Ludwig & Sophie – The decoration in church

For their religious wedding on 20 May 2023 Prince Ludwig of Bavaria and Sophie-Alexandra Evekink had chose a very special church: the Theatinerkirche St. Kajetan und Adelheid (Theatine Church of St. Cajetan and Adelaide) in München (Munich). When the bridal couple is in München, they regularly visit services in this church.

© Parsifal von Pallandt (with permission)

The wife of the Bavarian Elector Ferdinand Maria, Henriette Adelaide of Savoy, in 1659 swore that if she would give birth to a hereditary prince, she would build “the most beautiful and most valuable church”. Finally in 1662 the later Elector Max II Emanuel was born. Henriette Adelaide and Ferdinand Maria asked the Italian architect Agostino Barelli from Bologna to design the church, that was to become the Court Church and Collegiate Church for the Theatines. Barelli designed a church in Italian high-Baroque style and was inspired by the Sant’Andrea della Valle in Rome, Italy. 1663 the foundation stone was laid, but the building wasn’t finished until 1690 under the architect Enrico Zuccalli, who added the towers and the dome. The Dome is 71 metres high, the towers 66 metres. Furthermore the church is 72 metres long and 15,5 metres wide. It took until 1768 until the facade in Rococo Style was completed by François de Cuvilliés the Younger after a design of his father François de Cuvilliés.

The church was consecrated in 1675. The monastery was closed in 1801, although the church remained the Court Church. In World War II the church was bombed. The west wing of the monastery was destroyed as well as the altarpiece of the foundation. Between 1946 and 1955 the church was restored, the monastery wasn’t completed until 1973. 47 members of the Bavarian Royal Family, including of course Ferdinand Maria and Henriette Adelaide, were interred in the crypt under the altar. A small chapel contains the tombs of King Maximilian II and Queen Marie of Bavaria. The last one who found his resting place in the crypt was Crown Prince Rupprecht of Bavaria in 1955.

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