Smolnik Greek Catholic Church of St. Michael the Archangel

Formerly Eastern Orthodox, today the church in Smolnik is Roman Catholic and known as the Church of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. It was built in 1791 on the site of several previous churches, the first presumably dating back to 1530, which were destroyed by fire, flooding or Tatar invaders. 

One of only four such buildings surviving today, the church comprises an archaic style of construction used by the Bojko ethnic group. Unfortunately, in 1951 the local Boyko community was forcibly relocated, their houses dismantled and the abandoned tserkva used as hay storage. The church dome and walls were whitewashed at this time, sadly destroying the original wall paintings. Many furnishings were also lost, though some are preserved in the Łańcut Icon Repository.

Although many of the interiors were compromised, faithful restoration works were undertaken here in 1969-73 using only traditional, manual methods, meaning no mechanical tools. Upon completion, religious functions returned to the building, this time under Roman Catholicism. The tserkva was renovated again in 2004-05 and added to the UNESCO list in 2013. Next to the tserkva, standing amidst mature trees, lies a cemetery. Guided tours are available in Polish but booking ahead is recommended.

Price/Additional Info

free admission


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