Tuesday, March 5, 2019

Building site for symbolic Euro

Klaus Lederer
Michael Müller, Klaus Lederer

It was with great pleasure that the decision of the Berlin Senate to grant the building site on Petriplatz hereditary leasehold to the House of One - Bet- und Lehrhaus Berlin Foundation on this Tuesday was accepted. "For all of us who have been working on the project for years, this is a further important step towards the realization of the House of One," said Rabbi Andreas Nachama, Chairman of the Board of Trustees. "With gratitude and joy we take note of the wonderful news, especially the commitment of the Governing Mayor to this groundbreaking peace project.

Imam Kadir Sanci, with Nachama on the Foundation's Executive Committee, adds: "Berlin is growing into the capital of tolerance. I see this decision as a renewed confirmation that the city is the right home for our project of understanding, not only between religions but also with secular society". 


House of One: A global role model 


Senator of Culture Klaus Lederer, who supported the House of One from the beginning of his term of office, said after the decision: "With this decision the Senate appreciates the great importance of the House of One. It will stand as a worldwide role model for tolerance, openness, successful dialogue and constructive coexistence of religions in a plural city". Already today, the House of One is carrying out important communication work in Berlin.

On Petriplatz in Berlin Mitte, three Berlin communities - one Jewish, one Christian and one Muslim - are planning a sacred building with a synagogue, a church and a mosque under one roof as well as a central space for meeting all other religious and non-religious people. In Berlin, where Lessing's and Moses Mendelssohn's friendship once turned religious emancipation and enlightenment into a European project, where the power of words and the power of non-violent resistance in 1989 made the "Iron Curtain" fall, the House of One will be a place where the coexistence of religions can be lived peacefully, in great openness and in appreciation of diversity.

The laying of the foundation stone is planned for 14 April 2020, the anniversary of the world premiere of Lessing's "Nathan the Wise". In January, the temporary pavilion of the House of One on Petriplatz was dismantled. In the coming weeks, the archaeologists will be investigating a number of undeveloped spots on the site before starting preparations for the construction, which will take place on the foundations of the historic Petri Church.

According to current plans, the construction costs amount to 43.5 million euros. In November last year, the federal government approved 10 million euros for this purpose, and the Berlin Senate agreed to allocate the same amount in February of this year. People from all over the world have so far donated 9.2 million euros, many of them by buying a symbolic stone worth 10 euros.