Troisdorf-Müllekoven St Adelheid
St Adelheid-Kirche is located in Troisdorf-Müllekoven, a village in Nordrhein-Westfalen about 5 miles north-east of Bonn.
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Visiting Troisdorf-Müllekoven St Adelheid
As with the other churches in NRW on this website, St. Adelheid in Troisdorf-Müllekoven is a modern church which, apart from the round tower, has nothing in common with the medieval churches e.g. in East Anglia. But even this church has an amazingly beautiful atmosphere for a modern church.
Like the churches in Hagen and Kierspe, it was built according to plans by the Böhm family of architects, in this case by Prof. Gottfried Böhm. The foundation stone was laid on 30 September 1962 and the consecration took place on 11 February 1967. Like the other Böhm churches, it has a very unusual ground plan, which in this case goes back to the idea of a medieval castle.
The church is a modern brick building. The nave forms a rectangular hall, built of red bricks, covered by a flat roof. The semicircular apse adjoins to the north. The chancel, which projects into the nave, is crowned by an asymmetrical roof, which towers over the structure in the form of a strangely designed dome with a sloping tip. In the south wall is a round bell tower, 26 m high, half pushed into the nave, which is closed by a pointed conical roof with a seated cock. There are four bells in it. A small round tower in the east wall forms the baptistery. Two semi-circular projections in the form of halved cones in the west wall are designed as confessionals.
The forecourt is laid out as an almost closed inner courtyard or modern kind of atrium. In this courtyard is the fountain, which measures almost 3 m in total height. A broad octagonal bowl rests on a 95 cm high marble column, above which rises the bronze statue of Saint Adelheid. On the eastern flank of the atrium, a covered walkway leads to the main entrance door.
On entering the church, one is immediately struck by the unusually large holy water font. It is made of the same stone and is the same height as the baptismal font in the baptistery adjoining the east wall. This is a first highlight of the church, especially in sunshine, as the stained glass consisting of yellow and blue colour patterns then bathe the baptistery in a particularly beautiful light. In addition to the aforementioned 70 cm high baptismal font, a light grey marble block in the shape of a bucket, which is supported by a base made of the same material and crowned by an “amethyst bud” on the top of the lid, as well as the stained glass windows, the chapel also contains a relief panel depicting the Ascension of Christ. The 115 cm high wooden relief, signed “Auger 1948”, has no colouring. A few steps further on, on a brick plinth, there is a 120 cm high statue of the Virgin Mary carved out of wood, without any colouring. A banner on the pedestal describes her as the Queen of Peace.
During my visit shortly before Christmas, further north on the east wall was the large nativity scene; unusual were especially the figure of the Sieg ferryman and the frog; the frog and the crow sitting in the fir tree next to it (unfortunately not visible in the photos) symbolise the neighbouring villages of Müllekoven (crow) and Bergheim (frog).
The open basement of the bell tower is separated from the nave only by a parapet. This is where the small organ is located. To the right and left of the tower, the stained glass windows, showing dark red roses on a green and white background, let a completely different light than that of the baptistery into the interior.
On the west wall can be found my personal highlight of the church, namely the Stations of the Cross by the Hennef artist Manfred Saul. The stations are cast in bronze. The groups of people, set in strong frames, in rough, coarse form, comparable to an expressive modern woodcut, stand freely against the red brick wall. In almost all the stations, the cross dominates, projecting beyond the framing.
The eye-catcher of the church interior is the raised chancel. Although only two small deep windows in the apse wall seem to let in light, it appears very bright. This is due on the one hand to the white exposed concrete, and on the other hand to a window in the south side of the choir dome, which allows indirect light to enter. The choir room was given its present version around 1990 and has been adapted to the post-conciliar needs.
The 100 cm high refectory, made of only moderately grained marble of a light brownish colour, stands on the mammary floor of the choir. It consists of a 15 cm high plinth, the 55 cm high stipes, followed by a 15 cm wide surrounding leaf frieze, and the 15 cm thick tabletop resting on it.
In the course of the redesign of the chancel, the cross was also re-framed and designed as a hanging cross. It now hangs above the altar.
The tabernacle stands at the end of the choir. The branches of a tree seem to grow out of a 100 cm high round column to a total height of 210 cm. The actual sacrament house is hidden in the foliage. The bronze covering of the vault door shows the “holy city” as it is seen and described in the visions of the prophet Ezekiel and in the Apocalypse of John.
The ambo, made of the same material as the altar, is 126 cm high. On a 6 cm high profiled pedestal rises an 80 cm high round column, crowned by a surrounding leaf ornament; above it the column widens into a reading desk. The priest’s seat and the altar boys’ seats, also made of marble, correspond to the furnishings of the choir room.
These information were taken from the parish leaflet “A Tour of St Adelheid”.