The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America


Vision: From the Life of Hildegard von Bingen

Film illuminates life of 12th-century abbess

Vision: From the Life of Hildegard von Bingen is a drama directed by Margarethe von Trotta that focuses on the life of the multitalented abbess and founder of a Benedictine religious community who lived 800 years ago.

She was a teacher and preacher; a composer, poet and artist; an herbalist and pharmacist; and recipient of God-sent visions with insights about the Bible and the natural world. Yet it is only recently, thanks to the rising tide of interest in women's spirituality, that her story has become known.

Barbara Sukowa stars as Hildegard von
Barbara Sukowa stars as Hildegard von Bingen in Vision.

This soul-stirring drama is carried by the immensely gifted actress Barbara Sukowa in the role of von Bingen.

Shot in the medieval cloisters of the German countryside, the film uses music written by von Bingen as part of the score.

Her story illustrates how we might respond to God's communications with us, how we can live a creative life and stay connected to nature, all while honoring the mysteries of life. See this film and let von Bingen's energy and spirit open your heart to fresh possibilities (Zeitgeist Films).


Karen  Vigues

Karen Vigues

Posted at 11:11 am (U.S. Eastern) 6/17/2011

Although not actually canonized, both Pope John Paul II and Benedict have referred to Hildegard as a saint. It is true that she was popularized by the feminist movement, and rightly so -- she was truly a Renaissance woman long before the Renaissance.  But her greatest gift to us, I think, is that although she had many problems with the Church, she remained faithful; she did not leave it.  For Lutherans, she is a symbol of Unity in a time when we need it.

Robert Buntrock

Robert Buntrock

Posted at 4:58 pm (U.S. Eastern) 7/31/2011

As usual, late to the discussion.  I don't know that much about Hildegard von Bingen other than recordings of her music.  Anonymous Four has a great album of her music.  Haunting.

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