It is eerie to walk amongst the ruins left in the wake of war. In Hannover, Germany St. Aegiden’s Church presents an opportunity to do so in a most spectacular way. The church, like much of Hannover, was bombed during World War II and only the bell-tower and shell of the sanctuary remained. Many other churches in similar circumstances were either rebuilt (see Hildesheim as a great example) or knocked down completely.
But not St. Aegiden’s. It sits today in roughly the same shape as it has for the nearly 70 years since it was attacked on 9 October 1943.
Walking around the interior gives a feeling for both the structure which once existed as well as the power of destruction which hit the area.
There is an art project currently installed at the church which provides an interesting view at night. Some of the windows have been partially filled with multi-colored panels which are lit from the inside, emulating stained glass. It makes for quite a site when they are lit up after the sun goes down.
While walking around the site I couldn’t help but feel a connection to the destruction at Hiroshima which I visited in late 2011. And I’m not the only one; there is a bell handing at the base of the church tower which was sent from Hiroshima to share with Hannover in their memory of the destruction which war brings.
Both cities have seen the destruction preserved as a reminder to future generations. I see something incredibly powerful in that statement.
Never miss another post: Sign up for email alerts and get only the content you want direct to your inbox.