Among the numerous former women’s monasteries in the Mark Brandenburg, Heiligengrabe is a place worth visiting with its almost complete medieval preservation of the enclosure including the monastery church. It has always been spiritually animated for over 700 years of its existence. That is a very strong continuity and encouragement!
The monastery was founded in 1287 as a Cistercian monastery with 12 nuns by the Ascanian margrave with the support of Bishop Heinrich von Havelberg. It is located in Brandenburg, about halfway between Berlin and Hamburg, in the province of Prignitz. The Holy Sepulcher is mentioned as early as 1312.
When the regional pilgrimage increased around 1500, Heiligengrabe was also an important station, and is now part of the 22km long St. Anne’s pilgrimage, a for visitors to the monastery attractive pilgrimage route which serves spiritual contemplation. In the course of the Reformation, the monastery had to adopt the new Protestant church order in 1548. In 1564 the Kurfürst eventually converted the monastery into an evangelical ‘Fräuleinstift’. In 1740 Friedrich II elevated the monastery to a ‘Damenstift’.