The history of Plateliai church dates back to the early 16th c. – the construction of the first wooden church. In 1744, the parson Juozapas Vaitkevičius, supported by the congregation, built a new – already the fourth – church, which stands there to this day. The builder of the wooden church in Plateliai died in 1776 and was buried in its basement, under the altar of St Joseph. Though time the church has undergone significant reconstructions: the first reconstruction-restoration took place before 1792, in 1852 it was rebuilt on the old foundation without changing the way it looks, and some other renovation works took place in 1900-1902, 1928 and 1967.

Shaped like a Latin cross, the church has a single nave with an entryway , an organ balcony, a transept, a presbytery and two sacristies behind the chapels of the transept; the sacristy on the north-eastern side has two floors. The foundation has a stone masonry basement , the walls are built of wooden logs, reinforced with braces on the interior and exterior. The façades are covered with vertical wooden planks with battens, the eaves are decorated with a wooden profiled cornice, south-eastern façade – a cross with a statue of the crucifix. The roof of the church is decorated with turrets and spires: there is a turret with a metal cross above the transept , while the pediment and apse of the front façade are decorated with spires and crosses.

On both sides of the entrance, there are wooden stairs with profiled rails, taking to the organ balcony with a wooden baluster. The organ balcony has an interesting arcade at the top and old-fashioned choir boxes below. In the 18th c. this church had a 10 register organ, a large drum and loud-voiced bells. The modern-day organs were built in 1909, manufactured by the famous master Jonas Garalevičius.

The interior of the church of Plateliai features the great altar and four side Baroque altars. They are decorated with columns, carvings and paintings with silver casings. In the 18th c. all altars and the pulpit, decorated with embossed Rococo ornaments and an openwork crowned canopy, were painted white and gilded.
The interior of the church is rich with elements of painted décor: the cornice of the nave and presbytery is painted with compositions of ornamental emblems; the vaults of the nave, transept chapels and the presbytery are decorated with ornamental painting and roses, and the wall and ceiling trims are painted as well.
The great altar of the Apostles St Peter and St Paul is decorated with two paintings. 5 other altars – the altar of the Crucifix, St Anne, Blessed Virgin Mary, the altar of the Holy Family (St Joseph) in the chapel of the left nave and the altar of St Michael the Archangel in the chapel of the right nave – have survived as well.
The pride of the church is the excellent Rococo baptistery with a cover, standing in the left chapel. It dates back to the construction of the church and is now used to keep holy water and baptism oils. Above it there is a large painting of St John the Baptist. The paintings with luxurious casings show that they are miraculous and provide grace. It is also a sign that a church, which could afford these, was rich.

The wooden church of Plateliai also has a belfry, built in 1899 and reconstructed in 1996. The belfry has two sections with a high, sloped silhouette of the lower part and an open gallery at the top, with a roof, supported by four-sided pillars. The inscription of the bell above says: GEG. V. BOCHUMER VEREIN, BOCHUM 1928.



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  • Address: Didžioji g. 15
  • State/county: Plungė district
  • Country: Lithuania