Basilica of the Fourteen Holy Helpers

Bad Staffelstein, Germany

The Basilica of the Fourteen Holy Helpers (Basilika Vierzehnheiligen) is a late Baroque-Rococo church, designed by Balthasar Neumann and constructed between 1743 and 1772. It is dedicated to the Fourteen Holy Helpers, a group of saints venerated together in the Catholic Church, especially in Germany at the time of the Black Death.

The Basilica faces the important German river Main in Franconia. It sits on a hillside, and on the hillside opposite is Schloss Banz, a former baroque monastery. Together they are known as the Goldene Pforte or golden portal, an entryway to the historic Franconian cities Coburg, Kronach, Kulmbach and Bayreuth.

On 24 September 1445, Hermann Leicht, the young shepherd of a nearby Franciscan monastery, saw a crying child in a field that belonged to the nearby Cistercian monastery of Langheim. As he bent down to pick up the child, it abruptly disappeared. A short time later, the child reappeared in the same spot. This time, two candles were burning next to it. In June 1446, the Leicht saw the child a third time. This time, the child bore a red cross on its chest and was accompanied by thirteen other children. The child said: We are the fourteen helpers and wish to erect a chapel here, where we can rest. If you will be our servant, we will be yours! Shortly after, Leicht saw two burning candles descending to this spot. It is alleged that miraculous healings soon began, through the intervention of the fourteen saints.

The Cistercian brothers to whom the land belonged erected a chapel, which immediately attracted pilgrims. An altar was consecrated as early as 1448. Pilgrimages to the Vierzehnheiligen continue to the present day between May and October.

The central scene of the unobstructed and towering high altar is a lager-than-life painting showing the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. The statues depict her spouse Joseph, her father Joachim, and David and Zachariah.

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Details

Founded: 1743-1772
Category: Religious sites in Germany
Historical period: Emerging States (Germany)

Rating

4.7/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

SACHIT VARMA (3 months ago)
Gorgeous catholic church! This basilica is no doubt one of the most beautiful examples of baroque architecture. The atmosphere inside and around it is very peaceful and serene. The intricate carvings and paintings inside make this church a spectacle to watch. There's an information office beside the church as well for details about its construction and divine stature. It almost feels like a pilgrimage to walk up to this church.. Top place.. highly recommended.
tracey thomas (3 months ago)
It's a beautiful church, with some many fascinating items there.its so peaceful as well.everywhere you look there something that's different.
Anna (5 months ago)
Wonderful church with a great service
Eddy (6 months ago)
The basilica is one of the baroque masterpieces of the world. Only downside for me, is that it's very touristic. You cannot get good pictures or look properly when it's busy. So planning your trip carefully and visit very early, before 9:00 hour, and you might find the church all alone for you to visit
Marian E Haftel (2 years ago)
This is the most gorgeous church interior I have ever visited. I have visited hundreds including many which are more famous... I have a thing about them. This one is inspiring along with the story of its founding. The art is quite interesting. I felt the alter embraces you. We were not allowed to take pictures inside. They would not do it justice anyway.
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