Info in English
Altenberg is a small village about 30 km east of Cologne. The most remarkable point of interest is the "Altenberger Dom". It is a gothic church built in the 13th century as the focal point of a Cistercian monastery. Now it is only a stone's throw from here to Cologne, but in the Middle Ages, this spot was very secluded, perfect for the retired life of the monks.
The church is one of the finest examples of pure Gothic style in Germany. At the beginning of the 19th century, during the French revolution and the Napoleonic wars, the monastery was closed and the church mostly destroyed.
In the middle of the 19th century the citizens of Altenberg and surround, proud of the history of their country, were brokenhearted at seeing the decay of this wonderful building. They joined, deciding to rebuild and renovate the church, filling it with Christian life again. They were lucky to find a generous sponsor, the Prussian king Friedrich Wilhelm. At that time, the Rhineland belonged to Prussia. He supplied most of the needed money from his personal funds, but only under the condition that the new church would be used by both Protestants and by Catholics.
The plans were successfully realized. The church was recreated and, in 1847, consecrated. It has since then been used as a contemporaneous church (of which only very few exist in Germany or elsewhere) and as a working example of ecumenical Christian life.
In 1995, the Protestant parish of Altenberg built a new "Gemeindehaus". That means, a place where people can gather, hold meetings, and where musical and other cultural performances can take place. It is also where the parish office is. In other words, it is the center of the Parish life, besides, of course, the Cathedral.
If you would like to get in contact with us and to hear more about our parish, do not hesitate to drop us a note via "snail mail" or email.
Evangelische Kirchengemeinde Altenberg
Gemeindebuero im Martin-Luther-Haus
D-51519 Odenthal / Germany