Friday, August 16, 2019

The Abbey of St Augustine in Żagań, Poland

Our friend Dom Jakobus, a canon of Herzogenburg Abbey in Austria, administers a Facebook page about the various orders of canons regular, and recently posted pictures of the former church of the Augustinian Canons Regular in Żagań, Poland. I say “former” because the religious communites that founded the vast majority of such churches were turfed out of them during the various waves of revolutions that destroyed so much of Catholic Europe in the 19th and 20th centuries, and the church is now a parish. However, it retains many beautiful signs and memories of its earlier history, including many images of the great Saints among the various families of Canons Regular. Thanks to Dom Jakobus for his permission to share these photos with our readers.

A statue of St Augustine, whose very simple Rule was taken as the basis of canonical life for many different kinds of  religious communities, while leaving ample room for individual congregations to develop their own particular traditions.
The main altar seen from the gallery.
Very nice choir stalls, each decorated with a painting of a different episode of the life of St Augustine.
The library, the ceiling of which is decorated with Saints of the Augustinian Canons Regular in heaven.
The coat of the arms of the abbot; many abbots of the Canons Regular were mitred, and celebrated Mass within their own abbeys and dependencies with a variety of Pontifical insignia, but always in a way that distinguished them from bishops.
The tabernacle for the holy oils.
I believe this is part of the cloister.
The Holy Father Augustine

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