Especially for the Rotterdam Architecture Month, churches, mosques, temples and synagogues organise activities from May 28 to June 4. Heilige Huisjes (which translates into ‘Holy Houses’) aims to introduce Rotterdammers to religious buildings in the city.
The event is an initiative of the municipality of Rotterdam and De Kerkvernieuwers. Since 2020, the municipality has been working towards a sustainable future for religious buildings. De Kerkvernieuwers is a foundation that promotes the social use of church buildings throughout the country.
“It’s nice that there is a varied program with many places of worship taking part,” responds alderman Said Kasmi (Education, Culture & Tourism). “Every place has a story: whether it is a large monumental church, a synagogue or mosque in a converted school or a Hindu temple behind an inconspicuous facade. And, of course, it says something about Rotterdam and its citizens. Wonderful!”
Locals can discover various places of worship in a broad program. The Michaëlkerk organizes a lecture on organic architecture and there are tours of the Mevlana Mosque, Eritrean Orthodox Church, Buddhist temple Phuntsok Chö Ling and the synagogue of the Liberal Jewish Congregation. In St. Mary’s Church, there is a spoken word event, a second-hand book market and a lecture on Rotterdam’s places of worship. Verhalenhuis Belvédère organises tours along prayer houses in Rotterdam South.
Art lovers can visit open ateliers and exhibitions in the Pauluskerk, the Familiekerk, and the Kerk van de Nazarener. The Salvation Army organizes a second-hand clothing market.
The Grote Kerk Overschie, the Doopsgezinde Kerk, the Hillegondakerk and Pro Rege are the backdrops for concerts. And the Dorpskerk Hoek van Holland organises a cabaret show.
Heilige Huisjes is free of charge. The complete program can be found at: www.heiligehuisjesrotterdam.nl/locaties