1 Location, 2 Churches, 2 Completely Different Atmospheres

One thing I love about travelling in Europe is all of the history.  I’m a bit of a history buff (especially when it’s strange), so I like looking at old stuff historical things.  And sometimes in Europe you can find history right next to modern.

You want an example?  Take this one:

The Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church.

The Memorial Church is not the one you think it is.

The Memorial Church is not the one you think it is.

The original church (the one that looks more “churchy”) was badly damaged in World War 2.  Pretty much the entrance hall and part of the spire were all that survived. 

The “Before” picture. (Photo courtesy of Wikipedia)

In the re-design of the church the original plan was to demolish the damaged spire, but not a lot of people liked that, so they decided to incorporate the ruins into the new design of the church.  The ruins are now open as a memorial, letting you see what’s left of the original church and The Cross of Nails:

I really didn't know what I expected, but that is a cross made of nails.

I really didn’t know what I expected, but that is a cross made of nails.

The nails are from the roof of Coventry Cathedral in England, which was also badly damaged in World War 2.  The crosses represent peace and reconciliation, and there are over 160 crosses in a lot of different churches around the world.  The cross in the Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church (which was donated by the Cathedral) is one of the originals.

The new church (the more modern-looking building) is called “Lippenstift und Puderdose” (the lipstick and the powder box).  And yeah, I can see it.  (I’ll wait while you all scroll up for a second look… go on…)

There are 21,292 stained glass inlays.  The main colour is blue, but there’s some red, green and yellow thrown in there.

The blurryness is due to my wobbly camera, not the stained glass.

The blurriness is due to my wobbly camera, not the stained glass.

Inside the church it almost feels claustrophobic.  It’s all very blue and large and concrete.    Of course we went into the ruins first which are all very open and ruin-y.  After a few minutes in the new church it still felt claustrophobic, but also oddly calming.  I’d be interested in seeing a service in there. 

While the ruins are an example of a historical church, this new church is all about the modern.  There’s nothing wrong with either church, seeing them that close together can be a little trippy.

(*all facts are courtesy of Wikipedia)

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s