THE UNIQUE WOODEN CHURCH AND PRESBYTERY COMPLEX (15TH-19TH CENTURY)
The temple in Blizne is an orientated Gothic church built in a horizontal log technique, dating back to circa 1470. It comprises a square-shaped nave, a narrower rectangular chancel at the east end, enclosed on three sides, and a rectangular sacristy attached to it (on the northern side). There are two entrances to the church, enlarged in the course of time: the main entrance in the western wall and the second one in the southern wall. They were originally the same as the portal to the sacristy, decorated with the so-called ogee arch. The windows are located on the southern side of the church (with the exception of one window in the eastern wall of the apse and two small ones in the western wall). The nave and the chancel are covered with a single gable roof of an extremely strong truss structure, known in Poland as the “orchid” truss. The tower, in which an antique bell from 1545 hangs, was added in the first half of the 17th century.
The building was undergoing a number of changes. In the second half of the 17th century the so-called “soboty,” a type of pent roof below the actual roof reaching the bottom of the window frames, were added around the church. A flèche with a small bell was added on the top of the roof. The present flèche dates back to 1745 and replaces the former one, destroyed by the gale. In the same time, a spacious narthex was built in the tower and the main entrance was enlarged.
An overall renovation which changed the shape of the temple significantly was conducted in 1811. The “soboty” were removed, the external walls were given a shake siding and the sacristy was enlarged and raised. A spacious church porch, covering the south entrance and increasing the usable space, was also added. Since that time, no significant changes in the shape of the church have been introduced. Only carpentry works and works connected with the replacement of shingles were conducted. In the 1970s, a wooden picket fence with four chapels, known as the “Popular calendar,” was reconstructed.
The church in Blizne is an example of extraordinary care for its condition and maintenance. The distinctive role of Rev. Stanisław Siuta should be mentioned in this place. Due to its exceptional historical and artistic value, the church was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List in 2003.
The interior of the church is decorated with unique polychrome. The first and at the same time the oldest details on the walls of the church are the so-called “Zacheuszki” (consecration crosses) from 15th century.
The Last Judgment scene from 1549, the biggest scene of that kind in Poland, is the most important element of the painting decoration of the nave. It constitutes a part of the “Poor Man’s Bible,” which was a form of catechesis for simple people. Those paintings are located on the northern wall of the nave and in the chancel. “The Peasants’ Foundation” dating back to 1649 is the collection of paintings founded by the local wealthy peasants. They are situated on the southern and western wall of the nave, on the organ gallery and on the ceiling.
The most interesting elements of the original interior decor:
THE HISTORY OF THE STATUE OF MOTHER OF GOD, QUEEN FULL OF GRACE
The statue of Madonna, dating back to the years between 1515 and 1520, was carved in lime wood and has the features of the post-Veit Stoss sculpture style of Little Poland. The statue was made on the basis of the woodcut by Albrecht Dürer. It was initially a part of the altar’s triptych. In the 17th century the decor of the church was changed. The former altar was replaced by a new one with the painting of the Crucified Christ, and the statue of Mother of God was placed on the pedestal near the altar. It was also carried during processions and pilgrimages. At the beginning of the 20th century it was placed in the loft of the church, where it spent some time. One night, a woman resident of Blizne dreamt to take the statue of the Mother of God and to place it in the hollow of a lime near her house. The parson agreed to do that and since that time people were gathering at the statue, praying the rosary and practicing May devotions. Unfortunately, the flowers and the whole tree caught fire from the candles burning underneath. Fortunately, the statue was saved and a wayside shrine was built at the site of the lime after that. The statue of Mother of God returned to the church only in 1974 after being subjected to conservation, and it is now an object of public worship. A novena to the Mother of God, Queen Full of Grace is held every second Sunday of the month at 3 p.m.
PRAYER TO THE MOTHER OF GOD, QUEEN FULL OF GRACE
O Most Holy Mary, by Your Immaculate conception, the most beloved of all creatures, Daughter of the Almighty God the Father, raised to the heights of His merciful plans. You are a humble and most admirable Mother of Our Lord Jesus Christ, so the Mother of God, as the Word Incarnate, Son of God, Son of Man, our Saviour. You are the most pure Bride of the ineffable Love of the Holy Spirit. Looking at You, Mary, the favoured one, at Your dignity and beauty, I salute You with the words of the Angel: “Hail, Full of Grace, the Lord is with you. Blessed are you among women.” Together with whole Church, I firmly believe that You, as the Mother of the Saviour, are also the Mother of the Church, that you ask the God for all the graces we need. Kneeling before You, Mary Full of Grace, as Your child full of trust, I ask You to obtain for me those graces I need the most, above all that I lived always with the sanctifying grace and fulfilled God’s will. I also ask you to obtain the special graces... (for myself... for my family... for my loved ones and friends... for my parish... for the Holy Church... for my motherland...). May I conclude by thanking You for all the care you gave me until now, the best Mother, and I place myself under Your constant protection through the words with which the whole Church is praying to You: “Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death.” Amen.
Parafia Rzymskokatolicka p.w. Wszystkich Świętych w Bliznem
36-221 Blizne 436
phone: +48 13 430 56 00
Kościół jest udostępniony do zwiedzania w sezonie (kwiecień - październik)
od poniedziałku do piątku w godzinach od 9.00 do 17.00, w soboty od 10.00 do 16.00,
w niedziele od 12.00 do 15.00.
Poza sezonem tylko po wcześniejszym zgłoszeniu i uzgodnieniu.
Prosimy dzwonić na plebanię oraz nie zwiedzać w czasie trwania nabożeństw.
Zwiedzanie wewnątrz, tylko pod opieką tutejszego przewodnika.
||Poniedziałek - Piątek:
18.30 - 19.00
||Poniedziałek - Piątek:
17.30 - 18.00
||Sobota, Niedziela, Święta:
Ks. Kanonik: 13 / 430-56-95