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St. James in Untermettingen

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St. James is the parish church of Untermettingen and belongs to the pastoral care unit of Upper Schlücht Valley. 

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James the Elder was the son of the fisherman, Zebedee, and of Salome as well as the older brother of the disciple John. Due to their zeal, Jesus gave the two brothers the byname of “Boanerges”, meaning “sons of thunder” (Gospel of Mark 3:17). James, along with his brother and Peter, was one of the three favoured disciples who were there during the transfiguration of Jesus and his mortal fears in the garden of Gethsemane. According to tradition, James proclaimed the Gospel after Whitsun in the region surrounding Samaria (present-day Shomron) and in Jerusalem until he was beheaded in the year 43 under King Herod Agrippa I of Judea. James was thus the first martyr among the apostles (Acts of the Apostles 12:1-2).

James is often depicted as a pilgrim or a knight (slayer of the Moors) with a shell. He is considered the patron saint of Spain as well as the patron of warriors, workers, load bearers, pharmacists, chemists, pilgrims, the weather, the flourishing of apples and crops, and as a protector against rheumatism.

The feast day of this church is on 25 July.

The parish in Mettingen was first documented in 1275. Extensive renovation was required after the Thirty Years’ War in the 17th century. The old church’s only remnant was its tower. In 1694, the parish was extended to include Endermettingen, Löhningen, Talhöfe, and Rassbach. On 11 May 1731, the community pastor, Widerkehr, died. His will laid the foundations for the new construction of the church. The new parish church was built in the years 1737-1738. The side altars were built between 1738 and 1741, and the main altar and the pulpit were completed in 1751. The church was first renovated under Pastor Böhler in 1879. The second renovation took place in 1927 under Pastor Büche. Various renovations took place between 1954 and 1963 (including additional storeys to the tower and the adding of exterior plaster). The organ was renovated in 1967. In 1973, the frescos in the old tower were exposed. In 1987, the pastorate in Untermettingen was joined with that of the youth pastor in the deanship of Wutach Valley. From 1999 to 2000, the exterior of the church was renovated as part of the refurbishment of the church square. In the autumn of 2006 until the spring of 2007, an extensive interior renovation of the parish church took place (heating, floor, electrical installations, stage lighting, rear enclosure with glass vestibule, confession room, spiral staircase to the gallery and chair storage area, flexible seating, renovation of the tower chapel, sacristy, wall coating, deworming, and cleaning of the altars). 

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