Architectural blasphemy…

Nightmare in Concrete:
The ‘Queen of Peace’ Pilgrimage Church of Neviges

(image: Shutterstock/Lato Pictures)

In a contest for most hideous Novus Ordo church in the world, the Mariendom in the German town of Neviges would no doubt be a formidable contender.

Officially known as Mary Queen of Peace Pilgrimage Church, this monstrosity is a prime example of the architectural style appropriately called ‘brutalism’. Construction of the edifice began in 1966; it was solemnly dedicated on May 22, 1968.

Neviges is a district of Velbert, which is part of the archdiocese of Cologne. The town has been a site of pilgrimage in honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary since the 17th century. The need for a large church had arisen to be able to accommodate the many visitors since the end of World War II.

The man ultimately responsible for the construction of this travesty of a Catholic church was Cardinal Josef Frings (1887-1978), who chose the design proposed by architect Gottfried Böhm (1920-2021) in the immediate aftermath of the Second Vatican Council (1962-1965).

At the council, Frings had been a major force for the Modernists, and so was the priest he had brought along as his theological advisor (peritus): a certain Fr. Joseph Ratzinger, today better known as ‘Pope’ Benedict XVI.

The Mariendom in Neviges is a perfect image of the Vatican II Church: earthly, weird, ugly, twisted, repulsive. It manifests an intense sickness of soul, as the following photos demonstrate:

(image: Shutterstock/Peeradontax)

(image: Shutterstock/Peeradontax)

Not surprisingly, the interior isn’t any better:

(image: Wikimedia Commons/Gunnar Klack/CC BY-SA 4.0 DEED)

(image: Wikimedia Commons/Gunnar Klack/CC BY-SA 4.0 DEED)

(image: Wikimedia Commons/Gunnar Klack/CC BY-SA 4.0 DEED)

(image: Wikimedia Commons/Gunnar Klack/CC BY-SA 4.0 DEED)

(image: Shutterstock/Peeradontax)

Many more images of the exterior and interior of the Mariendom can be found here.

Also, the following video clips provide more views of the ‘pilgrimage church’, both inside and out, as well as some photos of its construction:

This is the stuff of nightmares!

As we said in the beginning, this ‘pilgrimage church’ in Neviges would be a top contender for ugliest Novus Ordo church in the world.

Whether it could beat Vienna’s Most Holy Trinity Church, however, is another question….

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