Wooden churches, typical of the Potkozarje region. In the surrounding area of Prijedor, wooden churches are located in the villages Maricka, Omarska, Busnovi, Jelicka and Rakelici, and the church in Jelicka was declared a national monument. Out of 83 Serbian wooden churches in BiH, only about thirty were preserved. It is about wooden churches that are modest buildings in appearance, hidden in dense oak forests and groves.
Wooden church in Maricka is dedicated to the Holy Prophet Elijah and it is located about 20 kilometers from Prijedor. Based on the carved inscription above the west door, which refers to 1870, it is unclear whether this is the year of construction of the church or one of its restorations. In the attic of the church, royal doors were found which bear the date 30th July 1753, which could be related to the church which was in that same place before the wooden church. The church was built by Teodor Canak. A great renovation of the church was done in 1938. The altar area remained the same since 1938 and was done after the model of altar railing in Russian churches, and the icons were the work of the Russian painter Pavle Zitecki. The wooden church in Maricka belongs to the Maricka parish and it encompasses the area of Donja, Srednja i Gornja Maricka and also Krivaja. The church hosts a large folk assembly on St. Eliah. Near the church, there is an old oak tree, for which experts believe to be about 600 years old. The wooden church in Maricka was declared a national monument in October 2010.
Church of the Ascension of Lord Jesus Christ in Omarska
According to the scarce information, an old wooden church probably existed on this site and it was built around 1893. Historical circumstances did not allow its building until 1920 and based on archival documents, it is known that the construction lasted for two years and that it was consecrated in 1922. Now, is not significantly different from the original one from 1922. The church houses several relics and moving icons, framed and painted in oil on canvas. Among them a shroud stands out, work of an artists from the 19th century, the icon of the Three Holy Hierarchs which was given to the church in 1899 and an icon of Saint Sava, donated in 1935. In 2013, a new iconostasis was made and a complete renovation of the interior of the church was done.
The wooden church in Busnovi is dedicated to the Ascension of the Lord. The exact time of construction is not known, because the year 1870, which is carved above the entrance door, could be the year of construction or one of the many renovations. It is certain that the head constructor was Simo Stokic from Busnovi. In the people, the church is known as Spasovica, after the wide plateau where it is located. Wooden beams were originally laid on the ground, but in one major renovation, in 1924, they were raised on a stone retaining wall. Major renovations and repairs to the church were made in the period from 1994 to 1995. A new iconostasis was made, which was painted by the academic painter from Banja Luka, Ljubomir Gajic. Wooden church in Busnovi belongs to the Busnovi parish which consist of villages Busnovi, Tomasica and part of Krivaja. There is a large folk assembly in front of the church on Transfiguration. The current Bishop of Banja Luka, Jefrem, was born and baptised in Busnovi.
Wooden church in Jelicka is dedicated to the transfer of the relics of Father Nicholai. Based on the inscription, engraved above the west entrance, we know the church was erected in 1841, and its builder was Jovo Canak from Prijedor. According to legend, the church was originally built on the left bank of the Gomjenica River, then, for better security, it was dismantled and transferred to its current location in one night. In 1890, the church was raised off the ground and it got a stone foundation. Due to the deterioration of the old wooden church roof, a new roof was installed in 1978. Detailed interior renovation was done in 2010 when, among other things, a new iconostasis was made, icons were restored and a small choir gallery was renovated. In addition to the old wooden church, in the period from 1965 to 1991, a new church dedicated to the same saint was built. Jelicka parish consists of Jelicka, Gradina, Slavicka, Nisevci and Radosavska. The wooden church in Jelicka was declared a national monument in May 2005.
Church of the Ascension of the Lord Jesus Christ in Rakelici was built on the site which used to be called Zboriste. Before it, there was a small church-carda with the nearby cemetery at the same site, which was demolished in the first half of the 19th century. The church was, after many years of construction, built and consecrated in 1856, and it was dedicated to the Holy Ascension of the Lord. It was built by craftsmen from Prijedor, on which we see an inscribed year of 1856 and carved initials M.C. on the secondary logs. Today’s wooden church, unlike the original from the mid-19th century, has a foundation wall about half a metre high. There are two entrances to the church, one on the south and the other, the main one, on the west side. The iconostasis is from the time of building the church with icons that were painted by craftsmen from Kostajnica. The church houses several relics from Jerusalem, among which the notable one is an icon of Jerusalem. In addition to the old wooden church in Rakelici, a new church dedicated to the Holy Trinity was built in 1986.