Churches and the Abbey
The Van Gogh Church and the Sexton’s House are located on the Vincent van Gogh Square in Zundert. In this church the father of Vincent van Gogh was the Resident Minister. This Dutch Reformed Church was built in the beginning of the 19th century, it features a variety of artefacts. In the graveyard next to the church lies the grave of Vincent van Gogh. The older brother of the famous artist was stillborn exactly a year before him in 1852.
The former Sexton’s House is also dated from the time of Vincent van Gogh. His father Theodorus van Gogh, bought the small house next to the church in 1863 and had it altered into a Sexton’s House. Young Vincent must have been closely involved in the purchase, renovation and occupation of it. The house was restored using grants from the province of North Brabant. The garden has been brought back the style of those days. The former Sexton’s House is now “The Van GoghGallery”. In the modern style guest studio, which is situated adjacent to it, artists can work and live during a period of at least a month in the atmosphere of Van Gogh.
The St Trudo Church and the St Trudo Presbytery, 7 and 9 Molenstraat, Zundert. You can admire artefacts from the 17th century in the church. There are marble baroque altar decorations, statues of alabaster, paintings and carved oak confessional boxes. The Presbytery next door is a house with Empire shutters from the end of the 18th century. It also has a framed entrance and painted wallpaper dated 1777.
These churches can be visited with a guide.
Other churches in the borough are the St. Bavo Church in Rijsbergen, a building which is worth seeing, with wall paintings, stained glass windows and the tombstone of cardinal Frankenberg. The Holy Cornelis Church in Achtmaal, the Holy Willebrord Church in Klein Zundert and Our Holy Lady of Everlasting Assistance in Wernhout.
The Abbey of Mary Sanctuary
The Abbey of Mary Sanctuary was founded in 1900 in the marsh fields “De Moeren” between Zundert and Rucphen. The abbey is situated in a quiet country area, surrounded by forests and areas of nature. A contemplative community of monks live in the abbey. Their lives are dedicated to silence, reflection and prayer. The community is part of the Cistercian Order of Strict Observation (OSCO) also known as Trappists. The monks earn their living from manual work. For example they have a guesthouse with the possibility for reflection and meditation. They also have a small brewery and an abbey shop. Address: 38 Rucphenseweg.
You will find an abbey shop in the gateway on the left side of the main entrance of the Abbey.
In the abbey shop you can buy various abbey products from the Netherlands, Belgium, France and Germany. You will also find the Zundert Trappist beer, foodstuff, books, CDs and various religious articles. The Abbey is a place for peace and reflection. The monks wish to respect silence and they ask the visitor only to enter the area with respect for this silence.
Opening hours of the abbey shop visit: http://www.abdijmariatoevlucht.nl