Church of the Holy Cross Exaltation



The parish church of the Holy Cross Exaltation in Horostyta belongs to the Chelm deanery of the Lublin-Chelm Orthodox Diocese. It is located 75 km north-east of Lublin.



Information about the first Orthodox church in Horostyta comes from 1521. The present temple was built in 1698 from the foundation of the Kopci family, the owners of the Opole estate, and concecrated in 1702.



It is a wooden building, with a log structure, formwork, single-nave, with a narthex from the west and two sacristies, added to the chancel on the eastern side.


Virtual tour

We have prepared some practical multimedia materials, which we hope will bring closer to these beautiful historic Polish Orthodox churches. Watching an introductory video with comments from the guide and spiritual guardian of the temple, decorated with moody Church chants, you can emphasize with its atmosphere. Going on a virtual tour, which includes 360 panoramic photos, you can quite imagine yourself inside the temple. For active tourists we have prepared a proposal for a cycling route. We invite you to a virtual tour of the orthodox church, and in the future to visit it in person.


Orthodoxy on the Chelm-Lublin-Podlasie border is an indigenous religion. In the years 1172-1205 these lands were ruled by the Orthodox prince Roman, and then by his son Daniel.
Already at the beginning of the thirteenth century, in nearby Uhrusk, the capital of the Orthodox bishopric was located, later moved to Chelm. It was the first Christian cathedral in the area of the left-hand Nadbuze.


Information about the first Orthodox church in Horostyta comes from 1521. Jan Sopocko, the Orthodox dean of Wlodawa, was mentioned as its founder. The temple was a branch of the Orthodox parish in Opole.

The present temple was built in 1698, when the Kopciowie, the owners of the Opole estate, decided to fund a new wooden church in the village. She was concecrated in 1702.

The temple underwent many renovations that affected the current shape. And so in 1775 it received a new altar and reinforced joists, and twenty years later two sacristies were added to the chancel. In 1848, the church was covered with a common gable roof and the inner wall was liquidated, thus opening the aisle interior.

A free-standing wooden bell tower with four bells was built in 1865.

In 1875, the parish in Horostyta was incorporated into the Chelm Orthodox Diocese. In 1880, a new iconostasis was inserted in the church and a narthex was added.

In the 90s of the nineteenth century, thanks to the significant financial support of the merchant Ivanov, the temple underwent another thorough renovation and was re-concecrated.

In 1915, during the evacuation, most of the Orthodox parishioners from Horostyta were forcibly resettled deep into Russia and the church was closed.

Its reopening took place only in 1923 and operated continuously until 1947. At that time, almost all of the 300 Orthodox inhabitants of Horostyta were displaced to the so-called lands regained as part of the tragic “Vistula” action. And once again the church was closed.

As a parish church with a branch in Hola, it was opened only in July 1953. And it works continuously to this day.

In the years 2004-2010, the church together with the belfry underwent a general renovation, as part of which the foundations, walls were renovated, the shingle roof was replaced,
the surroundings were put in order, the movable equipment was renovated: iconostasis, kyotes and main icons.

The last renovation of our beautiful historic church, co-financed from EU funds, was completed in 2020. The façade was replaced, the polychromes of the walls and ceilings were restored, as well as the fence and the surroundings.


The orthodox church in Horostyta is oriented. It is a single-nave building, with a narthex from the west and two sacristies, added to the chancel on the eastern side.

The church is wooden, with a log structure, formwork. The gable roof was covered with shingles. It is crowned with an onion dome with a pseudo-lantern, ending with an Orthodox cross.

The temple together with the belfry in 1967 was entered into the register of monuments.


The formwork walls are covered with modest architectural polychrome.

Above the entrance from the west we can see a traditional music choir.

From the east, the nave is separated from the altar part by a two-row polychrome iconostasis in the eclectic style, which dates back to 1880. Individual icons of the main order depict: Sts. Nicholaus, Archangel Michael, the Theotokos, the Pantocratoros, Archangel Gabriel and the Holy Cross Exaltation. The openwork Beautiful Gates are decorated with the motif of volutes and acanthus leaves, in which, according to the canons, small icons of the Annunciation and the Evangelists were woven,
who, unusually, are depicted in pairs in Horostyta.

The hall interior of the temple is not large, it can accommodate over 100 believers, but it carries prayer singing well.


Particularly noteworthy in the church in Horostyta deserves:

  • Seventeenth century icon of Christ Pantocratoros in the altar,
  • similarly dated icon of the Holy Croll Exaltation in the right kyot
  • in the left kyot – a beautiful icon of the Theotokos with the Child from the early nineteenth century
  • in the altar kyot the Icon of the Theotokos from Athos
    feretrons with icons:
    – Forest Icon of the Theotokos (XVIII century)
    – St. Catherine
    – St. Dmitri Solunsky
    – Risen Christ
    – Ascension Day
    – St. Helena and the Holy Cross Exaltation.

Virtual tour


Cycling route

Cycling route - Horostyta

Here is a proposal for a cycling route for active tourists. To use it, download the file to your computer by clicking the button on the left, unzip it, load the file .gpx to any GPS device for navigation … and off you go. We wish you a successful and fruitful journey.


Photo gallery

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