Church of St. Michael the Archangel in Novogrudok

Novogrudok

Churches, katolik churches, сathedral, monasteries

The town of Novogrudok is considered one of the most ancient towns of the Belarusian land, founded in the 10th century. That town was the residence of the princes of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, as well as a large trade and a handicraft center. Only the ruins of Novogrudok Castle with the Castle Hill has preserved up to the present time. It is still surrounded by ditches. However, another significant attraction of this settlement is the Catholic Church of St. Michael the Archangel.

Its history goes back as far as 1624, when a wooden church was built in the very center of that town. It was consecrated in the name of St. Jacek – a Polish preacher who had been canonized. A century later, a stone temple, built in the Baroque style, appeared on that place. That Shrine existed until 1751, which became symbolic for it – the temple was heavily damaged in the fire. And only in 1805 it was managed to restore it. The renovated Shrine was consecrated in honor of St. Michael the Archangel, who is the benefactor of Novogrudok lands.

During the reconstruction of that temple, a Catholic monastery was founded nearby, on the premises of which there was a Dominican school. It was famous for the fact that the outstanding Belarusian novelist Adam Mitskevich was studying there from 1807 to 1815.   

The school operated up to 1832 and after the uprising it was closed. And another three decades later, the monastery also ceased to exist.

The Catholic Church of St. Michael the Archangel survived another reform in 1858, as a result of which the architectural appearance of the building was changed and it acquired features of late Classicism. When Polish power was set in Novogrudok in 1922, the status of the church was changed and the temple became a cathedral. Services were held in the cathedral until 1948, but then the Soviet authorities decided to use the Shrine building as a hangar to store grain and other food. In 1976, the Shrine building was burned down again and was heavily damaged, and as a result, the temple was in a dilapidated condition during a decade.

After long restoration works with a use of current materials and technologies, the Church of St. Michael the Archangel lost its historical consummate uniqueness of the appearance. However, the interior of the church stands out for its luxurious sculpting of sacred images and frescoes which have been preserved to our time in almost primitive appearance. Nowadays, at the central altar of the Catholic Church, there is the image of St. Michael the Archangel – the patron saint and the Intercessor of the town of Novogrudok since 1831. This Holy image was painted in the 1650-ies.

Church services have been resumed in the Catholic Church of St. Michael the Archangel since 1993.

The Catholic Church is located in the very center of the town of Novogrudok so that it will be convenient for all guests of the town to visit it.  

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