Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

7/24/2012 (3 years ago)

Catholic Online (

German church still hosts active Benedictine Abbey

St. Matthias Abbey Church or Abtei St. Matthias in Trier, Germany, is a beautiful 12th-century church, part of an active Benedictine abbey and is still visited by many Catholic pilgrims. The abbey houses the relics of St. Matthias, the apostle who was chosen to replace Judas Iscariot as he was a witness to the Resurrection.

A Baroque facade was added to the lower west front, which centers on a sculpture of St. Matthias holding an axe. The figure holds an open book with a reference to John 15:14: 'You are my friends if you do what I command.'

A Baroque facade was added to the lower west front, which centers on a sculpture of St. Matthias holding an axe. The figure holds an open book with a reference to John 15:14: "You are my friends if you do what I command."


By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (

7/24/2012 (3 years ago)

Published in Travel

Keywords: St. Matthias Abbey Church, Abtei St. Matthias, Trier, Germany

LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - As it reads in the New Testament, Acts 1:26 reports that Matthias was chosen to replace Judas. Matthias was one of the 72 disciples Jesus sent out during his ministry, according to early Bible writers. Matthias is reported to have lived an ascetic life in order to make his spirit subject to the Crucified One.

Matthias preached in Cappadocia, Turkey, and was martyred at Colchis, on the eastern coast of the Black Sea. He was sentenced to be stoned to death but miraculously survived the ordeal. He was later beheaded.

Constantine's mother, St. Helena is reputed to have brought St. Matthias' relics from Jerusalem and evenly divided them between the Basilica of St. Mary Major in Rome and this abbey church at Trier.

The monks enshrined these relics in Trier in a beautifully carved tomb before the altar. Records dating back to the 5th century indicate the existence of a monastery here, on the graves of the first Christian evangelists.

Both monastery and church were rebuilt after the disaster of Maundy Thursday of 882 when the Normans conquered and destroyed Trier. Most of the church that remains today dates from the Romanesque period, or 1127-1160. The church was consecrated in 1148 by Pope Eugene III.

St. Matthias Abbey Church overlooks a large plaza surrounded by attractive white buildings. The Romanesque church is plastered white and painted with orange accents.

A Baroque facade was added to the lower west front, which centers on a sculpture of St. Matthias holding an axe. The figure holds an open book with a reference to John 15:14: "You are my friends if you do what I command."

A "westwork" at the west end of the church features a tower of blind arcades and a gallery inside. There are two Romanesque towers at the east end, with square piers and simple round arches with no decoration, illuminated by small windows in the clerestory.

There is also the impressive ribbed vaulting, which continues into the westwork and the transepts. Painted roof bosses of bishops, angels and saints adorn each vault intersection. It's suggested that visitors bring binoculars or a zoom lens for a good look. The side aisles have a simple Romanesque groin vault.

The Tomb of the Apostle, with a barefooted marble effigy of Matthias, lies at the front of the nave surrounded by tall candles. The crypt also contains two large sarcophagi labeled with Latin names.

South of the church is the Benedictine Abbey of St. Matthias, with a 13th-century refectory and dormitory and 18th-century main building. Early Romanesque cloisters have been partly restored.

The abbey museum also hosts a significant collection of artifacts, paintings and historical documents.



Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'

Copywriter 2015 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for October 2015
That human trafficking, the modern form of slavery, may be eradicated.
Evangelization: That with a missionary spirit the Christian communities of Asia may announce the Gospel to those who are still awaiting it.


More Travel

Never before seen Vatican artifacts on display in Philadelphia Watch

Image of Pope Pius IX's processional cross.


A preview of "Vatican splendors" can be seen in an exhibit at the Franklin Institute that showcases never before seen relics and art pieces from the Vatican. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - A collection of over 200 items from the Vatican that have never been seen ... continue reading

Visit historic Catholic sites in New York Watch

Image of Visit New York City's Historically Catholic architecture!

By Kenya Sinclair (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The New York Times released "A Tourist's Guide to Catholic New York," indicating which prominent locations in New York City stand out for their Catholic annotations and historic relevance. NEW YORK CITY, NY (Catholic Online) - People have made a journey to New York ... continue reading

'We were able to walk where Jesus walked': Pastor strives to become peacemaker while visiting the Holy Land Watch

Image of Pastor John Moyle offered to be a peacemaker between Israel and Palestine.

By Kenya Sinclair (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Pastor John Moyle wanted to visit Israel not as a tourist, but as a peacemaker. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Moyle, who is a social justice minister at Oakbrook Church in Reston, Va., wanted his church group to become peacemakers throughout Israel and ... continue reading

Want to visit Cuba? Here are 5 things to keep in mind! Watch

Image of Visit Cuba today!

By Kenya Sinclair (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

With diplomatic relations between the United States and Cuba restored, Americans have already started to plan Cuban vacations with thoughts of eating good food and soaking up plenty of sunshine -but what should Americans keep in mind as they plan?  LOS ANGELES, CA ... continue reading

St. Michael's Mount Watch

Image of St. Michael's Mount is located on an area that is supposedly part of a mythical kingdom that was destroyed by the sea.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

St Michael's Mount is a tidal island located 366 meters, (400 yd) off the Mount's Bay coast of Cornwall in the United Kingdom. It is a civil parish and is united with the town of Marazion by a man-made causeway of granite setts, passable between mid-tide and low ... continue reading

Interactive map gives users a 'blast from the past' of Old San Francisco Watch

Image of Two encoders have taken a Google Street View Map and turned into an interactive look at San Francisco of the 19th and early 20th centuries.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Call it a virtual time machine. Two encoders have taken a Google Street View Map and turned into an interactive look at San Francisco of the 19th and early 20th centuries. It may very well be the closest to a trip back in time. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) ... continue reading

Will Pope Francis' visit draw a big crowd? Hotel vacancies point to lower numbers than expected Watch

Image of

By Abigail James (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Hotel owners across Philadelphia hoped Pope Francis' visit would become a major payday. However, as the pontiff's visit quickly approaches, a quarter of Philadelphia's 11,200 hotel rooms are still vacant for the time during his visit, according to Fortune. LOS ... continue reading

Skulls, pets, babies and the dead: The strangest things people try to smuggle on airplanes Watch

Image of


Airport security is one of the toughest to go through and is necessary to ensure the safety of those inside terminals, on planes and at the plane's destination. However, some people attempt to bypass TSA security measures to smuggle strange items in hilariously ... continue reading

Spectacular photos reveal 'alien world' (PHOTOS) Watch

Image of Image of the cave discovered beneath Phong Nha Ke Bang National Park in Vietnam (Ryan Deboodt/Caters News).


Locals discovered a cave near Phong Nha Ke Bang National Park last month, which was explored by adventure photographer Ryan Deboodt. As Deboodt's pictures show, it was like entering a breathtaking beautiful alien world. MUNTINLUPA, PHILIPPINES (Catholic Online) - Walls ... continue reading

Top Ten: World's Least Friendly Cities Watch

Image of The citizens in Moscow, Russia are not as friendly as they could be.

By Kenya Sinclair (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

When you think of friendly cities, images of smiling faces, well-behaved children, and quiet neighborhoods come to mind. However, the following top ten list contains the top least friendly cities! LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA (Catholic Online) - This list of the world's ... continue reading

All Travel News


Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Subscribe to Catholic OnlineYouTube Channel

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Joel 1:13-15; 2:1-2
13 Priests, put on sackcloth and lament! You ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 9:2-3, 6, 16, 8-9
6 the enemy is wiped out -- mere ruins for ever -- ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 11:15-26
15 But some of them said, 'It is through Beelzebul, ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for October 9th, 2015 Image

Sts. Denis, Rusticus, and Eleutherius
October 9: The first mention we have of these three martyrs who died around ... Read More