Monday, June 17, 2013

Gräfenhainichen, Halle, and a final evening in Wittenberg

Today we got up early and headed to Gräfenhainichen where our first stop was the Paul Gehardt Chapel which is more of a little museum than a chapel. It  a super awesome to look around all of this! We had our devotions here..... And I got to play the organ! It was an unexpected surprise and it didn't take any convincing at all for me to play it. 

The case was beautiful and I think much of the pipe work is original, but unfortunately, whoever decided to restore this little 7 stop one manual (no pedal) organ didn't consult me. Or Ross. The action was modern. Ugh! It was hard to be musical or sensitive on this heavy action. None the less, I got to play. 

After devotions we took a short walking tour of the town. We saw the spot where Gehardt was born, though the original building burned down long ago. Then we went to the church he was baptized in. Super amazing. 

I am also including a picture of the crucifix. We all know my favorite parts of  Europe are organs, graves, and crucifixes. I wanted to take it home, but figured that would not be advisable. 

After this we hopped on the bus and were off to Halle. Outside the church was a list of organist. Look at these names!

Inside the church are two organs. Handel played the one in the front. I would have killed to play it but for various reasons it did not work out. I did, however cough up a lot of euros and bought every CD they had for sale and can't wait to hear them. Here is the organ I would have liked to play. 

The gentleman in charge of the church let us in a little back room to see the death mask of Luther. Also, there was a plaster cast taken that was the. I've seen these before, but supposedly the one here is the original, which got me all excited in a nerdy sort of way. 

From here it was back to Wittenberg for an afternoon of free time. I toured the Luther house and enjoyed every second of that, though I didn't take any pictures.  I also went into the Lucas Cranach house and toured the museum there. After this I met up with the group for a dinner that proved quite amusing, and then Ross and I took one final walk around Wittenberg. I adore this city and the weather tonight was perfectly delightful, with the sun being up until after 10 allowing us to enjoy the cooler evening and walk by all these important churches and buildings one more time. We ship out tomorrow at 8am for another day packed full. 

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