The miracle recorded in Cmolas involved a young boy's vision of the Transfiguration. Later the boy became a priest and eventually he was able to engage an artist to do a painting to reflect his vision. That painting hung in the old wooden "hospital" church until the new church was built in the 1960's. I've been told that many "pilgrims" who come to pray for help or good health here, have been granted their wish. The vatican recognized the church and painting deeming the site a "Sanctuary", which means it is of special significance. The statue (2nd pic) is a representation of the young boy. It stands on the church grounds.
Wladek has supplied me with a photo of the miraculous painting which is inside the church and I include it here.
This church is known by the name "hospital church" built in the 1600's for the elderly people who lived in a home built for them close by.
When the modern day 1960's church was built, the little wood frame church got in the way....and so this building was moved down the street in Cmolas. It currently stands on the site of my grandfather's church which was moved to Poreby Dymarskie. If you don't think that was fun figuring out... you just try it some day! At any rate, the two wooden churches are often confused because of their similar styles and having been moved... one church landing in the place of the other. This one is considerably smaller. It has a locked gate at the entrance, but you can look in to see the beautiful paintings and altar. It has been thoroughly restored and preserved but is not in use for devotions.
This enormous structure stands at the rear of the church grounds and is used to conduct mass out of doors in the summer. Very impressive, indeed.
The designation of "Sanctuary" has been given to the church, therefore there are many visitors who come on a pilgrimage. This "sanctuary" designation is interesting to me, as I was unaware of such things before my visit to Poland.
There is an impressive building (rectory) which houses the priests. This is where Gosia and I knocked on the door and found that wonderful patient priest who found my grandfather's records. It is adjacent to the newer church (built in the early 1960's)
The newer church of Cmolas, The Church of the Transformation of Christ, is easily found just off the main road....at the only real crossroads in Cmolas. We're talking about a very small town here. The church is quite large and well cared for, which would reflect a rather well endowed parish. Of course if there are many pilgrims who come each year, that could account for their being able to afford such a lavish new structure.
So many people have written to me about my search for grandfather's village. They are people who have seen me on VT or Ancestry.com and they either have our family name or they are trying to find information about their own family. Sometimes they think they can just go on-line and find everything. That would be in the perfect world. Truth is, much of Poland is still so rural and simple, that the records are only in existence within the church's walls. Many priests are helpful...some are not. Writing to the parish and offering money has not been successful for me or anyone I've spoken to. Truth is... following my path to the parish of birth is the only answer. You just have to be lucky enough to find a dear priest such as the one we found. Better figure on a translator if you don't speak Polish. Few priests I met speak English.
Depending on the way the books are organized... there are easy ways to locate your information. In searching for siblings of my grandfather on this trip, we decided to first get the book of that era and village... then look for the house number. You see, the villages are so small, that there is only one street ! By scanning the column of house numbers we were able to find several siblings of my grandfather. If you are a geneologist, you can appreciate that one usually finds linear listings, but the horizontal lines in the tree are more difficult to locate.
Well, maybe you have to be a researcher to appreciate all of this. :-)