Thursday, September 6, 2012

Those Places Thursday: St. George Catholic Church, Smilgiai, Panevezys district, Lithuania

Smilgiai church belfry by Laima Gūtmane(simka).
Used under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike license.
This is the church where my maternal great-grandfather, Charles (Kazimieras) Peter Guokas Sr. (1863-1939) was baptized, and his parents, Jonas Guokas (ABT 1821 - BEF 1898) and Marija Šukytė (ABT 1836 - 1898), my great-great-grandparents, were married in 1856.

Šv. Jurgio (Saint George) parish originally began in 1655.  This wooden church was built 1761-1764 on the site of its predecessor, which may have burned.  The Baroque-style facade with its two cupola-topped towers were rebuilt in 1858.  The church has a cruciform plan with three naves, and a Rococo high altar, which spreads out to include what would normally be two side altars.  The belfry is a separate building.

A panoramic view of its gorgeous interior is available online at www.panoramas.lt.  A number of good exterior views are available here (scroll down to post #45).

Smilgiai church by Laima Gūtmane(simka). Used under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike license.

Church Smilgiai by Modris Putns. Used under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike license.

St. George Catholic Church interior, Smilgiai, Lithuania - photo courtesy Osvaldas Guokas

Sources: Lithuania Bradt Travel Guide by Gordon McLachlan, 5th edition, May 2008, and the church website.

© Amanda Pape - 2012 - click here to e-mail me.

6 comments:

  1. This is such a beautiful and distinctive church, Amanda. I love the photograph with both buildings and the horse and wagon driving by. It is so picturesque. Looks like it would be straight out of a storybook!

    Thanks so much for sharing these pictures within our Doors of Faith carnival at The Catholic Gene, and thanks for spreading the word.

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  2. Thanks, Lisa, for stopping by! It's been challenging to find Creative Commons licensed material - particularly of church doors - for all the Catholic churches in my family history!

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  3. You're finding them, though! Thanks to all of those photographers who share their photos online.

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  4. I share your sentiment regarding the photograph including the horse and wagon, Lisa. This is just a remarkable photo. What a quaint and peaceful setting for a church. I am curious about the altar design, colors and figurines. Thank you Amanda I have some work to do. It's beautiful.

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