Philippus Church (Leipzig)

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Philip Church Leipzig's former rectory (left), which as since May 2018 Inclusion hotel serves
Philippuskirche and the inclusion hotel with elevator extension in the former rectory, view from the Karl-Heine Canal , photo from April 2019
Altar, pulpit, singer gallery and organ - shortly before the reopening on May 3, 2019
Built according to the Wiesbaden program : the Philippuskirche in Leipzig's Lindenau district
The church tower, view from the Helmholtz School (secondary school)

The Philippuskirche is an Evangelical Lutheran church in Leipzig's western district of Lindenau . It is - unlike usual - a church without an associated parish.

After years of vacancy, the church has been extensively restored and is now used as a place for music, culture, faith and events. Its ceremonial reopening with former Bishop Jochen Bohl and around 500 visitors was on May 3rd, 2019. Before that, it had been an Evangelical Lutheran parish church since 1910 .

The former parsonage right next to the church has been - completely renovated and converted for the new use - since May 2018 an integration hotel (own name: inclusion hotel ), operated as a bed and breakfast hotel .

The church ensemble, which has been unused for a long time, with the art nouveau hall of the church, which has remained almost original since its inauguration in 1910, has been extensively rebuilt by the new owner, Berufsbildungswerk Leipzig (BBW) for new use within a few years. The total costs were just under 4.5 million euros; the church was also extensively renovated.

The building was one of the first church buildings approved for conversion by the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Saxony : In 2002, the merged parish decided on the Heilandskirche in Plagwitz as the place of worship.

Architectural feature

The Philippuskirche was built from 1907 to 1910 in Art Nouveau style, it is one of only two churches in Central Germany that were built according to the principles of the Wiesbaden program . The church and its distinctive, 62.5 meter high tower with a richly decorated neo-baroque dome significantly shape the townscape .

Recent past

Philippus Inclusive Hotel Leipzig in April 2019

In 2012, the Leipzig vocational training center acquired the building and grounds of the area, also known as the Philippus Ensemble, in order to set up a hotel with a high proportion of employees with disabilities.

The basis for this was an idea that was born in Leipzig, both to convert the rectory and to continue using the undeveloped church - a project that was unique at least in the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Saxony. It was submitted to a committee headed by the then Bishop Jochen Bohl in the spring of 2010 and approved. In spring 2019 the idea became visible reality:

“Today Philip is a place of hope. Against the foreseeable trend, against all odds, new life has emerged in old walls. The effort was considerable to overcome resistance, procrastination, prejudice ... Now a meeting point has emerged in the quarter, an integration hotel, a workplace for people with a disability, the revitalized church open, a spiritual place where the future of God appears. Jesus' promise to Philip and Nathanael was, “You will see heaven open.” Heaven is open as God's future is. And yes, also against the appearance of the earthly: Those who trust Jesus are free to get involved in the improbable. Faith can do the impossible. This has determined the history of the Church of Christ for 2000 years and changed the world through it. Our hope is well founded that in this place people will get involved with the apostle Philip, come and see what it means to trust Christ. Learn not to let your gaze be blocked by the power of the factual, not to follow your expectations and prejudices, but to focus on the future of God, who has called us to hope. So this place, which bears the name of Philip, can become what the apostle was to Nathanael: an enabler. Here people can find Christ, the light of the world. We hope for that on this day, that is what the Lord wants to do. "

- Former Bishop Jochen Bohl in the festive sermon for the rededication of the Philippus Church on May 3, 2019

The aim was and is to combine accommodation (hotel), catering (gastronomy) and embassy (church meeting place) economically in the long term under the umbrella of Philippus-Leipzig.

The construction and cost plans were available at the beginning of 2014, but the original goal of completion in November 2016 was not realistic. After the building permit was granted in summer 2016, tenders were held for the trades. The commissioned architects' office Domke from Markkleeberg was concerned with both the challenges of a modern inclusion hotel and the consideration of special features of monument preservation. In the former rectory, an integration hotel started operations in May 2018 - with 29 barrier-free double and family rooms at three-star level, breakfast rooms, kitchen and conference area.

Financial support

Leipzig's Lord Mayor Burkhard Jung promised significant financial support from the City of Leipzig in October 2016. The aim is to provide financial support for the energetic and structural renovation of the church building and the ancillary rooms planned by the Leipzig vocational training center, which will cost around 1 million euros and be implemented between April 2017 and September 2018. Financing should come from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) (80 percent of the funding amount) as well as the federal-state program Urban Redevelopment East (10 percent) and the city of Leipzig (10 percent).

The Leipziger Volkszeitung reported on April 10, 2017 that the federal government would support the renovation work with 200,000 euros from the Monument Protection Special Program VI. This was what Leipzig's Bundestag member Thomas Feist (CDU) campaigned for.

In May 2018, the city administration announced that Leipzig would support the further redesign of the Philippuskirche with 426,000 euros. The money came from compensatory amounts in the Leipzig-Plagwitz redevelopment area and was to be used for work in the sanitary area and in side rooms of the church until the beginning of 2019. The total cost was around 508,000 euros. According to the city, around 1.1 million euros from the European Regional Fund were invested in the renovation in the first construction phase last year .

At the end of June 2018, the local board of trustees in Leipzig presented the German Foundation for Monument Protection (DSD) with a symbolic sponsorship contract for 20,000 euros thanks to numerous earmarked donations for the restoration of the chandelier in the Philippus Church.

The church, together with the parsonage and community hall, was transferred from the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Saxony to the Leipzig vocational training center in 2012. The ensemble is a listed building. In the past two years, the rectory had been renovated and converted into a bed and breakfast hotel - it is Leipzig's first integration hotel. The cost of around 4.5 million euros was co-financed by Aktion Mensch .

Event series

Since 2014 the church has been used regularly as a place for music of different styles, also because of its impressive acoustics. The Concerts on the Canal series offers benefit concerts in favor of the restoration of the Jehmlich organ and complements the series of events “Light on!”, “Breath”, “Midweek Supper” and “Visiting Philip”.


The congregation of the later Philippuskirche emerged in 1904 from the division of the parish of Lindenau, which belongs to the Nathanaelkirche and which had previously experienced a very strong increase in its members. The naming is based on the meeting of the apostle Philip with Nathanael reported in Joh 1,46  LUT .

After lengthy discussions about the design by architect Alfred Müller, in which the art historian Cornelius Gurlitt and the theologian Julius Smend finally gave favorable statements, the groundbreaking ceremony followed on September 2, 1907 and the foundation stone was laid two months later. But the church authorities demanded that such a draft according to the Wiesbaden program should not be repeated. The parsonage was ready for occupancy a year later and the topping-out ceremony for the church and parish hall was celebrated. On October 16, 1910, pastor Thomas Hermann Ferdinand von Criegern inaugurated the church.

At the end of the 1990s there were decisive changes for the Philippus parish: Due to the structural reform within the church, it merged with the Heilandskirche congregation to form the Lindenau-Plagwitz parish in 1999, and the entire parish work has been at home in the Heilandskirche in Plagwitz since 2002 .

After the renovation of the tower and roof in the 1990s, the renovation of the outer facade was completed in 2004. Years of planning led to the renovation of the rectory from August 2016. The topping-out ceremony was celebrated on May 3, 2017, the feast day of Philip . The project cost almost 4.5 million euros, most of which came from the Leipzig vocational training center. Three well-known restaurateurs and hoteliers from Leipzig took on the sponsorship. After the successful completion of the renovation and renovation measures, the integration hotel opened on May 3, 2018.

The last phase of construction was the interior renovation and restoration of the church. From 2017 to 2019, the building was sealed with funding from various sources and the heating, electrics and sanitary facilities were renewed. The church interior of the church should keep its visible historical charm. Devotions and concerts were also held during the construction work. On May 3, 2019, the church was rededicated with a festive divine service with Former Bishop Jochen Bohl , during whose term of office nine years earlier the course had been set for the reawakening of Philip.


The church is shaped by the Wiesbaden program developed in 1891 . Its essential points are the unity of the celebrating congregation, the equality of pulpit and altar as well as the framing of the Last Supper event from the congregation room on the one hand and the organ and singing stage on the other. The aim was to meet the community and the clergy on an equal footing. The Ring Church in Wiesbaden , built between 1892 and 1894, is considered a prototype of this idea, the design principle of which found imitations throughout Germany in the following decades.

The draft of the Philippuskirche deviated in numerous points from the regulations of the Eisenach regulation applied up to then . The church is not facing east , but the altar looks south-east. The building ensemble also lacks orientation towards the cardinal points, and the rectory, parish hall and church are directly connected to one another.

Interior design

The original, restored Art Nouveau chandelier (detail)

In the interior, the ideals of the Wiesbaden program can be seen : the room is oriented towards the altar, which is enclosed by the concentric arched chairs and the ensemble of the singing and organ loft. On the upper floor, the galleries surround three quarters of the room and focus attention on what is happening at the altar.

The visitors enter the room at eye level with the altar. The floor slopes slightly in the direction of this, so that a very good view of the altar and sermon desk is also possible from the back rows. The interior is richly decorated with subtle ornaments, which are particularly evident in the details of the lamps and fittings.

On the central dome of the hall ceiling hangs the original chandelier , restored in 2018 in accordance with the preservation order , a unique specimen created for this church hall. The 2.67 meter high and 2.60 meter wide chandelier, weighing almost 500 kilograms, is made of brass with glass inserts - the upper part of the chandelier is designed as an openwork hemisphere from which wreaths of light bulbs hang down. Its lower tip is shaped like a lantern with cut glasses.

In July 2018 the chandelier was dismantled, the structure hanging on steel chains was left on the ground, dismantled and brought to the workshop of the Weidauer Metallrestaurierung company in Meerane, where the brass parts were renovated, the electrics were modernized and the suspension was made stable for the next 100 years. In December 2018, the chandelier returned to its place. The restoration was possible with the support of the monument protection, the German Foundation for Monument Protection and donations.

Since it reopened on May 3, 2019, the church has a total of 692 seats (436 on the ground floor plus 256 on the three galleries) - the originally preserved oak chairs from 1910 consist of generously sized single folding armchairs.


Altar, pulpit and organ (before restoration)
On the Dientes winch (manufactured by Pollrich & Co. Leipzig ) of Jehmlich organ as technology monument on the grounds Philip. The green electric motor built by Sachsenwerk Dresden was probably installed in 1956.

The organ inauguration concert took place on October 16, 1910 . At the console sat Paul EF Gerhardt (1867–1946), organist and music director from Zwickau, according to whose specifications the organ was created and who, as an expert, had helped to build the organ and accepted the instrument. The organ and the church form a special architectural unit that is committed to Romanticism .

The organ was built by Jehmlich Orgelbau Dresden . At the time of the inauguration, the instrument with its Art Nouveau facade , with 63 registers , three manuals and pedal , was one of the most powerful and versatile instruments in the region. What was new at the time was the ability to save up to 30 freely selectable registrations and call them up at the push of a button.

Today the instrument is technically playable, but no longer or not yet suitable for musical use. While the prospectus is in good condition, the interior requires thorough restoration and cleaning. Most of the leather membranes are brittle and need to be renewed. Due to minor damage to the action , some pipes can no longer be played.

On Christmas Eve 2013 the organ sounded once after the console had been cleaned and gave an idea of ​​the rich sound possibilities that a comprehensive restoration promises. It is estimated that 90 percent of the registers are originally preserved. According to experts, the organ is generally in good condition and of high monument value.

The organ restoration was entrusted to the organ restorer Stefan Pilz (44). Because of Pilz's fatal traffic accident on November 19, 2018, it has since been unclear how and when the organ restoration can be continued and successfully completed.

The Jehmlich organ has 53 sounding stops (also 2 transmissions and 4 extensions, 4 stops are not implemented), which are placed on a pneumatically operated cone chest in the following disposition :

I Manual C – a 3
Principal 16 ′
Drone 16 ′
Principal 8th'
Drone (ext.) 8th'
Gemshorn 8th'
Flute harmonique 8th'
Viol 8th'
Salicional 8th'
Octave 4 ′
Reed flute 4 ′
Dolce (vacat) 4 ′
Intoxicating fifth II 2 23
Cornett III-IV
Mixture III-V
Trumpet 8th'
Clarine (Ext.) 4 ′
II Manual C – a 3
Drone 16 ′
Principal 8th'
Reed flute 8th'
Floating Flute I. 8th'
Concert flute 8th'
viola 8th'
Dolce (vacat) 8th'
Principal 4 ′
Gemshorn 4 ′
Distance flute 4 ′
Nassat 2 23
Piccolo 2 ′
third 1 35
Seventh 1 17
Progressio IV
oboe 8th'
III Manual C – a 3
Dumped 16 ′
Violin principal 8th'
Lovely Gedackt 8th'
Quintatön 8th'
Soft flute 8th'
Pointed flute 8th'
violin 8th'
Aeoline 8th'
Vox coelestis I 8th'
Transverse flute 4 ′
Fugara 4 ′
Viola d'amore 4 ′
Cane fifth 2 23
Flautino 2 ′
Sifflute (vacat) 1'
Harmonia aetheria III – IV
Trompette harmonique 8th'
Clarinet 8th'
Pedal C – f 1
PrincipalBass 16 ′
Stand (ext.) 32 ′
Sub bass 16 ′
Gedackt bass (from III) 16 ′
Violon 16 ′
Accordion bass 16 ′
Gedackt bass (from III) 8th'
Bass flute 8th'
violoncello 8th'
Principal flute 4 ′
trombone 16 ′
Bass trumpet (ext.) 8th'
Bass fifth (vacat) 10 23
  • Pairing :
    • Normal coupling: II / I, III / I, III / II, I / P, II / P
    • Sub-octave coupling: II / II, III / II
    • Super octave coupling: I / I, II / II, III / II


The ringing consists of four bells made of cast steel with the tones h 0 +/- 0, d 1 −3, e 1 −6 and g 1 +4, cast in 1909 by the Bochumer Verein .

The consecration of bells took place in 1909 - the ringing was the first made of cast steel in Leipzig and is now Leipzig's only surviving cast steel bell from the turn of the century and thus the oldest of its kind in Leipzig.

There are four sound steel bells with diameters between 1.17 and 1.77 meters at home in the bell cage. They bear the following inscriptions:

  • "Watch, stand in faith, be male and be strong." (1 Cor 16: 3)
  • "O land, land, land, hear the word of the Lord" (Jer 22:29)
  • "Shout out to God all the earth." (Ps 66: 1)
  • “Ask, and it will be given to you” (Mt 7.7)

Tower clock

An oversized dial shows the current time in all four directions, which is transmitted by the mechanical, fully functional clockwork that has been preserved in the original. The tower clock strikes every hour on the hour and is thus an audible and visible guide through the day and - thanks to the interior lighting - also through the night.



  • The first concerts for the reopening in early May 2019 with the church sold out were presented by Martin Kohlstedt with the Gewandhaus choir and the songwriter Gerhard Schöne with the Gewandhaus children's choir .
  • For the festive reopening, the type of beer Philippus-Bräu was brewed in the Hartmannsdorf brewery and offered in 0.33-liter bottles.
  • At the end of June 2019, the Anton-Philipp-Reclam-Schule Leipzig, a grammar school, used the Philippus Church as the location for the ceremonial handover of the Abitur certificates.
  • The church hall can also be rented as an event location.


Self publications

  • Philippus: Inclusive Hotel - Celebrations & Meetings - Catering , pdf, 2019
  • Program for the reopening of the Church of Philip (May 3, 2019). With a greeting from Mayor Burkhard Jung , A5 format with 28 pages, Leipzig 2019
  • Cheat sheet for our hosts . Booklet for tours through the church with information on the special features of the Philippuskirche, format A6 with 24 pages, Leipzig around 2014
Philip series

The Philippus series is available in print and online as a pdf:

Book contribution

  • Christiane Domke and Harald Baumann: Aurelienstraße 54 - From the rectory to the hotel . P. 22 in: Annekatrin Merrem: Monument protection and preservation of monuments Leipzig - examples from practice . In: City of Leipzig, Office for Building Regulations and Monument Preservation, Department of Monument Preservation (Ed.): Edition 2018 (without ISBN) . Gehrig, Merseburg 2018, p. 80 (total), A4 format .

Newspaper and magazine articles

Web links

Commons : Philippuskirche  - Collection of pictures, videos and audio files

See also

Individual evidence

  1. Jens Rometsch: The newly renovated Philippus Church will be opened on May 3rd with the former Bishop Bohl - What happened to the Philippus Ensemble at Aurelienstraße 54 borders on a miracle. The church in Lindenau stood empty for 15 years. But now it has turned into a project that is unique in Germany - with an integration hotel, beer garden, event rooms and the newly renovated church as a cultural center. Leipziger Volkszeitung , online portal, April 17, 2019. Retrieved April 22, 2019 .
  2. ^ Jens Rometsch: Integrationshotel Philippus starts today. Leipziger Volkszeitung , online edition. Retrieved May 5, 2018 .
  3. ^ A b Jens Rometsch: Philippus Church in Lindenau is being completely renovated. Leipziger Volkszeitung , online edition. Retrieved May 5, 2018 .
  4. The other is the institutional church of the Diakonie in Halle (Saale) .
  5. ^ Speech manuscript by Jochen Bohl, template.
  7. There should be funds for Philip. Leipziger Volkszeitung, local section Leipzig, October 27, 2016, p. 16.
  8. ^ Federal government supports the Philip project. Leipziger Volkszeitung, April 10, 2017, p. 16.
  9. ^ Lindenau: City of Leipzig supports the renovation of the Philippuskirche - injection of funds for the renovation of the Philippuskirche in Leipzig-Lindenau. The city is funding the project with around half a million euros. The money comes from compensation amounts in the quarter. Leipziger Volkszeitung , online portal. Retrieved July 8, 2018 .
  10. ^ The Philippuskirche in Leipzig-Lindenau receives further DSD help. , online portal. Retrieved July 8, 2018 .
  11. ^ Concerts on the canal
  12. Philip Series, Volume 5 , p. 8.
  13. Jennifer Strache: Only one person shines above all. The Art Nouveau chandelier in the Phlippus Church in Leipzig. In: Monuments. Magazine for monument culture in Germany. Issue 4/2019, p. 29.
  14. Jump up ↑ Philip Series, Volume 5 , p. 30.
  15. ^ Protestant press service : First Leipzig integration hotel officially opened. Der Sonntag , online edition. Retrieved May 5, 2018 .
  16. Jens Rometsch: Leipzig's first integration hotel opens in January 2018 . Online article in the Leipziger Volkszeitung, accessed on March 3, 2019.
  17. The chandelier is of central importance for the structural message of the sacred building. Following the idea of ​​the Wiesbaden program, it symbolizes: "Christ, the light of the world" (Jn 8:12). Pastor, choir, organist and congregation are a community at eye level in a circle - only Christ is above them. One person should not put himself above the other. Faith grants God the final rulership - and frees people from the temptation to put themselves above others, for example to prove their own worth. - Source: Philip newsletter, July 2018.
  18. Philip Series, Volume 4 . Leipzig 2014, pp. 8, 10, 12.
  19. Gregor Meyer's diploma thesis from 2003 is dedicated to the organist of the St. Marien Church in Zwickau , Paul EF Gerhardt (1867–1946) - Gerhardt, as an organ expert, was able to realize his ideal organ with the Jehmlich organ of the Philippus Church in Leipzig. Sources: Philip Series, Volume 4 . Leipzig 2014, p. 21, and Philip series, Volume 5 , Leipzig 2014, p. 28.
  20. ^ Organ and church interior (= Philippusreihe , Volume 4), pp. 12, 15, 20; The story of Philip (= Philip series , volume 5), p. 30 (PDF).
  21. Andrea Hamann-Richter: In shock: Organ restorer of the Laurentiuskirche dies in a car accident. Mitteldeutsche Zeitung , online portal, November 24, 2018. Accessed December 1, 2018 .
  22. Disposition of the Jehmlich organ from 1910. In: Orgel und Kirchenraum (= Philippus series , Volume 4), p. 20 (PDF).
  23. Rainer Thümmel in: Bells in Saxony - Sound between heaven and earth. Leipzig 2015, ISBN 978-3-374-02871-9 , p. 322.
  24. Philip Series, Volume 4 , p. 11

Coordinates: 51 ° 19 ′ 55.5 "  N , 12 ° 19 ′ 45.7"  E