St. Anne is the patron saint of the church in Jaktorowo and her picture appears twice on the main altar. She was the mother of Mary and grandmother of Jesus. The altarpiece painting shows a family scene of the teaching of Mary. St. Anne is a patron saint of families and her cult as the grandmother of Jesus emphasizes the role of grandparents in children’s upbringing and the importance of multigeneration of families where the grandparents are the ones who pass on the knowledge and experience they gained during their long lives.
Picture of St. Anne who is teaching Mary highlights the wisdom of mother, her care, devotion and eagerness to pass knowledge as well as love and trust in God.
Not much information exists about the life of St. Anne. In the Apocrypha it says that she and her husband Joachim were very pious and honest marriage but they didn’t have children for a long time which was a great misfortune. Thanks to God’s intercession when they were quite old, they were given a daughter Mary whom they devoted to God.
The Mother of the MadonnaThere is one sweet Saint above
Whom I fear we do not love
With the love which is her meed.
Worthy of our love indeed
Is the good and kind St Anne:
Let us praise her all we can. (…)
What new grace shall I implore?
Ah! to feel yet more and more
Of that filial love and zeal
Which the Breton peasants feel –
Honoring as best I can
Mary’s Mother, good St Anne.
On the pulpit’s canopy was placed a sculpture of St. Michael the Archangel, a fiery warrior, the Prince of Heavenly Army who fights for justice and law. He was the one who turned against Lucifer when he persuaded angels to revolt against God. The Hebrew meaning of the name Michael is “Who is like God” – exclaimed the Archangel when he started the fight with evil. He is commonly thought to be the archangel of justice and judgment, grace and compassion. He helps everyone who find themselves in horrible oppression. Michael is the angel of judgment and God’s punishments, but also the angel of God’s grace.
God’s apostle is shown in full armour. St. Michael is defeating a dragon, a personification of Satan.
The interior of the church of St. Anne has been richly decorated with polychromy made after 1945. In the oval medallions on the ceiling the four evangelists were portrayed and the Holy Family was put in the center. An unusual decoration can be found on the choir gallery. An early-baroque cartouche with the coat of arms of Poland, Lithuania and Ruthenia was placed, in the middle of which there is a medallion with the image of the Mother of God of Częstochowa.
The three-panel shield with the crown of the Jagiellon dynasty is a symbol of a unified Poland, and the cross and the sword are symbols of Polish, Lithuanian and Russian fight for faith and independence. The seal symbolizes one and undividable Poland as well as a common fight to secure a full independence of Polish, Lithuanian and Russian lands. A historic unity of Polish lands from before partitions has been emphasized: “One crown is one Poland, three coats of arms under the crown are three peoples willingly united as equals, it is an acknowledgment of historic development of Poland”.
One can find another historic souvenir in the church – a cartouche put above the doors with the date of the building’s erection: 1763 and the date of its restoration 1907. In the beginning of the 20th century people emphasized the importance of maintenance of historical buildings, valued the original substance and cared for the state of the church so that it could service the local community. The inscription is an evidence for the efforts put into retaining the object in its original state, not allowing for its deterioration.
Aedificata – erection / building
Restaurata – renovation
10 Jaktorowo, 64-820 Szamocin tel.: 67 283 38 20
Sundays: 7.45 am, 11.00 am
holy days of dispensation: 6.00 pm
6.00 pm (Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday)
St. Anne’s day: July 26th