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Bryn Athyn

Cathedral for the General Church of New Jerusalem (New Church)

Bryn Athyn

The beauty of Bryn Athyn Cathedral in Montgomery County. Credit: Valley Forge Convention and Visitors Bureau

Description

The Experience

This welcoming stone Cathedral, with Gothic archways, stained glass windows and carved woodwork, is the spiritual center of Bryn Athyn, a religious community with its own school system and museum. Symbolism connects theological doctrine to the Cathedral’s design, using elements of medieval simplicity and the American arts & crafts movement.

Sun shining through red and blue stained glass in the Chancel bathes the altar Bible in a purple light representing God. The “woman clothed with the sun” in the west window of the sanctuary represents the New Church. Through the south transept is a small chapel with windows picturing scenes from the sacred Writings of the New Church.

History

The Church of New Jerusalem (New Church) was formed in England in the late 1700’s, to worship using the Old and New Testaments and Writings which interpret the Bible as parable (written by Swedish philosopher Emanuel Swedenborg). In the late 1800’s, a Philadelphia New Church congregation moved out of the city to Bryn Athyn. Principal patron John Pitcairn financed the construction of the Cathedral, which was dedicated in 1919.

Other Information

Open daily for tours (call to confirm), Tue – Sun. Groups of 10 or more with appointment. Grounds open during daylight (except during services).

Insider Tip

The monel metal of the door handles, which shines the more it is used, mirrors the belief that the more useful a human life, the more brilliant is its heavenly reward.

Kids’ Stuff

Hands-on tours are available for kids, where they can try carving stone and can see how stained glass is made.

Details

900 Cathedral Road Bryn Athyn, PA 19009
(215) 947-0266
Website

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