NEW HERRNHUT MORAVIAN CHURCH

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About Us



The name Moravian reflects the origin of this church, ancient Bohemia and Moravia which is presently Czechoslovakia. Developed from the reformation movements championed by John Hus and others, the Moravian Church or "Unitas Fratrum" (United of Brethen) was founded March 1, 1457, in Lilitz, Bohemia. This was sixty years before Martin Luther started his reformation.

After years of growth, persecution forced the Moravians underground. Under the leadership of John Amos Comenius, they remained faithful to God and prayed for Him to preserve a hidden seed. In 1722, fleeing persecution, Moravian families found refuge on the estate of Count Nicholas Louis con Zinzendorf. they built the Herrnhut Community which provided a safe haven for more Moravian refugee.

May 12, 1727 they signed a document dealing with their life and faith and faith called "The Brotherly Agreement". This signaled the renewal of the Moravian Church.

Under the leadership of Count Zinzendorf, the Moravians were encouraged to spread the gospel to the far corners of the world. As a result of Zinzendorf's vision, and with the assistance of a freed slave name Anthony Ulrich, Leonard Dober and David Nichman arrived in St. Thomas on December 13, 1732. Their mission was to bring the Good News of Christ and salvation to the slave population.

After encountering resistance and criticism from the plantation owner and the general community for the work they were attempting, one of the missionaries, Brother Frederick Martin, purchased Estate Posaunberg (renamed New Herrnhut) in 1737, a plantation on the eastern end of the island. This purchase allowed the missionaries to minister directly to the slaves, solidifying the start of Moravian work in the New World. The church building was destroyed by hurricane and the present is more than 200 years old. The interior of the church which is plain and simply designed, is molded after the original Moravian Church in Herrnhut, Germany.

The New Herrnhut congregation's membership is more than 95% black, a characteristic true to its original composition. More than 50% of its membership may be able to trace their roots to the original slave members.

The congregation has been blessed by God with many strengths. These include a strong emphasis in stewardship; time, talent and treasure; strong spirituality, evangelism, support mission and very strong brotherly love. New Herrnhut is renowned for its rich, rich music and musical talents and graciously uses these gifts to bless others as several of its choirs travel annually throughout the continental United States, Europe and the Caribbean conducting benefit concerts to assist other congregations.