The Unusual Appearance of the only Orthodox Church in Zenica

January 8, 2017 9:00 AM

church-zenicaChurch of the Nativity of the Holy Virgin in Zenica was constructed and consecrated in 1885 and it is the only Orthodox Church in Zenica.

The construction of the Church started in 1883 with the priest Stevan Savic, who was pastor of Zenica. He died during the construction of the church, but that did not stop people from completing construction of the church which is now a national monument of BiH.

Priest Marko Males said that the Orthodox believers from Zenica prayed in an old log cabin on the site of today’s cinema in the city center before the construction of the church. Church in Zenica has never suffered major damage, and today it is one of the most beautiful monuments and places of worship in Zenica.

“It was not damaged in the war, there was some devastation, but nothing drastically so that it had to be repaired again. The church was painted for the centenary, but the frescoes were made when there was no waterproofing which is why the lower parts are damaged,” says Males.

The iconostasis was done by Macedonian architect who made the architectural plan for the Cathedral in Sarajevo and Skopje, and masters from Zenica took his plan and built a church.

“When they reached the roof, they were missing the money, so instead of the dome, which was extremely expensive, they made hipped roof and small dome. The bell tower is in Romanian style and the whole church has unusual exterior. The iconostasis was set up in 1895 and it was shortened during the course of its history,” added Males.

church-zenica2The Orthodox Church in Zenica got a new facade and windows six years ago, and lighting last year by the funds of the Municipality of Zenica. Almy company from Zenica donated about 300 square meters of asphalt so that the faithful had better access to their place of worship.

However, apart from the iconostasis and walls, attention in the Orthodox Church in Zenica attracts central chandelier that was built five years ago. Its appearance is unique, and it cost 29,500 EUR.

Males said that they are planning in the coming period to provide underfloor heating in order for prayers to be pleasant since the temperatures during the cooler periods are around 0 °C.

(Source: E. M./



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