Helfta Monastery

Helfta Monastery
Helfta Monastery

Helfta Monastery

In 1229, Burchard I of Mansfeld and his wife Elisabeth of Schwarzburg founded the monastery of St. Mary below Mansfeld Castle and occupied it with nuns from the St. Burchardi monastery in Halberstadt. In order to find peace, they move to the now desolate Rothardesdorf in 1234. A lack of water necessitates another move to Helfta, where the monastery is endowed with rich possessions. After warlike conflicts with Bishop II of Halberstadt and the counts from the Harz region, the nuns find a new home in 1346 in the monastery of Neu-Helfta at the gates of the town of Eisleben. In the course of the Peasants' Wars, the monastery complex is destroyed in 1525.
After more than 450 years, reconstruction of the monastery church, the convent building and the cloister begins under the patronage of the Bishop of Magdeburg. The Gertrud Chapel was designed by the Brazilian artist Claudio Pastro. On 13 August 1999, seven nuns from the Seligenthal monastery and two other nuns moved into the Helfta monastery and formed a new community under Abbess Maria Assumpta Schenkl.

With its guest house, the monastery today offers visitors the opportunity to find peace and distance from hectic everyday life. A range of courses and spiritual guidance are available on request. Day visitors are invited to take part in the prayer times or get to know the monastery on a one-hour guided tour. The monastery café and the "living labyrinth" in the park are further attractions on the grounds. Books, candles, figurines, crosses, soaps and much more can be purchased in the monastery shop - suitable as small gifts and souvenirs.

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