A historic German church in Heidelberg held worship services on Sunday featuring the music of pop artist Taylor Swift. According to Deutsche Welle (DW), The Church of the Holy Spirit, a well-known church in Heidelberg that meets in a 600-year-old building, put on a service titled “Anti-Hero Taylor Swift Church Service” over the weekend in an effort to draw young people into the church. More than 1,200 were in attendance for the service.

“The Church of the Holy Spirit has always been a place of encounter and exchange. That’s why a pop-music religious service fits so perfectly,” Pastor Christof Ellsiepen told the outlet. “With it, we are giving space to the questions and issues that occupy the younger generation.”Per The Christian Post, the pastor also said that the service focused on the seemingly Christian themes in Swifts music to address contested topics including women’s rights, racism, and gender equality.

Parish Pastor Vincenzo Petracca admitted that Swift recently faced backlash from evangelical leaders due to the lyrical content of her music in her latest album.

“Theologically speaking, she points to the justness of God,” Petracca said, adding that Swift’s “faith knows doubt and inner-conflict.”

“For her, faith and action are inseparable,” he said.

The church held two Sunday services featuring Swifts music, which had an audience that predominantly was young and female. A rainbow banner behind the musicians stated that the church welcomes “all sizes, all [colors], all cultures, all sexes, all beliefs, all religions, all ages, all types, all people.”

Although Petracca noted that the church was “built for Gregorian liturgical music and not for Taylor Swift,” he shared he was moved by how the modern-pop service was received.

“I stared into beaming faces and during the song that Taylor wrote for her cancer-stricken mother, many had tears in their eyes,” he said, referring to the song “Soon You’ll Get Better.”

Following the release of Swifts album last month, some Christians claimed that the lyrics mocked God and Christians.

As Crosswalk Headlines previously reported, evangelist Shane Pruitt urged parents to exercise discernment and reconsider allowing their children to listen to Swifts music.

“I’m definitely not the minister or parent that has the ‘no secular music’ stance,” Pruitt, who serves as National Next Gen director for the Southern Baptist Convention’s North American Mission Board and co-author of Calling Out the Called, wrote in a Facebook post. “Also, I fully realize unbelievers are going to act like unbelievers. HOWEVER, there is a difference between being secular and being ANTI-CHRISTIAN.”

Meanwhile, former Boyzone star Shane Lynch recently accused Swift of engaging in satanic rituals in her live shows.

I think when youre looking at a lot of the artists out there, a lot of their stage shows are satanic rituals live in front of 20,000 people without them realizing and recognizing, Lynch told Irelands Sunday World.

Youll see a lot of hoods up and masks on and fire ceremonies. Even down to Taylor Swift one of the biggest artists in the world you watch one of her shows and she has two or three different demonic rituals to do with the pentagrams on the ground, to do with all sorts of stuff on her stage. But to a lot of people its just art and thats how people are seeing it, unfortunately,” Lynch said.

The Church of the Holy Spirit was first built between 1398 and 1515 and draws millions of tourists each year. In Christian history, Heidelberg is known for where the Heidelberg Catechism, a Protestant Calvinist confessional document, was first published in 1563. The Heidelberg Catechism lays the doctrinal groundwork for numerous reformed denominations and influenced those who drafted the Westminster Shorter Catechism, which is foundational to Presbyterianism.

Image Courtesy: GettyImages/Neilson Barnard / Staff

Milton Quintanilla is a freelance writer and content creator. He is a contributing writer for CrosswalkHeadlines and the host of the For Your Soul Podcast, a podcast devoted to sound doctrine and biblical truth. He holds a Masters of Divinity from Alliance Theological Seminary.