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St. Sebastian Church
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St. Sebastian Church

  

St. Sebastian Church

The erection of the diocesan church was ordered by Archbishop Gero. St. Sebastian Church was built in 1015/16 and became Magdeburg's most venerable sacral building after the cathedral. Custom had it that the mortal remains of Magdeburg's archbishops were laid out here on the first day of their death before they were transferred to the Monastery of Our Lady on the second day and finally buried in the cathedral. 1568 marked the beginning of a gradual transition to Protestantism and in 1573 the first protestant sermon was held by a preacher called Sack. The monastery itself, dedicated to St. Sebastian, was closed down in 1818. The church as we know it today bears traces of an old basilica in Romanesque style which was inaugurated in 1169 and only nineteen years later destroyed by a ravenous blaze. The Romanesque western tower and the Romanesque transept is all that remains of the original building. In 1756, the church was closed to the public and used as a storehouse. Only in 1878 was a mass held again here.
The church suffered considerable damage during the Second World war and extensive restoration work was carried out between 1953 and 1959 as well as between 1982 and 1991. Since 1949, St. Sebastian has been the seat of an archbishop and as a result, in 1994 the church became the cathedral of the established bishopric of Magdeburg. It contains valuable exhibits form the Middle Ages and modern times.

 

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