On September 8, 1319, a certificate was drawn up in Groningen. It is a contract between the commander (= abbot in the Order of St. John) in Steinfurt and the Frisian people coming from St. John (= St. John monasteries). In this so-called "Groningen settlement", the Johannite monasteries of the order province of Frisia secured certain rights. This made them largely independent of their leadership in Steinfurt. The document from 1319 lists a total of 20 Frisian monasteries - from Warffum / Province of Groningen to Langewisch in the Butjadinger lands. For most of those coming to St. John it is the first documented mention of it.
The St. John's monasteries in this area were of great importance for the development of agriculture, hydraulic engineering and culture in this region. On the East Frisian peninsula, the Order of St. John was represented by most of the monasteries. In autumn 2019 this led to the idea of the Ihlow convent association to present the history and the present of these former Frisian St. John's monasteries in a traveling exhibition and to remind people of their importance for the region.
Why is the monastery association involved in this project - after all, there was a Cistercian monastery in Ihlow in the Middle Ages? Because our monastery association has been organizing a “Working Group of East Frisian Monastery Sites” since 2013, which organizes lectures and monastery tours (up to the province of Groningen!) every year, and recognizes the “Silent Rooms Ihlow” as a symbol of the importance of the medieval cultural landscape of the monasteries in the region as a whole.
The number of participating locations of this German-Dutch project: (see map above; bold highlighted: Province of Groningen)
- Abbingwehr, Boekzetel, Bokelesch, Bredehorn, Burlage,
- Dünebroek, Goldhoorn, Heiselhusen, Jemgum,
- Langholt, Muhde, Oosterwijtwerd, Warffum, Wijtwerd
This projekt is unique for the commemorative culture of the former monastery landscape in northwestern Europe.
Because of its importance, the project is funded by the Ems Dollart Region, and by the “Johanniter-Subkommende Oldenburg” and the “Subkommende Ostfriesland-Wilhelmshaven”. The traveling exhibition was opened on September 12 for the Jemgum and Dünebroek locations and can be seen at the other locations for about 4 weeks until autumn 2022.
|Location||Opening on||Ends at|
|Warffum||Thu, 21.04.2022||Sun, 15.05.2022|
|Burlage||Sat, 21.05.2022||Sun, 19.06.2022|
Goldhoorn / Kirche Finsterwolde
|Sat, 25.06.2022||Sun, 24.07.2022|
|Bredehorn||Sat, 30.07.2022||Sun, 28.08.2022|
|Oosterwijtwerd / Kirche Osterwijtwerd||Sat, 03.09.2022||Sun, 02.10.2022|
|Ihlow / Klosterstätte||Sat, 08.10.2022||Sun, 06.11/13.11.2022|