The wooden Greek Catholic church of Saint Luke the Evangelist in village Tročany is located 15 kilometers south from Bardejov. It may very well be the oldest wooden church of eastern (Orthodox) rite in all of Carpathian basin. 

The church was most probably brought to Tročany from a nearby village Rešov. Evidence for this theory is represented by cutting marks on building’s beams and an inscription on an icon depicting the Crucifixion. The church, judging by its architectural style, probably dates to no later than the end of the fifteenth or beginning of the sixteenth century.

The building is a three-part structure covered by wooden shingles with two towers and three crosses. Located on the western side, the church’s entrycontains the original entrance door. A mighty tower with a conical dome reinforces authentic period appearance. The tower holds two bells.

The church contains an incomplete iconostasis composed of two rows with icons dating from the sixteenth to the eighteenth century. Instead of a proper first row, the relevant space is filled with loosely hanged icons of saint Nicolas the Bishop, Hodegetria, Christ the Teacher and a small icon of Saint Luke the Evangelist – the patron saint of the church. 

The simple royal doors contain no depictions of the Annunciations or the Evangelists. Above the doors is the Image of Edessa – a depiction of Christ’s face on a piece of cloth. There is no second row with the traditional depictions of feast days. 

The third and the forth row of the iconostasis are located on a precious large table. The third row contains icons depicting individual apostles with the icons of Chris the High Priest, Hodegetria and Saint John the Baptist in the middle of the row. The only discernible apostles in this row of icons are those of Saint Peter, Saint Paul and Saint James, son of Zebedee. The rest of the figures are very vague and contain no recognizable attributes. 

The fourth row comprises the icons of the prophets. The middle of the row contains the icon of Panagia – Virgin Mary in prayer flanked by angels. One can identify the figures of several prophets: Aaron, Nahum, Ezekiel and Haggai. The top of the iconostasis is adorned by an icon depicting the scene ofthe Crucifixion with discernible figures of Virgin Mary, Saint John the Evangelist and possibly Mary Magdalene and centurion Longinus. 

The sanctuary of the church contains a decorated altar with an eighteenth century icon of the Deposition of Christ as well as the icon of Saint Michael the Archangel. 

Several other precious icons are individually placed outside the iconostasis in the nave of the church. Furthermore, large icons of the Last Judgment, The Annunciation and Saint Paraskeva are painted on separate canvas located at the sides of the iconostasis. 

The north wall holds wooden icons depicting Hodegetria, Christ Pantocrator and Saint Michael the Archangel. The opposite wall contains smaller icons including the depiction of the Crucifixion, a rare depiction of Saint John of Suceava as well as a joint icon of Saint Nicolas the Bishop and Paraskeva.

The church underwent major reconstruction in 1897, 1933 and 1968. Restoration works were finally completed in the timespan 2010–2011. 

Mass is held every Sunday at 8:00 AM. On Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and during feast days the mass is held at 4:30 PM.




Translated by:
Mgr. Samuel Beňa, M.A.

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