Velká (Hrubá) Lhota

Velká (Hrubá) Lhota

Velká Lhota is situated in the hills of the Hostýn-Vsetín Upland, 540 metres above sea level. In the past it used to be called Hrubá Lhota. It has a population of about 400 people. It is not far from the town of Valašské Meziříčí and the Bystřička Dam. Between Velká Lhota and Malá Lhota, a high maple tree has grown, becoming an interesting natural point.

Since 1411 Velká Lhota became a part of the Rožnov domain. People still kept lots of books from the Reformation period which survived even the time of oppression. After the Toleration Patent was issued the Protestants established their congregation of the Augsburg confession in 1782. Later they joined the Reformed church. Also the Protestants from the villlage of Střítež and the area of Rožnov belonged to Velká Lhota before two congregations were founded (one in Střítež and the other in Velká Lhota) in 1872.

A rectangular wooden toleration house of prayer was built in Velká Lhota in 1783. It was made of solid beams and has a mansard roof covered with shingles. The interior keeps its toleration character, too: opposite the entrance on the wider side there is an ornamented pulpit and the Lord’s table from 1839 in front of it. Sitting in any of the pews, you can see both the pulpit and the Lord’s table. There are pews also on the galleries with their carved railing. The organ, bought much later (the congregation was not very interested to have one), is placed on the gallery over the entrance. Under the pulpit, there is a pew for presbyters. Outside, the house of prayer is surrounded by wooden porches which cannot be seen anywhere else. People could take a shelter here when it was raining and they could not get in. During a funeral, this was a place to put a bier with the deceased. There is a cemetery with old trees all around the house of prayer. The house of prayer which is looked after very carefully, still looks the same as it did in 1783 when it was built. It has kept its original simplicity making it even more valuable.

This rare toleration house of prayer where Jan Karafiát, the author of “The Fireflies“, a famous children‘s story, preached in 1875–1895, was written on the list of the national cultural monuments in 2008.

The congregation also has a nice rectory building with a hall for winter worship and a flat for a preacher.