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Vilnius - Lithuania heart

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Church of St. Catherine

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Phone No.: +370 5 262 0421
Email: info@kultura.lt
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The Church of St. Catherine was built between 1625 and 1743, following the style of the Late Baroque with splendid Rococo decorations. The Church features abundant embellishments; its pediment is decorated with two Rococo towers. The Church of St. Catherine is considered to be the most typical example of Vilnius’s Baroque, featuring two slim and elegant towers. 15 Simonas Cechavicius’s paintings were displayed in the Church of St. Catherine. The great altar was decorated with the painting of a high artistic value. It portrays the betrothal of St. Catherine and Baby Jesus. The remaining paintings are kept in the Lithuanian Art Museum.

The constructions of the Church were initiated by the Benedictine nuns belonging to the Chelmno congregation. They settled in Vilnius around 1620. At first the Church was a small brick building, which suffered badly during the War with Moscow. It took a long time to rebuild the Church and the monastery afterwards. After the architect Jonas Kristupas Glaubica’s reconstruction in 1741 – 1773 the Church was expanded and obtained its current looks. The façade of the Church features vertical lines, the pediment and towers are decorated with volutes (architectural spiral embellishments), vases, and openwork crosses. The back pediment is also very impressive with its numerous reliefs. A very refined Chapel of Providence was built in on the side of the Church in 1641, and was rebuilt in 1746. The interior of the Church was finalized in the middle of the 18th century; only minor amendments were done in the 19th century. The Church is a masterpiece of the Late Baroque. The Church and the monastery suffered a lot during the World War II and afterwards; many valuable art works were gone or damaged. The Church belonged to the Art Museum during the Soviet times, and was used as a storehouse. The remaining paintings are kept in Vilnius Museum of Art. During the renovation which started in 1994 the top parts of both towers were renewed.

The administrative rights were passed to Vilnius Teachers’ house in 2006. The Church is famous for the amazing acoustics, numerous cultural events, and live music performances of the bands established by the Municipality of Vilnius City: St. Christopher’s Chamber Orchestra, Choir “Jauna Muzika”, boys’ and youth choir “Azuoliukas”, together with other art bands and performers.

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Church of St. Catherine Church of St. Catherine Church of St. Catherine Church of St. Catherine

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