Church of St. Stanislaus Bishop and Martyr in Kovel
canva, oil, 65 x 50, Kyiv, 2008
The Church of St. Stanislaus Bishop and Martyr in Kovel was built in the years 1924-1931. The new brick temple, the largest in the Lucka diocese, was built on a plot of land specially designated by the municipal authorities. The initiator of the construction was Father Felix Sznarbachowski - a local pastor. It was designed by an architect from Warsaw – Kononowicz, and the main builder was Joseph Kardasz. After the death of Fr. Sznarbachowskiego, the matter of building the church, "Memorial of Blood and Glory," fell into the hands of Marian Tokarzewski - one of the most popular pastors in the diocese of Lucka (murdered by the NKVD in 1941.) The temple was built in the gothic style in the plan of a cross and had a special room at the chapel for the military. When World War II began, the building of the church was stopped, along with decoration on the interior of the temple. The proposal to build the temple by the parishioners, the local railroad workers, was huge; but the largest donations for construction was offered by American Polonia. In 1944, at the time of the bombing of the city, the temple was damaged, and after the war ended, the Soviet government issued an order to its complete dismantling.
In 1938 the parish of Kovel had 14,728 faithful, but since 1944 it almost ceased to exist. From 1943, most catholics ran away from Kovel, past the Bug River, from cruel slaughter that began in 1942.