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Heilig Landstichting (G): Cenakelkerk (Jan Stuyt & Jos. Margry, 1913-1915)



Heilig Landstichting ('Holy Land Foundation') was founded in 1911 by priest A. Suys after a pilgrimage to Palestine. The goal of the foundation was to teach about Palestine and the life of Christ. In the municipality of Groesbeek, just outside Nijmegen, land was acquired and a small village with a church, monasteries and a biblical open air museum were built. Suys was assisted by artist and future curator P. Gerrits, while fellow participant in the pilgrimage Jan Stuyt designed the church, assisted by Jos. Margry, the last of the famous Margry family of architects to specialize in churches. In 1932-1936 a second church was built (architect unknown), which was never completely finished.
The Cenakelkerk is also known as St. Anthonius van Padua. This name may have been chosen for financial reasons. In that time a rich merchant, J.P. Grewen from Rotterdam, was spending much of his money on churches dedicated to this saint, who he much admired.
In the design of this church Stuyt used many influences from the Byzantine architecture he had seen in Constantinople and Palestine. It's a white-plastered centralized church ,with a dome of reinforced concrete on top, one of the first of that size in the Netherlands. Arranged around the central space are chapels. The choir has a semi-circular apse. The walls of the interior are colorfully painted, a sharp contrast to the white exterior..
In front of the church is a portal with two towers and a balcony in between. The wall at the back of the balcony is decorated with a mosaic of the Last Supper.








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