Der Kreuzweg in Pfarrkirche St. Nikolaus Schluchsee

Today, in an effort to escape the 100º heat in Freiburg we drove up to Schluchsee, a beautiful lake in the Schwarzwald. What I did not expect was the Pfarrkirche St. Nikolaus. From the outside it appears a fairly traditional looking church, with a large wooden structure. The first hint of something different is the sculpture out front, “Kinderreigen.” It is four children holding hands going around a mitre and staff. The sanctuary itself is a gorgeous work of modern sacred art.

Now while I love modern architecture and like a lot of modern art and I have seen some of the most amazing modern sacred art rarely have I ever seen it work in a church or worship space. Usually it is too brutal and chilling, rather than inviting and affirming as I believe a place of worship should be. This church was very different. So far as I could tell almost all (if not all?) the work was done by Helmut Lutz, a native Freiburger, who did der Kreuzweg, the “Stations of the Cross.” I was only able to capture a few of them with anything like the power and energy of the originals. He clearly also did the altar pieces and even the chairs for the ministers.

While there I also lit a candle for Mack.

It was a beautiful, quiet and reflective space, made all the more meaningful due to the unique Kruezweg. If we had a car longer I would go back again.

The prayer the church had next to the candles, as a guide:

lch kann nicht beten; es fällt mir schwer.
Darum komme ich,
um wenigstens eine Kerze anzuzünden.
lch weiß, eine Kerze ist kein großes Opfer.
Sie ist fast nichts von meiner Arbeit,
von meinem Geld, von dem, was ich habe.
Sie ist nur ein Zeichen,
das Zeichen, dass ich einige Augenblicke
schweigend vor Dir da sein will.
Ein Zeichen, dass ich gekommen bin,
weil ich weiß,
dass Du hier bist,
dass Du mich siehst,
dass Du nicht fern bist meinem Leben,
     meinen Problemen,
     meinen Schwierigkeiten,
     meinen Sorgen, meiner Familie,
     meiner Arbeit, meiner Zukunft,
     meiner Gesundheit, meinen Anliegen:
     meiner Bitte / meiner Klage / meinem Dank.
lch weiß, dass alles,
was ich jeden Tag brauche, von Dir kommt.
Deshalb bete ich zu Dir:

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