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Parish Church of St. John the Baptist and St. Barbara

Church of St. John the Baptist and St. Barbara was built from larch wood in 1643. Initially, it was a filial church of the parish in Bieliny. A separate parish in Ulanów was established in 1895.

The three-nave church comprises a chancel enclosed with semi-hexagonal walls and adjoined by the sacristy and the treasury room. The porches are located at the front and along the side of the nave. The gable roof features an octagonal bell turret.

The interior is divided by two rows of pillars, and is covered with flat coved ceilings. The rood beam supports a late-Baroque crucifix. The walls are decorated with late-Baroque figural paintings with rococo ornaments, from the 18th century. On the ceiling in the main nave, we can see a decoration which is a copy of a painting by Hans Memling.

Late Baroque furnishings can be seen inside. The high altar dates from 1760 and the three side altars – from 1736–1747. The pulpit was added in the 18th century. The paintings and sculptures date mainly from the 18th and 19th century. In the northern nave there are pictures reflecting the veneration of St. Barbara – the patron of bargemen. A crypt is located in the nave of the church.

The church is surrounded with a wall which comprises an arcaded brick belfry from 1899 and two gates.

The patron of the church - St. Barbara – and a number of pictures and paintings connected with St. Barbara’s life and making reference to sailing are associated with the long-time barging traditions of Ulanów. A devotional association named the Brotherhood of St. Barbara was formed here in 1730. It gave rise to Bargee and Helmsman Guild which emerged 1765. According to historical records, a “large helmsmen’s banner” made around 1730 was stored in St. John’s Church. In the mid-18th century, it was decorated with metal pictures of St. Barbara and St. Anne, which were attached to the material on both sides. The complete banner has been preserved to our days.

The local barging traditions are cultivated by an association called St. Barbara’s Brotherhood of Ulanów Region Devotees.


Photo: Krystian Kłysewicz


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