Ave Maria

For 15 years kitsch-hunters and miracle-seekers have crossed paths at this Tiergarten mecca for all things Jesus. From bleeding palms to musical Marys, here's where you're sure to find inspiration.

Image for Ave Maria
Photo by Janina Gallert

If you’re looking for Jesus, head to Tiergarten. At Ave Maria, you’ll find not just one, but a startling multitude in all colours and sizes: Jesus standing arms outstretched, Jesus crowned in thorns and of course Jesus on the cross – to various degrees of kitsch and explicitness (bloody stigmata for example).

There are also Jesus-themed coasters, amulets and necklaces, and iconic pictures and postcards including the negative of Secondo Pia’s photo of the Shroud of Turin. “Our mission in Berlin” is how co-owner Ulrike Schuster defines this little sanctuary in Potsdamer Straße.

In 1995 the ex-school teacher, along with her friend, the filmmaker Dieter Funk, set out to create a Catholic oasis in a bastion of Protestantism. Fifteen years later, miracle of miracles, Ave Maria has become the emporium for devotional accessories. The clientele is an assortment of believers, kitsch-hunters, even stageprop- seekers (such as the Deutsche Oper). Whether you’re motivated by earthly desire or divine inspiration, this holy shop is worth the pilgrimage.