Wildenwart - Christkönigskirche
Several hundred yards north of the centre of the village of Wildenwart is a church dedicated to Christ the King.
Since 1862 the chapel in Schloss Wildenwart had been used for public worship. By 1923 it had become too small to serve the growing community, and so an association was formed to plan a separate church. Members of the Bavarian nobility supported the project as a memorial to Queen Mary IV and III and her husband King Ludwig III of Bavaria, while Cardinal Michael von Faulhaber established a diocesan collection. 1
The church was designed by Georg Berlinger. 2 The foundation stone was lain on September 17, 1933, and the church was dedicated by Cardinal Faulhaber on July 15, 1934.
Above the high-altar is Maximilian Freiherr von Schellerer's painting of Christ the King (1934). 3 Kneeling in the foreground are Queen Mary and King Ludwig (dressed as Grand Master of the Order of St. George). To the left of Queen Mary can be seen Schloss Wildenwart; to the right of King Ludwig can be seen the Christkönigskirche.
In the Friedhof (cemetery) at the foot of the hill on which the church stands is the tomb of Princess Helmtrud, daughter of Queen Mary IV and III. It is surmounted by a decorative piece of wrought iron, at the centre of which is space for an icon, below which is a white oval metal plate with an inscription:
1 Max Oppel, Ludwig III, König von Bayern: Skizzen aus seiner Lebensgescichte (Prien: Verkehrsverband Chiemsee, 1995), 137.
2 Georg Berlinger was born in 1882 and died in 1946. He designed a number of churches as well as other ecclesiastical buildings. Oppel wrongly refers to him as "Fritz Berlinger".
3 Maximilian Freiherr von Schellerer was born in Bamberg in 1892; he died in 1940. He studied under the famous Munich animal painter, Heinrich von Zügel.
Image 1 (Exterior): © Noel S. McFerran 2003.
Image 2 (High altar): © Noel S. McFerran 2003.
Image 3 (Painting above high altar): © Noel S. McFerran 2003.
Image 4 (Tomb of Princess Helmtrud): © Noel S. McFerran 2003.