Abbey & Brewery
Mariawald refers to a place of pilgrimage, named in honor of Mary in 1475, known here as "Our Lady of the Seven Sorrows."
The year 1480 is considered the year of the real foundation of the monastery, which was built at the time by the Cistercians. For more than three centuries, monks took care of passing pilgrims. The monastery experienced its first vicissitudes in 1795, when the French revolution began to expel them from their monastery. However, the monks managed to preserve the famous Antwerp altar and save it from destruction.
After passing through the hands of several owners, the monastery was finally bought by the Trappist Cistercians of Oelenberg Abbey in 1860, who undertook to rebuild it. Their work was interrupted by the Prussian "Kulturkampf," and the monks were not allowed to enter the monastery from 1875 to 1887. Despite this ban, a small group of monks remained constantly in place.
It was not until 1891 that the abbey church built in the Gothic style was inaugurated. The elevation of the monastery to the rank of abbey took place in 1909 and the monks were finally able to look to the future with a little more peace of mind. Alas, in 1941, the national socialist movement banned and expelled them for the third time in their history.
When the monks returned to the monastery in 1945, they found it heavily damaged. Faithful to themselves, the monks got back to work.
Since then, the abbey of Mariawald, again rectified, has accommodated a community of Trappist monks which still currently number about fifteen.
A brewery was installed around 1862 under the abbey of Father Ephrem, then rebuilt around 1901 under the abbey of Father Heinrich Ahlert.
Beer was produced on site until around 1956, when problems with the supply of raw materials forced the monks to stop production.