Places to visit

Church of Abbot St. Gál in Komjatná

The Roman-Catholic church of Abbot St. Gál is situated in the town of Komjatná, approximately 12 km away from the centre of Ružomberok.

The church, which stands on a hill in the centre of the town, was built in 1823. Most of the funds for its construction came from the imperial religious fund.

An interesting fact is that near the location of today’s church, there used to be a medieval church of the Holy Spirit, which no longer exists, and which was probably built as early as the 12th century and was one of the earliest sacral buildings in the region.

Part of the furnishings come from the original church. Most valuable is the main altar of Abbot St. Gál from the end of the 17th century. Standing in the centre of the alter is the statue of St. Gál. By the sides, there are two statues of saints – bishops. They are wearing liturgical robes, holding croziers, and they are wearing bishop mitres on their heads. The statue of St. Gál stands on a sanctuary with a depiction of Jesus Christ holding an imperial apple in his hand. At the top of the altar, there is a statue of God the Father – the ruler of the heavens, holding a sceptre and an imperial apple. By the sides, there are statues of kneeling angels.

Also valuable is the Baroque baptistery. Standing on a plinth is a statue of an angel with long hair and open wings. The angel is holding the baptistery bowl on his head. Standing on the lid of the bowl is a sculptural group of the Baptism of Christ, depicting Jesus being baptised by John the Baptist. Jesus is on his knees with his hands crossed on his chest, John the Baptist is standing with a cross in his left hand, and, with his right hand, he is baptising Jesus with water poured from a shell.

A part of the pulpit has also been preserved. It is currently used as a stand for the lectern. On the pulpit, you can see statues of four Evangelists. Each of them is holding a book.

Also interesting is the statue of Vir dolorum: Man of Sorrows. It portrays Jesus Christ with long hair and a beard, sitting on a rock, with an expression of suffering in his face. Placed on his head is a crown of thorns, and he is supporting it with his right hand. In his hand, he is holding thorn twigs. He has drops of blood on his face and he is wearing a cloth tied around his waist.

You can also notice the statue of Virgin Mary, standing on the globe entwined by a snake. There is a crescent moon under her feet. She is wearing a blue cloak and a white gown. She has a leaf crown on her head and she is holding a sceptre in her left hand. With her right hand, she is holding baby Jesus in a sitting position, with an imperial apple and a crown in his hands.

Another thing you can find in the church are paintings of the way of the cross.

The church tower has four bells. The one from 1670 is interesting. It has several reliefs. It depicts, for example, the scene of the crucifixion of Jesus Christ with Mary and John on the sides, the scene of the Annunciation with Mary and an angel, or the scene of the Sacrifice of Isaac.

Displayed to the right of the main entrance, at the entrance to the extension building, is a bell of St. Jacob from 1554. It was originally placed in the former church of the Holy Spirit, and transferred here after construction of this new church. However, at the end of last century, it broke due to inappropriate mechanical striking. It was welded, but it broke again. It is a rare monument, therefore it cannot be melted and cast again. It cannot be welded again either, as there is a risk it would break again. Therefore, it was professionally cleaned and altered, and remains here as a monument. A new bell of St. Martin was cast and put in the place of the broken bell.

The patron of the church is a Benedictine abbot, St. Gál. The reason is that Benedictine missions were common in northern Slovakia at the time of construction of the church.

Behind the church, there is a nice resting area with a gazebo, a Lourdes cave and a small chapel with a statue of Virgin Mary.