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Church of Our Lady of Częstochowa and Saint Clement – Zakopane - Obiekt - VisitMalopolska

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Kościół Matki Boskiej Częstochowskiej i świętego Klemensa Zakopane

Church of Our Lady of Częstochowa and Saint Clement – Zakopane

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Kościeliska 4, 34-500 Zakopane Tourist region: Tatry i Podhale

tel. +48 182012441
It is the oldest church in the capital of the Tatra Mountains, expanded by the first parish priest of Zakopane, Father Józef Stolarczyk. It features beautiful decor and masterpieces of highland art. The Church of Saint Clement – now also devoted to Our Lady of Częstochowa – was built in 1848, next to the first Zakopane chapel founded in 1800 by Paweł Gąsienica.

The wooden church was built in the middle of the 19th century on Kościeliska Street thanks to the foundation of Klementyna Homolacsowa, the owner of Zakopane estates. Originally, it was devoted to Saint Clement, commemorating its founder. The northern part is the oldest part of the so-called Old Church. It was erected in 1847 by local carpenter Sebastian Gąsienica-Sobczak. The first Mass was celebrated here on Epiphany in 1848. In 1850–51 the church was expanded, resulting in its final shape. The southern part with a tower was added at that time. A bell tower was erected nearby, but unfortunately it has not survived. Next to it, the builders erected a kindergarten and a parsonage on the site of today's of the Felician Sisters monastery, and built a house for the organist on the opposite side of Kościeliska Street. Larch trees were felled to obtain the logs to build the church. It consists of a single two-part nave and a chancel enclosed from several sides. The interior of the temple is relatively small. The main altar as well as two side altars were built in the second half of the 19th century by folk sculptor from Gliczarów, Wojciech Kulach-Wawrzyńcok. In the 1930s, a copy of the painting of Our Lady of Częstochowa was placed in the main altar, and the temple was subsequently devoted to her. It replaced the portrait of Saint Clement which then was mounted on the left wall of the chancel, whereupon, Saint Clement became the second patron of the church. The interior of the Old Church is also decorated with folk paintings and sculptures of saints – works of highland folk art. A true masterpiece of folk art, located opposite the pulpit, is the  painting by an anonymous artist, of St. Paul falling off his horse while on his way to Damascus. Also dating back to the 19th century are feretories and double-sided bas reliefs of saints as well as oil prints of saints that mimic oil paintings. The small pulpit situated on the left wall of the church is a masterpiece of 19th-century folk sculpture.