Polish Orthodox Church of the Birth of the Holy Mother

  ul. Św. Mikołaja 40 ,   Old Town          (+48) 71 344 69 16     more than a year ago
The history of this unique Polish (not Russian, mind you) Orthodox church goes all the way back to the 13th century when it was originally known as St. Barbara’s - a simple cemetery chapel serving the parish of St. Elisabeth’s Church. Over several reconstructions and the addition of a vestry and chancel, St. Barbara’s eventually emerged as the first Protestant pulpit in Wrocław, becoming the seat of a separate Protestant parish some centuries later. Keeping up with not only the religious but aesthetic trends of the times, the decor dressed up in Baroque and later Neo-Gothic duds before being almost obliterated during World War II, when it also saw most of its treasures disappear. Restoration lasted until 1963 when it was handed over to the Polish Orthodox Church not looking noticeably different from most of Wrocław’s Roman Catholic temples aside from being very yellow (there was a paint promotion that week). With no gilded domes the denominational distinction is made by the interior, with the most immediate observation for visitors being the lack of pews; masses are conducted standing, despite sometimes lasting for several hours. Of note is the Gothic iconostasis under the high, vaulted ceiling and the Byzantine-style stained glass, while ancient stone epitaphs flank the entrance.


The church is open only during daily devotions at 9:00 and 17:00; Sun 8:00, 10:00 and 17:00. If you want to visit outside of those times you may need to call in advance.


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