Overlooking the city’s main Liberty Square is a striking Gothic Revival church, famous for its decorative altars and stained-glass windows.
The Church of the Virgin Mary (Crkva Imena Marijinog) is one of the major attractions of Liberty Square. Also known as the Name of Mary Church, this religious landmark is both an architectural masterpiece and Novi Sad’s most important Catholic place of worship. Visit the Church of the Virgin Mary to appreciate the design of its façade and collection of sublime altars and windows.
Note that today’s church dates back to 1892, but it is the third to stand on this site. The first was erected in 1702, only to be destroyed in 1742. A second edition was built soon after but was later ruined during the bomb raids of the 1848 Hungarian Revolution. The esteemed local architect György Molnár designed the present building, a job that he did for free.
Gaze up at the 236-foot-tall (72-meter) façade, dominated by a narrow bell and clock tower flanked by multiple pilasters. Note the large rose window and the series of spires. Decorating the main entrance is a relief sculpture of a coat of arms. It also has a carved inscription that says Crux Amore (Cross of Love).
Go inside to find a layout of three naves, each characterized by rows of vaulted neo-Gothic arches. Mosaic patterns adorn the arches while paintings of divine events beautify the ceilings. Study the 20 stained-glass windows, each depicting a well-known saint. A bust of the church’s architect is beneath the choir.
Admire the artwork of the main altar, carved from wood brought from the historical Holy Roman Empire state of Tyrol. It features a painting of the Virgin Mary alongside St. Ladislaus of Hungary and St. Stephen, plus sculptures of the Four Evangelists. The three additional altars have figurines of religious figures including St. Emmerich, St. Paul and St. Peter.
The Church of the Virgin Mary is open daily and admission is free. It stands on the northeast side of Liberty Square, in Novi Sad’s city center. Walk to the center of the square to see a bronze statue of former city mayor Svetozar Miletić. On the opposite side is City Hall.