Church, Szczyrzyc Abbey

Located in the structural basin between the hills of the Island Beskids, the Cistercian church and monastery in Szczyrzyc is one of the oldest monasteries in Poland. It was established in 1234 by the Krakow Voivode Teodor Gryfita who donated his estates in Ludźmierz, Szczyrzyc and Mogilany to the order. Monks brought from Jędrzejów settled in Ludźmierz but some of them soon moved to Szczyrzyc, where the climate was milder. This was where a church, a monastery and outbuildings were built. The abbey was in very poor condition after it suffered raids and fires in the 17th century. The construction of a new monastery and redevelopment of the church started in 1620 and finished in 1644. The Cistercian property was confiscated during the partitioning but the monastery survived even though it was downgraded to a priory. Pope Benedict XV reinstated it as an abbey in 1918 and this was also when the abbots repurchased some of the lost property. After the World War II, the Cistercians were again deprived of their property, which they regained in the 1950s. Cistercian monasteries were commonly built according to specific rules and in places far from human habitation, with the monks’ way of life based on the ‘Ora et labora’ rule meaning ‘Pray and work’. The Szczyrzyc church of the Blessed Virgin Mary of the Assumption and St. Stanislaus was erected on the plan of a Latin cross. The church contains the miraculous painting of the Szczyrzyc Mother of God painted by an unknown artist in the 16th century and crowned in 1983. To the south of the church are monastery buildings grouped around a square garth. Next to the monastery is the monastery museum that since 1984 has been located in what was initially built as a granary. The building had once served as the abbot’s residence. The museum was established in 1954 to display the monastery collections with new exhibits added over time. A map of the world printed in 1905 according to the 13th-century original is one of the curiosities among the monastery’s treasures. The collection includes religious art, militaria, an extensive book collection, ethnographic exhibits and documents, including 13th-century deeds in evidence of donations and land grants for the Cistercians.

Download free VisitMałopolska app
Apple iOS
Windows Phone

Related Assets