In the Gothic church of St. Nicholas the main altar comes from 1870-1876 and it was made in the neo-Baroque style. It is dedicated to three bishops – in the center there is St. Nicholas.
The identification of two other bishops is ambiguous. It is claimed that these are St. John Chrysostom and St. Gregory of Nazianzus. All three of them worked in the Middle East in the 4th century and participated in the shaping of the christian doctrine.
The bishops, whose images were shown in the form of figures placed in niches, were famous for their erudition and exalted sermons, and thanks to their knowledge their became the Doctors of the Church. What is more, St. Nicholas was especially sensitive to injustice and human suffering. According to one of many legends, he brought back to life young men who were dismembered and thrown to a pail with salt water by their cruel father the innkeeper.
THE ADORATION OF BABY JESUS
In the side altar one can find a painting of St. Joseph with Jesus, and on the altar’s bolt there is an image of the Mother of God with the Child. She has been shown accompanied by two adoring saint founders of mendicant orders – St. Dominic Guzman and St. Francis of Assisi. Their activity concentrated on the promotion of life in poverty and the preaching of Gospel, especially in cities. Both preachers came from wealthy families, but they discarded comfortable, wealthy life. They knew each other personally and they used to meet often as they became friends. They were described by Dante Alighieri in “Divine Comedy” as two wheels of one chariot.
TO SAIL THE SEAS
Inside the church on the rood beam between the chancel and the nave there is an extraordinary pulpit. It is in a shape of a boat (cf. a similar object from the Franciscan church in Kalisz) carried by stormy waves. A bit ominous element is a broken mast, however – fortunately – it is firmly held by angels. Their presence is soothing because it assures of Divine Providence which watches over the faithful.
At the prow, instead of the figurehead which is an allegorical figure used to be put on sailing vessels for decoration, a sculptor placed a carved scene from the Bible: one day Jesus miraculously walk the lake and approached the boat with apostles: “’Lord, if it’s you,’ Peter replied, ‘tell me to come to you on the water.’ ‘Come,’ he said. Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus. But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, ‘Lord, save me!’ Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him. ‘You of little faith,’ he said, ‘why did you doubt?’” (Matthew 14, 28-32).