St Hedwig's is a prominent Roman Catholic Cathedral located on the Bebelplatz in Berlin. It was constructed by order of 'Frederick the Great' of Prussia and consecrated in 1773.
St Hedwig's Cathedral is often associated with the heroic actions taken in 1938 by the then cathedral's canon, Bernhard Lichtenberg, who is remembered for his courageous stand against the persecution of the Jews. He prayed for the Jews and denounced the Nazis treatment towards them. For this he was arrested as a traitor and he died while on his way to the Dachau concentration camp. His remains were later removed from their original site in 1965 and interred in a crypt at St Hedwig.
The cathedral was badly destroyed during World War II and the interior was completely gutted by fire. Between 1952 and 1963 it underwent a huge reconstruction. Much of the exterior has been restored to its former glory but the interior has been modernized.
The exterior was designed along the lines of the Pantheon in Rome. The building is certainly eye catching and invites the visitor in. Although the interior is modern, its simplistic lines complement the more opulent exterior.
It has an air of peacefulness which is conducive to prayer. The stained glass windows diffuse the light entering the cathedral to create a very welcoming, spiritual ambience. It has an impressive split level altar and several tastefully placed art works including a Madonna from the 1500s.
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