St. Rupert’s Church in Spodnja Voličina

 Spodnja Voličina 77, 2232 Voličina ( Map )

Description

The church of St. Rupert stands in the village centre of Spodnja Voličina. Just a few kilometers to the North is Hrastovec castle, and to the East lies the town of Lenart. The church, which is covered with a steep gable roof, consists of a spacious Gothic nave and presbytery, and also has a tall, massive bell tower on the North end. Apart from this, the church also has a sacristy on the South end and two Baroque chapels. Apart from a Gothic arch and detailed masonry, the church is also adorned by five richly decorated Baroque altars, made by the Master Jožef Holzinger. The nave's equilateral arch, which was erected in 1538, is a typical component of the architecture in the Slovenske gorice region. The parish of St. Rupert, which is nowadays part of the diaconate of St. Lenart, was originally a sub-unit of the old Ptuj parish. Sources first mention the parish of St. Rupert in the period 1429-1441, and the church building itself in 1443 and 1456. It became a vicariate in either the 15th or the 16th century, and the keeping of records of births and deaths was begun in 1662. The building became a parish church before the year 1780. Until 1789 the parish was part of the archdiocese of Salzburg, then tha of Seckau until 1859, and ever since it has been part of the (arch)diocese of Maribor. The building itself owes its history primarily to the old Ptuj parish, which built it in the first place. The Counts Stubenberg of Vurberk castle are to be thanked for the Late-Gothic phase of the church. The Counts Herberstein exerted the majority of influence upon the church's structural history from 1595 on. A keystone in the presbytery is adorned with the image of an axe and the head of an ox, which was the symbol of the Counts Purgstall, whose role in the history of the St. Rupert church is, sadly, unknown. The church was renovated in 2001.