandparents and parents. They came to know the suffering of Siberia. God's blessings returned them."
Nulenkit galvas, vaikai. Gyveno cia jusu seneliai or tevai. Sibiro kancia jie pazino. Dievo palaima juos grazino.
For the revival of Lithuania 1990
"Let this cross serve as a reminder to those living in this area of the occupation that killed Lithuanians here and in exile (Siberia)."
"Lord deliver us from plague, famine, fire, and war." 1928 1940 1989
"Lord watch over us" 1990
"Let us offer our budding strength to God and our fatherland's welfare" 1938
"Honor and Glory to Jesus Christ" (Tremtiniai=Exiles or those exiled to Siberia) 1957