01 April - 31 October
Tue 13.00 - 17.00
Wed 13.00 - 17.00
Thu 13.00 - 17.00
Fri 13.00 - 17.00
Sat 13.00 - 17.00
Sun 13.00 - 17.00
01 November - 31 March
Tue 13.00 - 16.00
Wed 13.00 - 16.00
Thu 13.00 - 16.00
Fri 13.00 - 16.00
Sat 13.00 - 16.00
Sun 13.00 - 16.00
The church of St. John the Baptist and St. John the Evangelist is a 15th century gothic church built on the site of a 13th century chapel. Like many churches from that period, it suffered greatly during the Reformation wars (around 1560). The church interior was pillaged and the building used as barracks by the Spanish troops. Reconstruction and re-furnishing by the church council an the community lasted for more than a century.
Though small, the church contains many artobjects. The church community was one of the most prosperous in Malines as the members of the High Council, the highest court in the Netherlands, resided here until the French Revolution.
Beautiful wood carvings and a unique collection of statues and paintings fill the interior. The altar contains the famous triptych painting by P.P. Rubens: “The adoration of the Magi”.
Noteworthy are the 15th century wall paintings in the church tower, uncovered during a major cleaning overhaul. They can be viewed by joining a guided tour and are included in the city tour “three Burgundy generations”. More information to be obtained with the office of tourism of Malines.
The church of St.John is one of 7 historic churches in Malines, promoted by "Torens aan de Dijle vzw", in cooperation with the city of Malines.
This “rich” church contains works from famous artists. Most famous is P. P. Rubens (1577-1640) represented here with his “Adoration of the Magi”(1617). Around 1768-1769 this triptych was mounted in a new portico altar by Pieter Valckx (1734-1785), designed by Theodoor Verhaegen (1701-1759). Behind the side panels is a mechanism which allows the paintings to swivel around so all scenes can be seen and admired.
During a thorough clean-up in 2008, the church council uncovered traces of 15th century wall paintings on the first floor of the church. Experts of the National Heritage Agency discovered that the so-called fragments were in fact two paintings depicting St. Christopher and St. George. “The most impressive find of the last 10 years” according to the experts.
St. George is depicted in his usual pose, fighting the dragon. His horse is spendidly attired and the sleeves of his red brocade cloak are waving in the wind. As described in the legend, St. Christopher is depicted as a hermit. The Child Jesus holds a small globe, with St. Christopher gently holding his foot.From 5th April 2011, these paintings are included in the historic city walk “Three Burgundy generations”. A guided tour leads the visitors to the town hall, the court of Margareta of Austria, the cathedral and now also to the church of St. John to admire these unique paintings from the Middle Ages.
These pews, with fine woodcarving, were for the rich sponsors of the parish.
The richest members of the High Council also commissioned the building of the chapel of the Holy Sacrament in 1548. The chapel is the same size as the original chancel and houses the tomb of the rich sponsor Lambert de Briaerde, chairman of the High Council, and his wife.
The church contains quite a few valuable paintings, including works from Gaspar de Crayer, Abraham Janssens, Ambrosius Francken and works painted in the studio’s of Rubens, Jordaens and other master painters from Antwerp and Malines.