Saint Ignatius of Loyola Parish Church - Water Town Church

In 1239, Béla IV gave Archbishop Róbert permission to found a town at the foot of the Castle Hill, where his servant people lived. This is how the Little, Water, Inner or Lower Town is formed in addition to the Royal Town. It was probably already surrounded by ditches and palisades during the Tatar attack.
Among the medieval churches of Water Town, the Saint László parish church is known by its name, which was probably already standing when the town was founded. The visitatio canonica of 1701 reports that after the expulsion of the Turks (1683), a mosque was converted into a church for the Christian faithful. According to some, this was previously the ancient parish church of St. László.
After the expulsion of the Turks, the Jesuits appeared. With the support of Archbishop György Széchenyi, they built a gymnasium, a convent and a church in honor of St. Ignatius Loyola, which was consecrated by Bishop Althann Mihály Váci in 1738.
After the abolition of the Jesuit order (1773), this church became the parish church of Water Town. From 1685, the pastors of Water Town were canons from Holy Saturday, who not only looked after the parish, but, with the help of the Jesuits and Franciscans for a long time, the Castle, the Royal Town and Párkány for a while.
From 1820, when Duke Primate Sándor Rudnay moved back to Esztergom, the parish church in Water Town played the role of the archbishop’s cathedral until 1856, when the Basilica was consecrated. During the Second World War, as a result of several bomb hits, the ceiling of the church collapsed and its furnishings were completely destroyed. It was rebuilt between 1957 and 1958 with the help of the International Catholic Charities.

In the 1980s, it received a new roof, then its interior painting was restored, keeping the remaining original artificial marble crucifixes. The marble altar, made from the donations of the faithful, was consecrated by Archbishop József Grósz of Kalocsa on November 30, 1958. The statue of Mary in the opposite side of the church entrance was made in 1740 to commemorate the plague of 1739.

The monumental church, which is one of the outstanding monuments of Italian Baroque architecture, was renovated in 2012. Among other things, instead of the tower’s clocks, painted clock were added, these eight clock show 3 minutes past 12:30. A statue of St. Ignatius of Loyola is at the top of the broken gable.

The floor area of the one-nave church is nearly 400 m². The nave and the chancel are vaulted in Czech glass, the portico on the entrance side is brick. The main altar painting depicting the glorification and miracles of Saint Ignatius was painted by Martino Altomonte in 1737.


The Island, Castle Hill and the City Center are only a few minutes’ walk from the church. The museums of Water Town are neighbors of the Church, the Christian Museum and Bálint Balassa Museum are also “residents” of All Saints Square.

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