Church of England Diocese of Guildford Dunsfold


4 Mar 2021, 8 p.m.

A new place of worship is set to be built in Berlin that will bring together Christians, Jews and Muslims under one roof.

It will be called the House of One and the foundation stone will be laid on May 27. The building will cost £52m and will incorporate a church, a mosque and a synagogue as well as a central meeting space.

It is a remarkable demonstration of interfaith unity in a part of the old East Berlin where the former Communist regime attempted to outlaw religion. In fact, the site for development is the former St Peter's Church in Petriplatz which was damaged in the Second World War and demolished in 1964 by the GDR authorities.

When the foundations of the former church were uncovered more than a decade ago thoughts turned to creating a memorial or building a new church on the site. But Richard Stolte, a Christian theologian who helped start the project explained: "The idea is pretty simple. We wanted to build a house of prayer and learning where these three religions could co-exist while each retaining their own identity."

Andreas Nachkam, a rabbi who is turning the vision into reality in partnership with a pastor and imam, added: "There are many ways to God and each is a good way. In the House of One, Christians, Muslims and Jews would worship separately but would visit each other for religious holidays, commemorations and celebrations.

"It is more than a symbol. It is the start of a new era where we show there is no hate between us."