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Austria: Weihnachten 2006 – Christkindl

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As in 2005, the 2006 Christmas stamp again shows a water-colour painting by the popular former Bishop of Innsbruck, Dr. Reinhold Stecher.

This time Austria Post has chosen the Christkindl Pilgrimage Church in wintry mood as recorded by the hobby painter in his sketchbook – a mood that is ideal for the Christmas period.

The Baroque facade of this church has already been the motif for a stamp, the ATS 2.- definitive from 1958, and was also the background for the 1995 Christmas stamp.

The Pilgrimage Church "Zum Christkind unterm Himmel" (of the Christchild under the Skies) owes its name firstly to the village to which the church originally belonged, and secondly to the legend of the origin of the church. The land on which the Christkindl Pilgrimage Church was built and around which the village of the same name gradually developed, is close to the village of Unterhimmel, mentioned in documents as "Unnderm Himl" (Under the Skies) as early as 1577. 

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