The St. Paul's Church is a major Gothic Revival architecture building and one of the landmarks of Strasbourg. Built between 1892 and 1897 during the time of the Reichsland Elsass-Lothringen (1870–1918), the church was designed for the Lutheran members of the Imperial German garrison stationed in Strasbourg. In 1919, after the return of Alsace to France, the church was handed over to the Protestant Reformed Church of Alsace and Lorraine and became its second parish church in the town after Bouclier parish.
For the overall design of the church, architect Louis Muller (1842–1898) drew his inspiration from the Elisabeth Church of Marburg, although he did not slavishly copy its design, gracing St. Paul's Church with three large and elaborate rose windows modelled on the (smaller scaled) rose window adorning the façade of St. Thomas' Church. The 20 m high nave was originally supposed to have four bays instead of three and thus the building to be 5 m longer and shaped like a Latin cross; but because of excessive costs due to technical difficulties with the foundations, it was shortened to a Greek cross. Thanks to its spires rising up to 76 m and its spectacular location at the southern extremity of an island in the middle of the largest section of the Ill River, the church can be seen from far away.
The church furnishings were damaged from British and American bombing raids in August 1944, as well as, as far as the stained glass windows are concerned, from a violent hailstorm in 1958, incidentally the same hailstorm that destroyed most of the Botanical Garden's historical greenhouses. The most outstanding feature inside is the main tribune pipe organ of 1897 (modified in 1934 and restored several times since). This is, by the number of pipes and registers as well as by the sheer size of the organ case, one of the largest instruments in Alsace and most probably Eastern France. In 1976, a second pipe organ was installed in the transept.References:
The Basilica of Santa Maria in Trastevere is one of the oldest churches of Rome. The basic floor plan and wall structure of the church date back to the 340s, and much of the structure to 1140-43. The first sanctuary was built in 221 and 227 by Pope Callixtus I and later completed by Pope Julius I.
The inscription on the episcopal throne states that this is the first church in Rome dedicated to Mary, mother of Jesus, although some claim that privilege belongs to the Basilica di Santa Maria Maggiore. A Christian house-church was founded here about 220 by Pope Saint Callixtus I (217-222) on the site of the Taberna meritoria, a refuge for retired soldiers. The area was made available for Christian use by Emperor Alexander Severus when he settled a dispute between the Christians and tavern-keepers.
The church underwent two restorations in the fifth and eighth centuries and in 1140-43 it was re-erected on its old foundations under Pope Innocent II.