Church of the Holy Virgin Mary of Lourdes

The Church of the Holy Virgin Mary of Lourdes (Polish: Kościół Najświętszej Maryi Panny z Lourdes w Krakowie) is a Roman Catholic church in Kraków, Poland, dedicated to Our Lady of Lourdes. It was founded by the Lazarists, and built in 1892–1894 at ul. Misjonarska 37 street in the district of Krowodrza. It has been a parish church since 1923. In interwar Poland, a polyphonic choir was established by the congregation in 1932. The Mariański Choir has attracted international acclaim for a number of years.[1]

The Holy Virgin Mary of Lourdes, Kraków
Church of Blessed Virgin Maria from Lourdes 4.jpg
DenominationCatholic Church
WebsiteParish homepage
Founder(s)Cardinal Albin Dunajewski
ConsecratedJuly 16, 1894
Architect(s)Stefan Żołdani
StyleGothic Revival
GroundbreakingJune 25, 1892


The corner-stone for the construction of the church was laid on June 25, 1892, although the first Congregation of the Mission already existed in nearby Stradom district in the second half of the 17th century, augmented by the Missionary house built at Kleparz in 1861 with the Seminary founded in 1878.[2] The red-brick church, designed by architect Stefan Żołdani in the Gothic Revival style, was completed in two years under the direction of Cardinal Albin Dunajewski.[2]

The parish was founded on January 1, 1923. Two more parishes were established further apart in Communist Poland. The church was upgraded and repainted several times. Side-altars were added and the presbytery was enlarged. The figure of Our Lady of Lourdes featured at the main altar, and carved in wood, is an exact copy of the Mother of God from the Grotto of Apparitions at Lourdes in south-western France,[2] a major place of Roman Catholic pilgrimage and miraculous healings visited by John Paul II in August 2004.[3]


The church building has a total length of 42.9 metres, with a width of 16.5 m, and a height of 20.8 m (to the top of metal roof) or 45.5 m to the top of the steeple. It consists of a nave with two aisles. The aisles are separated from the nave by a row of pillars and columns. The central nave is 8.5 m wide, with a height of 16.5 m. The aisles are 2.5 m wide. The church has three altars, and a pipe organ by the entrance, supported by metal columns.[2] It was built originally in the 19th century by Otto Rieger of Silesia.[4]

Mariański ChoirEdit

The church is home to the Mariański Choir (Polish: Mieszany Chór Mariański), founded in 1932 by Rev. Józef Orszulik during the interwar years,.[1] It specializes in the music of the Renaissance and Baroque periods, but also performs Medieval and contemporary choral works. The mixed voice choir performs the music of J.S. Bach, W.A. Mozart, J. Haydn, G.F. Handel, as well as Polish composers F. Nowowiejski, A. Koszewski, J. Świder, W. Kilar, J. Łuciuk, H.M. Górecki and others. The choir performs and makes commercial recordings of Christmas carols annually. The proceeds from the sale of CDs are used to support charity actions by the Congregation of the Mission.[5]

The Mariański Choir gives regular concerts, including some at the church itself. It performs at ceremonial functions during national holidays. Also, it participates in festivals across Europe and North America. It has made over 35 foreign trips including tours of Italy (with a performance at Castel Gandolfo), Germany, Belgium, Denmark, Czech Republic, United States, Hungary, and Lithuania. The group has released several recordings, notably collections of traditional songs popular with the audience during Christmas.[5]

The choir has received several prestigious awards including the 2012 First Place award at the Lesser Poland competition of choirs in Niepolomice, the Third Place award at the International Festival of Choirs in 2011, the Bronze Medal of Cracoviae Merenti competition (for overall accomplishments), as well as the Silver Thread and Trophy at the 19 International Festival of Advent Music in Prague in 2009, among others.[6]

Notes and referencesEdit

  1. ^ a b "Historia (Choir History)". Mieszany Chór Mariański przy Parafii Najświętszej Maryi Panny z Lourdes w Krakowie. Stowarzyszenie Mieszany Chór Mariański. 2008. Retrieved December 24, 2012.
  2. ^ a b c d "Historia Parafii (Parish history)". Kościół i parafia (The Church) (in Polish). Rzymskokatolicka Parafia Księży Misjonarzy sw Wincentego a Paulo. Retrieved December 25, 2012.
  3. ^ "Pilgrimage to Lourdes (France), 14–15 August 2004". The Holy Father John Paul II – Travels. The Holy See. 2012. Retrieved December 27, 2012.
  4. ^ "Kościół Najświętszej Maryi Panny z Lourdes". M. Rożek, B. Gondkowa (2003), Leksykon kościołów Krakowa, Verso, Kraków (in Polish). Zabytki krakowa at June 2005. Retrieved December 26, 2012.
  5. ^ a b Stowarzyszenie Mieszany Chór Mariański (2008). "Chór Mariański: Repertuar" (in Polish). Mieszany Chór Mariański przy Parafii Najświętszej Maryi Panny z Lourdes w Krakowie. Retrieved December 25, 2012.
  6. ^ OKN (2011). "Koncert Mistrzejowicki". Mieszany Chór Mariański (in Polish). Kraków: Ośrodek Kultury im. C.K.Norwida. Retrieved December 26, 2012.

50°04′16″N 19°54′46″E / 50.071°N 19.9128°E / 50.071; 19.9128