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Greek Catholic Parish Tserkva of Translation of the Relics of St. Nicholas

Tserkva of the Translation of the Relics of St. Nicholas from Myra to Bari is a Greek Catholic parish church built in 1934. The first tserkva was built in Olchowiec in 1792. It is said, that church was purchased and brought from beyond the Hungarian border. The old building was demolished in 1934 and construction of the new one started, however it was not completed before WWII broke out.

The tserkva was seriously damaged in the autumn of 1944, due to warfare. A shell hit one of the tserkva corners. The iconostasis and majority of the furnishings burnt down. After the war the local population started reconstruction of the church, which was interrupted by the forced resettlement campaign. In 1949 the tserkva was acquired by Roman Catholics. In 1950 the parishioners saved the church from being demolished. Following the “political thaw” of 1956, the church was again restored and then used jointly by Catholics of both denominations. In 2000, after the Greek Catholic Church was officially reinstated, it also reacquired the tserkva.

The log church is oriented eastward. The gable roofs, clad with sheet metal, feature two turrets. On top of the turrets and on the ridge of the roof over the narthex there are crosses embellished with colourful pieces of glass. In the nave and the chancel, we can see half-dome ceilings and the narthex is covered with a beam ceiling.

The icons painted in 1989 were replaced with 18th century icons from the old tserkvas in Ruszelczyce and Leszczawka which were presented to the Olchowiec community.

Near the tserkva there is a stone arch bridge over the Olchowczyk stream, dating from the 1800s.

Religious festivities called kermesz are organised here on Saturday and Sunday closest to Commemoration of the Translation of the Relics of Saint Nicholas (22 May).

Attractions worth visiting here include the Museum of Łamko Culture, created in 1981 by Tadeusz Kiełbasiński in an old Łemko-style cottage.


Photo: Krystian Kłysewicz, Marcin Puc



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