Jour Fixe March
A particular treat was in store for attendees of WiB's Jour Fixe in March: A guided tour of St. Hedwig's Cathedral, with a subsequent presentation by architect Peter Sichau, of Sichau & Walter, in Fulda. His firm submitted the winning design for the redevelopment of the interior and structural surroundings of the cathedral, located in the heart of Berlin.
St. Hedwig's Cathedral is the episcopal church the Archdiocese of Berlin, as well as the parish church of Mitte district's Friedrichstadt cathedral congregation, and the most important gathering place for Berlin's Catholic community.
By order of Frederick the Great, who desired a domed structure for Berlin's Catholics, this prominent place of worship was modeled on the Roman Pantheon (from the Greek words "pan": all, and "theos": god). Having undergone diverse modifications and the destructive bombardment of WWII, in its new form, according to the architect, the design of the cathedral will assert itself for the next 200 years.
Over the course of three hours, starting with the existing interior circular form, the architect outlined his vision of a rotunda church, and of the creation of a true lower level for daily masses and baptisms, achieved by closure of the base of the inner staircase. Thanks to excellent English interpretation of the architect's compelling talk, it was a morning thoroughly enjoyed by all.