The Role of the German Community in the City’s History
The beginnings of the German community in Brașov date back to the 12th century when the German colonists settled in the valley at the feet of the Tâmpa mountain. In the Middle Ages, the town was dynamic, and its prosperity was based on crafts and commerce. From the 16th century, Brașov grew and extended massively, due to the introduction of the ecclesiastical reform. Its welfare system was improved, and local schools were reorganized in such a manner that would turn humanistic values into the new educational ideals of society. The results of the reform were quickly noticeable, forming the unique character of the city, which persists to this day.
Another important hallmark of the town, – its cosmopolitanism – generated by the fact that Brașov was always a transit area for traders and travelling craftsmen, had also developed rapidly. This element turned Brașov into a metropolis being equally represented by its German, Hungarian and Romanian communities.
In those times, the German community developed anew and invested share of gains from industrial activities into constructing a new and complex infrastructure of schools and medical institutions. As a consequence of the dramatic history of the 20th century, we note the massive emigration of the members of the German community. Around the events of the 1989 revolution, the Saxon population of Brașov decreased considerably.
Today, the community of the Black Church manages to exert its influence outside its walls due to the extraordinary richness of its traditions. Its traditional concerts attract an audience from all over the world. Passionate researchers await visitors with many newly discovered pieces of information regarding the history and heritage of the church. The educational offers of the community are grasped by hundreds of children and young people. Last but not least, the Social Center and the Home for the Elderly belonging to the parish have become important places of refuge for many needy people in the city.