The Franciscan church is one of the first brick buildings in Krakow and is located in the old district of the city. The church is a very popular tourist attraction due to the famous ‘’God the Father’’ stained glass window, located on the building’s facade. It is also said to be one of Pope John Paul II favorite places of worship. The church is located on Franciskanska street.

History

The Franciscan church was founded by Duke Henry II in the 13th century and was made to honor of the Franciscan monks that moved to Krakow from Prague. The church was declared and dedicated for St.Francis of Assisi, founder of the Franciscan order in 1269. Saint Maximilian Kolbe was a well known Franciscan monk that lived in the Franciscan church in 1919. During the German occupation in September 1939, when the Wawel Cathedral was closed, the Franciscan church was used as a place of celebrating liturgy in the place of the cathedral. The four hundred year Franciscan determination was rewarded in 1920 when the church was completed.

Architecture

The Franciscan church was built between 1237 and 1269. In the 15th century, the church’s construction was finally finished. Unfortunately, the Franciscan church burned down in the middle of the 19th century due to the great fire of Krakow. However, the church was later rebuilt to what you see now.

The architecture of the Franciscan church is Gothic, but there are still visible signs of the late-Romanesque style. The facade of the church contains a famous stained glass window called ‘’God the Father’, made by Stanislaw Wyspianski. It is also decorated with blind arches, crenellations, and lancet windows. The church is said to be one of the first brick buildings in Krakow.

The interior of the church is highly decorated with many features like columns, arches, and keystones. One of the main features of the church is its vaulted ceiling with ribs. The church is very dark because the intense sunlight could ruin the paintings. There are also thin layers of gold in the apse. On the top of the pointed arch on the entrance, you can find 3 cinquefoils, and you can also find a spire on the top of the church. The interior of the church is decorated with lots of different paintings. The inside of the church is decorated with bas-reliefs.there are two statues of Jesus one in the chapel and one in the church.

The model of the church
The facade of the church
The facade of the church
The main alter
God the Father stained glass window
The interior of the church

Resources

Auschwitz Day Trip. (n.d.). Retrieved June 5, 2019, from https://www.introducingkrakow.com/basilica-st-francis-of-assisi

Krakow4u. (n.d.). Cracow | www.krakow4u.pl | Guide to Krakow. Retrieved June 5, 2019, from http://www.krakow4u.pl/eng_index.php?parametr=koscioly/franciszek/eng_fran ciszek

The Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi in Krakow, also known as the Franciscan Church. (2018, June 20). Retrieved June 5, 2019, from https://www.absolutetours.com/blog/the-basilica-of-st-francis-of-assisi-in-krakow/
 
Zabytki Krakowa. (n.d.). Retrieved June 5, 2019, from http://www.zabytkikrakowa.com.pl/kosciol-franciszkanow/
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