Posts tagged Old Latin School

History of the Wittenberg Latin School



The Old Latin School, known officially as the Wittenberg Gymnasium of 1828, was build in the church yard of St. Mary’s in Wittenberg, where Martin Luther preached over 1,000 sermons. The first two floors of the school were built in 1564. The second two floors were built in 1828, hence the official name “Wittenberg Gymnasium of 1828.” When the school originally was built it served to train young men who would later attend the University of Wittenberg and other universities to become pastors, doctors, lawyers and so forth. In its 450 year history, the building has been used for a variety of purposes and visited by historically famous people. The building even served as a make shift hospital when Napoleon rolled through Wittenberg. A detailed history (in German) can be read below.

Luftbild-Kirchplatz-Wittenberg Marked

Pictured above: St. Mary’s City Church, where Dr. Martin Luther preached. Circled is the Old Latin School. The location right next to the church where Martin Luther preached the Reformation Gospel to the world is a powerful reminder for the purpose of the school. The Old Latin School existed to facilitated the Gospel to the world. Today, the opportunity for the Old Latin School exists again. The renovations to the building are nearly completed. It will be dedicated in May 2015. The building will serve as a preaching station, a conference center where theological education will take place. The Old Latin School provides an opportunity to be a witness to the world regarding Confessional Lutheranism, especially during the 2017 Reformation celebration.

Interested individuals and groups will be able to stay at the Old Latin School. You can learn more by visiting The Old Latin School Website (

To see some of the fascinating history of the Old Latin School, take a look at the book below.

Welcome to the Old Latin School by Bishop Voigt

Bishop Hans-Jörg Voigt of the Independent Evangelical Lutheran Church (SELK) speaks about the Old Latin School recently being renovated and finished for its dedication on 3 May 2015 in Wittenberg Germany. The Old Latin School was built in 1564 across from St. Mary’s ( Stadt- und Pfarrkirche St. Marien zu Wittenberg) where Dr. Martin Luther preached the majority of his sermons during this tenure in Wittenberg. Throughout its life the Old Latin School prepare young men for further study, was seen by Peter the Great, and served as a hospital when Napoleon marched through. More recently, under the communist it served as a printing office and a garment factory until it laid vacant for 40 plus years. Under the International Lutheran Society of Wittenberg (ILSW), a partnership of the Missouri Synod, Concordia Publishing House (CPH), and our partner church the Independent Evangelical Lutheran Church (SELK).

The Old Latin School will serve as a Gospel outreach to the Wittenberg Community, with the establishment of an Independent Evangelical Lutheran Church (SELK) congregation inside the building. It also will serve as a conference center with boarding for classes on Lutheran studies and confessional studies, as well as a place for tour groups from around the world to stay when they visit Luther sites and learn more about the Reformation.

After many years the Old Latin School is almost completely renovated. Below are some photos showing the progress. Additional information can be found at the Wittenberg Project Site.

Screenshot 2015-01-13 09.01.42

Location of the Old Latin School is adjacent to St. Mary’s where Martin Luther preached the Reformation Gospel.


Bishop Voigt and Dr. Collver standing on Jüdenstraße outside of the Old Latin School.


The Plaque on the outside of the Old Latin School.


This is the renovated space inside the Old Latin School where the chapel and SELK congregation will meet on Sunday mornings.


This space is where the bookstore will be located in the Old Latin School. CPH is providing the initial supply of books.


Office space on the upper level in the Old Latin School.


View from the Office Window.


A portion of the Old Latin School Director’s Apartment


The outer door from the inside.


Above the door on the outside.


The Old Latin School from Jüdenstraße.


The Old Latin School at night with St. Mary’s in the background.


The Old Latin school at night from the St. Mary’s Entrance.

— Rev. Albert B. Collver, Ph.D., Director of Church Relations / Regional Operations

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