The History of the Cathedral Parish

ttk.jpg Spacer.gifThe Cathedral established a parish with fixed membership in 1613, when Elector Johann Sigismund converted from Lutheranism to the Reformed faith. Since Elector George William’s decree of 1632, which gave the Cathedral special standing among Berlin’s parish churches, all Berlin residents of the Reformed faith have been “parished into” the Cathedral.
With the introduction of the Prussian Union in 1817, the communion of the Lutheran and Reformed Churches was also established at the Cathedral. Beginning in 1817, entrance into the parish had to be expressly declared – as is the case today as well. Around 1870, the parish had approximately 12,000 members.

After the destruction of the Cathedral in 1944 and during the post-war period, up to 1000 Christians gathered in the crypt church for Sunday services.
The division of the city through the building of the Berlin Wall was a heavy burden to the congregation. The parish in West Berlin erected a parish center in the Müllerstrasse, near the Cathedral cemetery. In East Berlin, the parish continued its work in the damaged Cathedral, although the structure of the crypt church had also become unsound. The Baptismal and Matrimonial Chapel was finally restored after 1980, providing the parish with a new location to celebrated religious services.
It took time for the two parishes to grow together after 1989. Both sides had to bring great deal of understanding to this process, and it was not always easy. Since 1993, the Cathedral parish has celebrated religious services in the restored Sermon Church. The Cathedral parish is constantly growing and now includes over 1000 members.