The Pilgrimage Church in Glosberg
Glosberg, the place of pilgrimage in the western Franconian Forest, is located on the bottom of the Rauscherberg. The origin of the traditional pilgrimage cannot be determined. However, a bill from the year 1530 refers the pilgrimages to Glosberg. At that time, a late gothic statue of the Mother of God was found in the forests. According to the legend, the statue was found in the forests, tied to a tree. After having fixed an offertory box to it, this very tree became a destination for many pilgrims. Then, in 1727, a mysterious incident made pilgrimages flourish again: the statue cried bloody tears. According to a report in the parish archives the Madonna cried three times in the time between the 28th of March and the 11th of April 1727. Consequently, a commission investigated the miracle. However, the miracle of Glosberg was never really acknowledged, as the giving of evidence proved to be not well-grounded.
When the crying Madonna had made the church a popular place of pilgrimage, a new and bigger house of prayer was built from 1730 to 1736. The master builder of the new church is unknown. Nonetheless, it is proved that, amongst others, Johann Georg Neißel, Lorenz Stöcklein, Lorenz Hühnlein, Joseph Gruber, Johann Andreas Tribl, Johann Amb and even Balthasar Neumann were involved. On the 9th of August in 1744, the church was grandly dedicated by the auxiliary bishop Hahn.
From 1730 to 1810, members of the Franciscan Order held the ministration and moved into a small Franciscan hospice, today’s parsonage.
No earlier than in 1810, Glosberg became a parish church. The last restoration took place from 1979 to 1981 and in its course the facade was newly embellished.
Moreover, the ceiling frescoes as well as the floors were renewed and the seating reworked. When the floor was laid bare, the restorers found a well-maintained stone rosette, which was subsequently expanded and used as a fundament for the altar.
Glosberg - Outside the Parish Church
The church building is surrounded by an old graveyard wall made of sandstone with simple northern, southern and western gates.
The nine stairs are overarched by a gate with a segmental arch with pilaster strips on the sides. It was built by Johann Heinrich Wagenholz in 1755.
The plastic coat of arms of prince bishop Konrad von Stadion und Thannhausen represent the capstone.
In front of the gate, two life-sized statues of Heinrich II and his wife Kunigunde show that Glosberg belongs to the diocese of Bamberg. A wrought-iron door completes the gate.
The depiction of a Madonna above the church gate with the inscription “illos tuos misericordes ocules ad nos converte” (look on us with your merciful eyes) alludes to the legend and origin of the pilgrimages.
On the south side of the church, a sundial from 1841 can be found. Beneath the church are the parsonage and the parish hall, which provides enough space for the parish and the pilgrims.
The chapel is in the forest on top of the Raucherberg
The chapel and its history
In 1844, a young boy saw the Mother of God on the Rauscherberg, where many years before the statue was found. She told him to build a chapel in that spot. However, the chapel wasn't findished until 1884. Starting at the village, a steep and stony forest track leads to the chapel. On the way, the seven pains of Maria are depicted on seven stone sculptures by Tobias Weiß from Nurnberg. Every year, from May to October, on the 13th day of the month or the following Sunday, the people pilgrimage up the Rauscherberg.