Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Wooden Churches of the Carpathian Mountains # 8 - Równia, Poland

This former Greek-Catholic wooden church is found on a small hill in the village of Równia, located south of the town of Ustrzyki Dolne and a few kilometres from the Ukrainian border. It features a three-domed architectural style which is very rare on Polish territory, being more typical of Boyko-style churches found further east in Ukraine.
The church is thought to have been built in the early 18th century, and it would later suffer extensive damage during World War Two. Following the war, the Lemko and Boyko inhabitants of the village were accused of aiding the Ukrainian Insurgent Army, which was fighting the Polish government.
They were expelled from the region along with most of the Lemko and Boyko population of south-eastern Poland, and were sent to become new settlers in the recently-claimed former German territories granted to Poland at the end of the war. Thus the village of Równia lost its Greek-Catholic population, and the church was converted for use as a Roman Catholic church when Catholic Poles were resettled in the village.
This is one of the most unique wooden churches in the region of Małopolska (Little Poland), though the interior is much less remarkable than the exterior. The village is difficult to reach directly by public transport as it has very limited bus connections, but it is possible to walk to the village in about one hour by taking a hiking trail that begins at the edge of the town of Ustrzyki Dolne. There are also interesting wooden churches worth taking a look at in the surrounding villages of Ustjanowa Górna, Hoszowczyk and Hoszów.

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