St. Thomas Church in Leipzig
One of the more famous Lutheran churches is St. Thomas Church in Leipzig, Germany. It was originally built as a Roman Catholic Church. This was the church in the town where the famous Leipzig Debate between Martin Luther and Johannes Eck was held in 1519. Eck was in charge of defending the Catholic Church's practices against Luther's attacks. The Debate was witnessed by leading religious scholars and resulted in the censure of Luther by the Pope. He was threatened with being ex-communicated if he did not stop his attacks on Church doctrine.
The history of this church with the Lutheran sect continued. Martin Luther preached from the church's pulpit in 1539. He introduced his ideas of the Reformation of the Church there on Pentecostal Sunday. Located in northern Germany, Leipzig was close to the area where many of Luther's followers were located. This church eventually aligned itself with the Lutherans and remains part of that denomination today.
While its denomination is important to church members, there have been a number of famous people associated with this church. It was the home of German's most famous boys' choir for centuries. Johann Sebastian Bach was one of the choir leaders as well as the musical director for the church. He was employed by St. Thomas from 1723 until 1750. His remains were moved to the church in 1950, 200 years after his death. Today the church still displays a statue of Bach. It was created by German sculptor Carl Seffner and dedicated in 1908.
There have been a number of notable German artists associated with this church. Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart played the church's organ in 1908. Richard Wagner, the famous German composer was baptized at the church in 1813. This church building has been a part of many different historical events and is a wonderful place to learn more about German history and the Lutheran church.