Preface by Ileana, Princess of Romania to the book:
Romania The Land - The History - The People
by Valerian D. Trifa
The Romanian Orthodox Episcopate of America, Jackson Michigan,1959


Beloved beautiful Romania, lying today so far behind the Iron Curtain! All of us born there think of her as "home". For those who are her ethnic descendants, but who perhaps have never seen her, she is almost a legend. Her frontiers today are prison bars, although they were once like loving, enveloping arms. Her people were joyful and their voices rose in happy song or heavenly praise; today those voices are hushed by fear of the oppressor. Yet, the sound of her call of pain echoes in the hearts of all her children scattered abroad. The image of her beauty is ever present in the mirror of our memories.

Romania's towns are not large, each has adapted to its environment and has a distinct character. There are but few really old buildings standing, except for the churches, yet treasures out of the part are continually dug up which link us to our Daco-Roman ancestors.

For sheer beauty, few other countries can compare with Romania. In the circle of her natural boundaries, the sea, plains, hills and mountains are contained as within a magic cup. From the bird-filled Danube Delta, over the great wheat fields which at harvest time are a veritable sea of gold, to the fruit-covered hills, through the great forest where the Carpathians thrust their granite summits towards the deep blue sky, the eye falls on beauty everywhere.

Anything will grow in Romania's fruitful soil, from the humblest wildflower to the great trees of the forests. The land lends itself readily to agriculture and repays a hundredfold all energy expended upon it.

Nature and the work of man have gone hand in hand blending and echoing each other, be it a small whitewashed cottage, a precious frescoed church, the embroidery upon a woman's blouse, or the shepherd's song echoing the nightingale. Animal life is plentiful, and beneath the rich, dark loam lies coal, gold, copper, iron, salt and oil. Every season brings its own blessing, Winter snows, Spring's awakening, Summer's rich harvest, and the quiet fulfillment of Autumn.

Romania's history is very old; she has undergone much tribulation, but she has never lost herself in her sorrows; rather, she has grown by them into a nation we may well be proud of.

Romania, beloved home of our fathers, we still feel as if thy soil were one with the blood in our veins. May thy children ever be worthy of thee!