The choir system and the choir houses

The choir houses

As mentioned, the members of the sisters’ choir, the brothers’ choir and the widows’ choir lived in special community building designed for this purpose. These choir houses, e.g. the Sisters’ House, were an important and predominant part of a Moravian settlement. This is evident in Christiansfeld, where the choir houses are among the largest and most predominant buildings.
The choir houses were functioning as social and economic units and locations where important spiritual communities were formed. The grouping in choirs was an important factor in the realization of the community thoughts. Community, both spiritually and practically, was paramount.
In the brothers’ house and the sisters’ house, the unmarried younger members lived together. The choir made up the frame for their lives until they would marry. They were sleeping, eating, reading, praying and working together in these houses. The Moravian community saw to it that they received both a school education and vocational training. Thus, the choir houses held several workshops.

Back yard. Photo: Christiansfeld | Museum Kolding
Engraving, 1780. Photo: Christiansfeld Lokalhistorisk Arkiv og Forening

Brothers and Sisters

The original Church of Brothers called itself Unitas Fratrum, which is Latin for the Community of Brothers. When using the titles of brothers and sisters, the intention is to underline that God is the heavenly father of all humans, so that humans are brothers and sisters with a common father and a common brother in Jesus Christ. 
In the Moravian community, there are large community houses and facilities. In the morning and in the evening, there were gatherings in the choir houses where the members would encourage each other with hymns, readings from the Bible and common prayers.
In Christiansfeld and in other Moravian towns the aspiration was to live peacefully together in Christian charity and with ample spiritual life and human community. Here people took care of each other while safeguarding the community.

The Sisters' House. Photo: Christiansfeld | Museum Kolding

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