The Reformed Church (Hervormde Kerk)


Reformed Church

The reformed church is the oldest building at Uelsen and the famous landmark of the village. The lower parts of the 52 m high church tower are Romance, the nave and the west-portal are Gothic. The origins of the christian faith at Uelsen date back to the 7th century. Willibrord, the future archbishop of Utrecht (the Netherlands), passed the Uelsen area in the year 690. One of his attendands was a monk called Werenfrid. He is said to have founded the parish of Uelsen. The catchment area of the Church is told to have reached from Emlichheim to the outskirts of Nordhorn. By the document of the year 1131 the church was subordinated to the St. Petri dignitaries at Utrecht. This document is the first one mentioning the presence of the Uelsen settlement. After the Reformation, Uelsen became Reformed in 1588. The altar, the crucifix and the portaits were removed from the church. Henceforth only the heralding of the words of God were to characterize the services.

On Feb 17, 1683 a flash of lightning destroyed the steeple. The bells melted and fell down through the vaults. As a substitute a small bell was bought at Amsterdam some weeks later. This 127-pound bell now hangs in the small bell tower of the new town hall today. Of art-historical interest are the stalls and the pulpit. The pulpit has got old-dutch epigraphs such as DIE TO DER DORE HENINGEIT DIE IS IEN HERDER DE SCHAPE (Who enters this door is a herdsman of the sheep). Until the ninetees of the 19th century the sermon has been held in dutch language, and not before 1917 the hyms were started to be sung in German.

A characteristic of the reformed service is the psalm hym. The sermon is seen the most important part of the service. The parish is formative influenced by the emphasis of the Words of God and the lesson (confirmation not before an age of 16/17). Around 6500 people belong to the Reformed Church of Uelsen.

Listen to the bells (MP3 128 kbit/s Stereo, 196 kB)

Reformed Church Uelsen, Am Markt, 49843 Uelsen

Services: Sunday 8.45 am and 10.30 am
Children's service: Sunday 10.30 am
Rectory (also pastoral care for vacationers): Wedekindshof 9, 49843 Uelsen, Tel. 05942 / 914693



Reformed Church Egge

By building a small church at Egge in the year 1903 the Reformed parish has accounted for its geographical extension. Idyllic and surrounded by tall oaks the church lies 9 km from Uelsen and 3 km from Itterbeck. It has 250 seats. The organ dates from 1960. In 1967 a youth center was attached to the church. It has been renovated and extended in 1982. The confirmation classes are being held weekly for all three age groups during the winter terms. The church is being looked after by the parish of Uelsen.

Reformed Church Egge, Ringstraße, 49847 Egge

Services: Sunday 10.15 am
Children's Service: Sunday 10.15 am
Rectory: see Uelsen



Reformed Church Wilsum

The Reformed parish of Wilsum has got approximately 1200 members. The rural community lies straight in the heart of the Niedergrafschaft (lower county). The Reformed Christians see themselves as mediators of the Reformers Calvin and Zwingli. These Reformers wished to see the Church taken off all glamour and being built solely upon the basis of the Lord. Accordingly, the services are markedly plain and the church building is of austere beauty. Rhyme psalms are being held in great esteem for the purpose of the sungen praise. Guests are welcomed anytime, not only for attending a service but also for visiting the church building.

Reformed Church Wilsum, In der Stadt 1, 49849 Wilsum

Services: Sunday 10.00 am (1. and 3. Sunday also 8.45 am)
Children's Service Sunday 10.00 am
Children's care center: 1. Sunday of every month 10.00 am
Rectory: In der Stadt 1, 49849 Wilsum, Tel. 05945 / 210



Created: Jul 20, 2000, last modification: Jul 11, 2005