History » 1143 - 1901 » Old Schoenstatt » Further Fates

8. What happened to the nuns thereafter

In the Convent of St George in the “Vogelsang”. – Transfer to the Convent of St Barbara on the Leer - Suppression.

The little church adjoining the Convent of St George in Koblenz was dedicated to St Barbara, the patron of the Convent at Schoenstatt. The nuns had an important relic of this holy virgin and martyr - part of her skull enclosed in a silver bust.

When they entered the little convent, the following were present: Kono von Homburg, Official of the ecclesiastical court in Koblenz, Johann Wimpfeling, Chancellor, Nikolaus Piskatoris von Neuendorf, the Dominican Prior in Koblenz, Peter Torney, Koblenz official, and Werner Escher, Procurator und legal advisor to the Elector's court.

The nuns spent only a few years in the “Vogelsang”. The municipal authorities would have liked to have the Convent of St George, and in 1694 they offered the old hospital behind the “Leyr” (Leer, Loehr) in exchange. In 1704 they even offered an additional 1400 Reichstaler. However, the Sisters were not prepared to consider the exchange and undertook a number of structural changes to the house. So municipal authorities then began to put up an additional building next to the hospital and the question of the Sisters moving out seemed to have been dropped.

The nuns then considered adding a vault or dome to their little church. This gave rise to the idea that it might be better to give up their convent and move to the Leer. They liked the new building, so they now proposed an exchange to the municipal authorities. However, the councillors were not prepared to consider it and almost all were opposed to the suggested exchange. In the end the representative of the Augustinian nuns, Captain Deutsch, to remove all the obstacles and difficulties, and after a few months the exchange contract was drawn up.

According to it the hospital would be transferred to St George in the Vogelsant, and the Sisters were to take over the old and new hospital buildings. They had to pay 1000 Reichstaler for the new building, but were allowed to take all movables with them, including the altars and the bells from Schoenstatt.

Immediately after the contract was concluded, the Sisters began building, because they needed a new church and had to adapt the old hospital to their needs. With the exception of the new building, all the buildings were in a poor condition. The hospital had been founded in 1239 by the Dean of St Florin and parish priest of our Lady, Engelbert von Archa. On 12 April 1707 the foundations stone for the new Church of St Barbara was laid, and it was completed by the end of December.

On 31 March 1708 the choir sisters of the old convent left the old building and quietly took possession of the new ones. On 7 April they were followed by the lay sisters, and St George was handed over to the poor.

The further history of St Barbara was unremarkable and no longer fits in here. We followed the Schoenstatt nuns in order to close their history adequately, but especially because all that was left of the Vallendar convent and its church are to be found there.

In 1803 the decree of secularization closed the Convent of St Barbara and scattered the community, which had left its original convent 236 years before.


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