Founding and Carrying

The celebration of the first Act of Consecration of Man (the Christian Community Mass) constituted the birth of The Christian Community on the 16th September 1922 in Dornach, Switzerland. It was guided into being through the immeasurable and selfless help of Dr. Rudolf Steiner (1861-1925), whose science of the spirit, Anthroposophy, has become a central source of renewal in the most varied fields of life.  Waldorf Education, Eurythmy, Bio-dynamic Agriculture, The Camphill Movement for the care of people with special needs, Anthroposophical Medicine, etc. all bear witness to this.

Dr Steiner’s assistance came in response to earnest questions from a group of German Lutheran theologians, including the eminent Berlin minister Dr. Friedrich Rittelmeyer, seeking appropriate Christian forms and content for the religious life of our time.

The Christian Community is not the ‘anthroposophists’ church’, although it is the only Christian church whose priests recognize the wisdom of Anthroposophy as a decisive aid for the broadening and renewal of the religious life in our time.

The Christian Community is an international movement with approximately 350 congregations in 27 countries. Each congregation is financially independent and is carried by voluntary contributions and donations from members and friends. Supporting the work of the congregations on an international level is The Foundation of the Christian Community made up of priests and lay-people.  The priesthood has at its centre a group called the Circle of Seven who stand responsible for all the priestly work world-wide. At the centre of this Circle of Seven stands the Erzoberlenker, currently Rev. Vicke von Behr.  The Circle of Seven and The Foundation have their offices and rooms in Berlin, Germany.

The work in Great Britain and Ireland began with Rev. Alfred Heidenreich’s founding of the first congregation in London in 1929.  Since then the work has grown to 14 congregations spread around the British Isles.


From its beginning The Christian Community has been an independent sacramental community which views Christianity as a universal healing stream for all mankind, not to be fettered with one-sided and inflexible teachings or behavioural codes. It is by no means exclusive and welcomes all who are looking for an authentic religious life that combines spiritual substance and integrity with full individual freedom. Members are encouraged to form independent judgements and understanding of their own.

The seven sacraments and the gospels are understood to be spirit-inspired works that provide, together with the wisdom of Anthroposophy, the ‘bedrock’ of a modern Christian theology. There is no dogma. Priests and members pursue their own independent research out of a love and interest for the world and for all spheres of spiritual, artistic and scientific endeavour in human life. As a result, the ‘teachings’ in The Christian Community are rich, diverse and evolving.

There is room in this modern Christian theology to incorporate such ideas as reincarnation and karma, a truly cosmic conception of the Christ, and a broadened understanding of the working of the beings and life of the spirit worlds that weave behind the manifestations of the sense world. There is, for instance, the constant striving to understand and work together with the beings of the angelic realms and the souls of the Dead.

The Sacraments

In The Christian Community we live with the seven sacraments:

  • Baptism as a child into Earth community.
  • Confirmation at puberty of the step from childhood to youth and the entry into The Act of Consecration of Man.
  • The Act of Consecration of Man – consecration of the becoming human being.
  • Sacramental Consultation towards a free and responsible carrying of individual destiny.
  • Last Anointing of the earthly body before the journey through the funeral rituals and the accompanying of the soul across the threshold.
  • Ordination into priesthood. Both men and women can become priests.
  • Marriage into community of life.

In addition to the seven sacraments there is a unique Sunday service for children between 7 and 14 years of age – a first awakening towards a personal religious life.

The Act of Consecration of Man

The Christian Community celebrates the Eucharist, the Sacrament of bread and wine, in a renewed form.  This renewal of the centre of all Christian sacramental life, the Mass, is called The Act of Consecration of Man.  It consists of four steps that reveal in sense-perceptible form what happens as a supersensible reality in the spirit at the threshold of the altar:

  • Gospel reading – hearing the divine word from the realm of the angels.
  • Offering – responding with an offering of our best soul forces borne by the water, wine and incense.
  • Transsubstantiation – the transformation of what has been offered through the deed of Christ.
  • Communion – receiving what is transformed as the healing power of the resurrection into our lives.

This inner structure is the archetypal path of all human striving for wholeness. The unusual name, The Act of Consecration of Man, implies the reconnecting of the human being with his spirit origin, which at the same time is his future.  Christ, who himself became human, is the leaven that raises us to our true humanity.  He gives his healing, transforming power to all who recognize Him, who seek Him, and who follow Him in freedom. The abundant, healing substance produced at the altar becomes available not only to those present but also to the souls of the Dead, and is taken up by the Community Angel where it is needed in the world.

Changing altar colours, vestments and prayers express the mood and character of the evolutionary path of the Christian Festivals through the year.

Visitors are always welcome. Your own experience will convey more than any description.