Biserica romano-catolică – CACICA – The Roman Catholic Church (Bucovina, Romania)

By | September 3, 2019


After the annexation of Bucovina (1755-1918), the
Habsburg authorities discovered a salt mine in Cacica Miners, especially Poles of Catholic confession,
are brought for exploitation of salt The statue of Pope John Paul II, the one who in 2000
raised the church to the status of the Minor Basilica The Catholic Church in Cacica was built
to serve the colony of Polish miners The first place of miners’ prayer was the chapel
of St. Varvara, the protector of the miners This chapel was arranged in 1804-1806 in the
first salt chamber exploited at 21 m deep In 1810, a wooden church was sanctified,
which had already this miraculous icon In 1844, the Cacica Parish was established,
which in 1867 had 1,356 Catholic believers Their descendants still form a well-established
Polish community in the Cacica area The wooden church was too small and quickly
degraded, requiring a new representative building However, the foundation stone of
the new church is only put in 1903 The church built of stone and brick was
sanctified in 1904 when it was not finished The church is built in a neo-gothic style in
the cross, 40 m long and 50 m tower height In 1911, a house for large
number of pilgrims was built The secondary shrine is a “Pieta”
dating back to 1910 It is also the altar of the Most Holy Virgin
Mary, “The Queen of Heaven and Earth” Also, the church has the main patron “Assumption
of the Virgin”, August 14-15, pilgrimage day In the main altar there is the miracle-working icon of the
Virgin Mary with the Infant in his arms (Madonna Black) In the presbytery there are 5 stained glasses representing
the five mysteries of the rosary of the Virgin Mary “Holy Mary of the Rosary”, October 8,
is the second patron of the church (Probably) St. Anthony of Padua,
the saint of wonders Saint Joseph’s Altar The large windows at the ends of the transverse
nave are also decorated with colored glass The secondary altar on the left is dedicated to
Saint Joseph, the fiance/husband of the Holy Virgin We review the miraculous icon
of Our Lady (Madonna Black) She was brought to Cacica in 1809 from a church in
Stanisławów, where many Polish miners came from The pulpit culminates with the
figure of “Jesus the Good Shepherd” The Icon of the Virgin Mary from Cacica was probably
painted at the beginning of the 17th century She was venerated from the
beginning as a Miraculous Icon The icon was restored in 2009-2010, and
the exterior decoraton was remaked in 2013: crowns of gold and precious stones, Jesus’ robe in red
coral, the mantle of the Mother of God in lapislazuli, etc. The choir of the church was built
in 1914 and consecrated in 1918 The organ of the church was installed in 1937,
damaged during the war and restored between 1997-1998 In 1996 the church was declared a diacezan sanctuary, in
1997 “National Sanctuary”, and in 2010 the Minor Basilica On the eve of the Holy Mary, the church becomes the
place of the largest Catholic pilgrimage in Moldova In 1908, behind the church was built a cave representing
the appearance of the Virgin Mary in Lourdes In 1936, the extension of the cave with
arched 60 m long galleries was completed These side galleries are meant to shelter pilgrims in
bad weather and there is room for confession and sharing On the right there is a water
well considered healing “Blessed water” At the beginning there was a stone altar,
and from 2010 this one On the left side of the gallery was set up a place for
lighting the candles (according to the Orthodox tradition) The scene of the Virgin Mary’s show in 1858 in
Lourdes is reproduced on the back wall of the grotto Here are the statues of the Virgin Mary
and of St. Bernadette Soubirous

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