History Files
 

 

Modern Estonia

Gallery: Churches of Rapla County

by Peter Kessler & Lauri Oherd, 30 January 2011

 

 

Part 1: Churches of Hageri, Kohila & Märjamaa

St Lambert's Church

St Lambert's Church (Lambertuse kogudus in Estonian) is in Hageri village, clearly visible from the only main road. Hageri was one of the largest and oldest parishes in the former Harju, Rapla and Juuru regions. The first St Lambert's Church probably already existed by 1221, built by missionaries to Danish North Estonia, although nothing is known about the saint himself. The first records of the church date to 1424, but the building was destroyed by fire on 3 May 1710.

St Lambert's Church

Restoration by Captain von Baer of Sutlema Manor was completed by the end of 1713, with services being held in the manor until then. Repairs were carried out in 1803 and 1822, and reconstruction work was done in 1851, with the vaults and roof being replaced. However, the church was quickly becoming too small for its expanding congregation, so in 1890 the old church was pulled down and replaced with the present Romanesque and Gothic building which was consecrated in 1892.

Apostolic-Orthodox Church of the Ascension of Our Lord in Angerja

The Apostolic-Orthodox Church of the Ascension of Our Lord in Angerja (Eesti Apostlik-Õigeusu Kiriku Angerja Issanda Taevaminemise Koguduse) is at Viljandi mnt 2, on the southern side, immediately east of Luha street and the town of Kohila. In 1897, the government sold off the manors of Kohila and Tohisoo, and a parcel of the land was gained for the church. The cornerstone was laid at the start of construction in 1899, and it was built to the designs of architect Vladimir Lunski.

Apostolic-Orthodox Church of the Ascension of Our Lord in Angerja

With its strongly Russian-influenced styling, the church was consecrated on 1 January 1901. Also called Angerja Church, it was closed in 1950, during the Soviet era, and was used to store fertiliser. It was in a very bad condition (especially inside) when re-opened in 1993 and a lot of work was required to bring it back into use. It is now one of Estonia's very few Apostolic-Orthodox churches to contain a brand new iconic painting, which includes icons of all the saints.

St Mary's Church

St Mary's Church (Maarja kirik) is on the south-west corner of Koluvere mnt and Välja, in Märjamaa. It was erected in the fourteenth century as a fortress church, with defensive positions inside the building, and was the most westerly of its time. It was badly damaged in 1574, during the Livonian Wars. Repairs were carried out on the tower, which closely resembles that of St Olaf's Church in Tallinn. It was damaged again during the Second World War and repaired.

One photo on this page contributed by Lauri Oherd.

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