For the reason of distributing the information and knowledge of geographic, I report this journey exclusively. We can found many religions and beliefs in Indonesia, especially the city of Jakarta. However, they live and stay together regarding the peace and harmony. Now, I’ll tell you about one of the vintage churches in Batavia. This is my struggling work to report my journey through photographs in Willemskerk.
First visited, 7 January 2006. Me, Mayahadi, Mala, Rahmat, and Luluk took a walk in Koningsplein Oost. After adventured in KPM, we continued to Willemskerk. Unfortunately, we can’t make a trip document, because the security didn’t allow us to take photographs. We just rest for a moment in the outside of this church disappointedly. Conversely, we took spy shot photographs from the slight.
Second visited, 10 January 2006. Strength of mind: the second touch are best, I and Devon visited this church. I was permitted the security, and he allowed me to take photographs. As usual, I take book “Batavia in 19th Century Photographs” wherever my adventure. I met the priest, Mr. Barudi, and the vintage pianist, Mrs Truly. Amazingly, Mr. Barudi was interested about this book and borrowed it to be scanned, mainly Willemskerk in 1860 photographs. He promised to finish scan photographs in 14 January 2006. Once again, I was “authorized” to take exterior photographs in this church, unofficially.
Third visited, 14 January 2006. Finally, I took some photographs in the interior. There was wedding preparation, but I was allowed to feel the amazing ambiance.
Acknowledgements: For a golden opportunity to know what kind of the inside, I would thanks to Mr. Barudi, the priest of Immanuel Church, and Mrs. Truly, the pianist who has authorize to recite the organ that installed since 1840’s.
Behind The Times Gone By
The Willemskerk is sited in Koningsplein Oost, (Jl. Medan Merdeka Timur), opposite Gambir Railway Station. It was architected by J.H. Horst. The first stone was laid on 24 August 1835. Four years later, 24 August 1839 this church was officially opened by the name of Willemskerk in honour of King Willem I from Holland.
This church has magnificence dome, garnished by pillars of ionic classicist column and widely windows. Also, long-wide upstairs in each sides. J.H. Horst created design that free from all conventional church styles, inspired by ancient Greek and Roma to express the worship of purifying from sin.
The interior is comfort for the prayers. It emphasizes of coolness and freshness because a good aeration designed. It’s provided by high ceiling of arched dome as well.
In the backside of podium, there are tablets that consist the minister of Portuguese, Malay, and Holland speaking congregations.
There are three circular stairs take us to the second floor. In this floor was garnished by corrontian column (more decorative than ionic column).
The vintage dark timber organ was installed since 1840’s and still in use until today. When visited this church, I met Mrs. Truly as “the member of seven pianist” who responsibility to play and manage that organ. She gets the authority key of vintage organ chamber.
From Oud Hollandschekerk to Willemskerk
I want to tell you about the history for more than 170 years ago (I think a century spends long life out). Here it is…
The Portuguese Churh (inside the wall) in Kalibesar Westzydsche was burnt down in 1808. The earlier Reformed Church (Oud Hollandschekerk) was built in the old city of Batavia between Stadhuisplein and Kali Besar Oostzydsche (now the former church is Museum Wayang). It was demolished in 1809. Whereas the old Lutheran Church was sited in northern-end of Kalibesar Oostzydsche, built by Governor General Baron van Imhoff in 1749, as well demolished in 1835.
The members of Lutheran and Reformed congregations in Batavia planed to build a new church in southern region, Weltevreden. The member met in 20 December 1832 discussion about the lack of protestant church in southern environment.
Since 31 October 1948 the name of this church was changed to be Gereja Immanuel (Emmanuel Church).