Augenblicke der Besinnung

Die seligen Jungfrau Maria
ist die Königin des Friedens.
Bei der Geburt ihres Sohnes
verherrlichten die Engel Gott
und wünschten den Menschen guten Willens
Frieden auf Erden.
Bitten wir Maria,
uns leitend voranzugehen.

Papst Franziskus

Collegiate church St. Philip and Jacob



The collegiate church St. Philip and Jacob is one of the churches in Bavaria with the most history. Its origins reach back to the times of the Carolingians. History says that this is the fourth church built at this location. During the most recent archaeological excavations within this church, the ground plan of the Carolingian Basilica was uncovered, built in 876 by King Karlmann. The monastery fell to the Hungarians after 907. The archaeological excavations also uncovered parts of a Basilica from Ottonian times that was probably built around the year 1000. Parts of this Ottonian Basilica were integrated in the Roman Basilica which was erected by the Bavarian Duke  Ludwig "der Kelheimer", together with the re-foundation of the monastery in 1228/31. This Roman Basilica stood its ground until it got too small due to the pilgrimage to Our Lady of Altötting initiated in 1489 at the turn from the 15 the 16th Century. Today’s late-Gothic building was erected between 1499 and 1511 at the same location, paid from funds of the Holy Chapel and the donations of the pilgrims. It was  the last gothic hall church of Southern Germany.  Builder was Jörg Perger, one of the last significant masters of the "Burghausen teaching". The building measures a length (inside) of 48.5 m, a width of 18.5 m. The highest point of the vault is approx. 12 meters above the floor of the church. The distinct outer characteristic of the church is the pair of towers crowned with pointed, copper-covered helmets at a height of 57 m.


As a monastery, pilgrimage and parish church, St. Philip and Jacob with its interior decoration and the artistic design was subject to the transition of the times and changes of the liturgy in the course of half a millennium. Only the gates (North and South gate) carved of oak wood are still from the original interior from the time of erection. The images in plastic and high relief mark the first appearance of the Renaissance sculpture in Old Bavaria (Master Matthäus Krinis from Mühldorf), the larger than life cross on the North wall that is accredited to the Leinberger school of Landshut, as well as several epitaphs on the North and South wall. Several renovations in the course of the centuries, the most recent one an intensive one at the turn from the 18th to 19th Century unfortunately destroyed valuable artefacts from Romanesque, Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque times beyond any hope of restoration, including the valuable gothic glass paintings of the windows, the choir chairs of the first interior, created by the same master that created the gates, and the Roman high grave of the Carolingian King Karlmann (which was never occupied).


The Roman Western piece with the Roman West gate, the organ case that we owe partially to the early Baroque and partially to rococo times and the clock next to the North gate that is about seven meters high and known throughout Bavaria as the "Death of Eding", as the Grim Reaper mows in accordance with the time. The clock is from the past era of the 17th Century. The classic high altar is from around 1800 (painting "Mary, helper of those in need“). Gallery director Joh. Jak. Dorner d. Ä.- baroque figures of St. Sebastian and St. Rupertus), the classic choir chairs of the sculptor Joseph Benedict Kapfer from Trostberg with carved relief medallions with scenes from the history of Altötting, the monastery and the pilgrimage, as well as the two front side altar pairs. Both altar pairs were created in 1793. They show the transition from rococo to classicism. While the first (left St. Johann Nepomuk, right St. Florian) still is fully immersed in rococo in its structure (Josef Doppler, Salzburg) and its statuaries (Christian Jorhan, Joseph Benedikt Kapfer) the second one (left: The Last Meal, right: wedding in Canaan) is true classicism in its structures (Michael Mattheo, Anton Aigenherr) and statuaries (two evangelists each, Roman Anton Boos). The structures of the third side altar pair was made in the style of new renaissance (Michael Kurz) are from 1917, the paintings (left: The Holy Trinity, Jacopo Zanusi; right: a group of male and female Saints, Johann Zick) are from no longer existent rococo altars. 


The cloister and its chapels 

The park and a part of the corbels of the cloister to the South of the church are from the period of the Roman church construction. Around 1420 the cloister was Gothicised. It carries interesting paintings from the 15th Century in the vault segments of the Southern wing and at the North-eastern corner. The four chapels at the cloister are worth seeing. The oldest of them the so-called Tilly-chapel, is located in the South west. The original patrocinium is St. Peter that indicates old age. Today’s gothic chapel is from the early 15th Century and had a predecessor. Possibly this was the former parish church (contrary to the collegiate church). Interesting glass paintings in the South-eastern windows, valuable wall paintings. In the 17th Century, the family Tilly received the chapel as a place of burial. The tomb holds the remains of the great commander Johann Tserclaes von Tilly and further family members in metal sarcophagi. The altar of Hans Pernegger, Salzburg (1643) shows an image of Tilly kneeling underneath a cross. To the North of the Tilly chapel on the first floor, the seven-pains-chapel with several impressive late gothic table paintings. The North wing of the cloister across from the South gate of the church leads to the baroque Sebastiani chapel, 1681 built by Christoforo Domenico Zuccali in place of a destructed gothic predecessor. Altar around 1690 with a plastic group of the "Care of St. Sebastian" from the Munich sculptor Andreas Faistenberger. Under the chapel the tomb of the monastery canons built in 1932.  In the North-eastern corner of the cloister the modern time chapel of rest that owes its name to the picture on the altar showing "Christ at rest". The simple chapel was built in 1959, to mark the place where five Altötting inhabitants were murdered by the SS on April 28th, 1945.



Sunday: 08.30 - noon and 02.30 p.m. - 05.00 p.m.

Advents and fasting period: before and during every evening mass



480 seats