Parish Church of St Andrew the Apostle and St Mary Magdalene, Brody
Narodowy Instytut Dziedzictwa pl

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Parish Church of St Andrew the Apostle and St Mary Magdalene

Brody

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The parish in Brody is one of the oldest in Poland. It boasts a highly interesting and beautiful church being an example of wooden ecclesiastical architecture in Greater Poland. The church, erected in the years 1760-1763, has a log structure with double walls. It still has the original Rococo fittings made by Jan Becker, a woodcarver from Leszno, and Mannerist architectural decorations, which are very rare in wooden architecture.

History

In the 13th century, Brody was a castellan’s gord upon the Mogielnica River. The first church in Brody, which was one of the first in the local diocese, was built and fitted out in the 11th or 12th century. The later history of the building is not known. In the mid-17th century, the church was described as a wooden building with a tower and a steeple. It was destroyed by a fire in 1670. The present church (standing on the site occupied by the previous one), completed in 1673, was founded by Piotr Lubicz Kurowski. Owing to the efforts of the parish-priest Jan Stanisław Jabłoński, it was consecrated in 1670. A coffin portrait of the founder hangs in the church. The church fittings, including the altars, were made in 1703 in the woodcarving workshop of Jan Becker of Leszno. In 1731, the wooden sacristy was replaced with a brick one. A porch having a frame structure was built onto the south wall of the nave in 1751. In 1760, new altars were founded by Józef Cywiński. The church was renovated in the years 1935-1939 based on a design by Wiktor Gosieniecki. The floor, the ceiling boards, and the music gallery were replaced then. Moreover, new stained-glass windows were installed. Between 2007 and 2009, conservation works were carried out on the interior, the stained-glass windows, and the entrance door and the statues and graves by the church were restored.

Description

Brody is a village upon the Mogielnica River, in the Lwówek commune, located 25 km to the east of Nowy Tomyśl. The church is situated on an enclosed plot of land by a Renaissance Revival palace and park complex dating from 1892.

The church is oriented towards the east. It has a Latin cross floor plan with a pair of symmetrical chapels. The chancel terminates in a semi-hexagon. The church is adjoined by a sacristy on the north side and a tower and a porch on the west side. The one-ridge gable roof is covered with wood shingles. The chapels have lower two-pitched roofs and the sacristy has a mono-pitched roof. The tower is topped with a Baroque roof with a lantern, covered with wood and sheet metal.

The church is made of wood and has a double wall structure made up of logs reinforced with a frame structure on the outside and covered with weatherboards. The tower has a post-and-beam structure. The sacristy has walls made of brick and covered with plaster.

The church has one nave (with no aisles), covered with a ceiling constructed in the years 1935-1939. The sacristy has a barrel vault with lunettes. The chapels open to the nave with semi-circular arches supported by decorative corbels. At the junctions of the nave with the chapels, there are curved crossbeams, also resting on corbels. The walls have crown moulding having the same decoration as the window surrounds and the rood beam. On the rood beam, there is a sculpture of Christ on the Cross, the Blessed Virgin Mary, and St John, accompanied by the date “1673”. The entrances from the nave to both porches have decorative door frames with carved bead ornamentation.

The oldest object in the church is a holy water font from the 11th century, carved in cobblestone; it comes from the first church in the village. Most of the fittings are in the Rococo style and were made by Jan Becker of Leszno. The main altar, dating from the 18th century, incorporates a painting of Mary the Mother of God, a painting of Mary Magdalene at the top, and paintings of St Adalbert and St Stanislaus, the patron saints of Poland, on the sides. In the south chapel, there are three altars: of St Roch, of the Blessed Virgin Mary, and of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. The altars in the north chapel are dedicated to St Anthony, St Andrew, and Christ Crucified. The north chapel also contains coffin portraits, including one of Piotr Lubicz Kurowski, the founder of the church. The wall paintings, the Stations of the Cross, the pulpit, and the confessionals were made in the inter-war period by Wiktor Gosieniecki. The church has twelve stained glass windows with images of the heads of the apostles, made in the 1930s. There are also fragments of older wall paintings.

In the church yard, there is a wooden bell tower from 1949, containing bells from 1730, a graveyard with the grave of Rev. Robiński from 1828, the Chapel of Mary the Refuge of Sinners, a memorial to 254 people who fell in the war in the years 1914-1920, and a statue of a pilgrim with a cross on his shoulder.

The historic monument may be visited from the outside. Visiting the church inside is possible by prior telephone arrangement. More information, including the Holy Mass schedule, is available on the following website: www.brodypoznanskie.pl

compiled by Radomiła Banach, Regional Branch of the National Heritage Board of Poland in Poznan, 16-09-2015.

Bibliography

  • J. Łukaszewicz, Krótki opis historyczny kościołów parochialnych w dawnej diecezji poznańskiej, Poznań 1858, s.426-9.
  • Drewniane kościoły w Wielkopolsce, koncepcja, teksty i wybór fotografii P. Maluśkiewicz, Poznań 2004, s. 31-32.
  • Katalog zabytków sztuki w Polsce, t. V, z. 14: powiat nowotomyski, Warszawa 1969, s.1-2.
  • A.Jankowski, Kościoły drewniane o zdwojonej konstrukcji ścian w Wielkopolsce, Bydgoszcz 2009, s.165-70.

General information

  • Type: church
  • Chronology: 1670 - 1673
  • Form of protection: register of monuments
  • Address: Brody 130
  • Location: Voivodeship wielkopolskie, district nowotomyski, commune Lwówek - obszar wiejski
  • Source: National Heritage Board of Poland

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