Wooden churches

07. Krivé

The wooden Greek Catholic church of the Holy Evangelist Luke, 1826, NKP


The wooden Greek Catholic church in the village of Krivé is characterized by both its massiveness and also simplicity of the structure. It was built during the ministry of the Greek Catholic priest Fr. Ján Halík in 1826 on a spot of an older object and it is dedicated to Saint Luke.

Log structure stands on stone sustaining wall, which is disappearing on its western side. The whole building has unified rectangular ground plan with a polygonal sanctuary, prolonged nave and square tower. Belfry with two bells is finished with a baroque lantern and poppy head with a cross. One of the bells dates back to 1826, the year of the church construction. The church was covered with simple saddle roof, thus loosing the “three – tower” look, so typical for sacred objects in this area. Because of the shingles on the sanctuary and nave, and of the covering of the narthex with vertically laid boards, the church looks from outside as a one – part building.

In reality, it is a three – spaced building. The entrance part is called the narthex. In the past it was reserved for catechumens and penitents. They represented the purgatory, or the suffering church.

The next part is the nave. Here, the faithful gather to take part in services. It represents the Church that is in pilgrimage, thus all Christians living on the earth.

The third part, located behind the iconostasis - a wall with images, is the sanctuary. It represents the heavenly kingdom and also the victorious glorified Church in heaven.

Precious iconostasis consists of icons from different historical periods. In the main row are carved royal doors with medallions of the Evangelists and of the Annunciation. Together with the icons of St. Nicholas, Mother of God the Hodegetria, Christ the Teacher and holy apostle Luke date back to the beginning of the 18th century.

The iconostasis has architecture of four rows displayed on four levels. It is mostly of brick – red color. Atypical is the blue framing on the royal doors. Pillars and icon frames are gilded; the royal doors are decorated with vine tassels.

Especially interesting are also icons apart from the iconostasis. Very rare is the 16th century icon of the Mother of God, the Hodegetria with compliment. Compliment is called the illustration of the prophets on the edges with their prophecies about the Savior. Another interesting icon is the Savior with the heavenly powers. It shows Christ on a throne, illuminating an uncreated light of the Divinity, surrounded by the heavenly powers. In the corners of the icon are four beings, representing four Evangelists.

The icon of St. Michael depicts him as a knight with a sword, fighting against the powers of evil. Depictions on the small images on the edges of the icon represent biblical events. Another interesting icon is also the icon of the Great Deesis, located on the balustrade of the choir loft. It shows Christ in the middle, sitting on a throne with heavenly powers on the sides, and also hosts of saints in a gesture of supplicant prayer towards the Christ. Also the icon of the Epiphany shows the deviation of the folk painter from traditional iconography, visible in the figure of Christ without a halo, his figure being smaller than St. John, or the water, that is not touching the feet of both figures. All these 16th century icons were probably part of one iconostasis. In such a preserved state and number, there is no other iconostasis in Slovakia.

In the church is also a painted cross from the 17th century, Crucifixion icon from the 19th century, and an icon of the Martyred Christ from the 18th century, with Christ in the middle and instruments of passions next to him. Major renovations of the church were conducted in 1965 – 1970. In 2003 fundaments of the church were renovated and the tower in 2006. In 2010 the remaining covering of the church and the electrical installation were renovated.


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