Tuesday, July 26, 2016


I recently visited Santa Fe, NM for the very first time.  I enjoyed everything about it:  the architecture, the music, the food.
I fell in love with the unique style of the religious art.  I loved every moment that I spent in the churches.
Our first stop was to Santurio de Guadalupe.

Next, we walked to San Miguel Church, the oldest church in the United States.

The Bell of San Miguel was cast in 1356 in Spain.

When the Spanish missionaries brought their faith to Santa Fe, they lacked the beautiful art that would be a part of a European church.  These more primitive pieces were made to fill that void.

I was fascinated by the Santos that I saw in churches and museums.  I found the following background information at The Collector's Guide.
Four hundred years ago, the Spanish came to the New World and brought significant changes. One of the most lasting changes was their faith, Catholicism. Santos (painted and carved images of saints) have lived in the homes of Hispanic New Mexican as well as Native American families for hundreds of years. The missionary priests needed "visual aids" to help explain the stories of the saints and the Passion of Christ to the native peoples and used printed images from Spain. At first, some statues were brought from Spain and Mexico but the responsibility for making santos was handled by Franciscan friars and then by local craftspersons and artists, many of whom set up schools or escuelitas. Gradually santeros, the artists who made the images of saints, began to carve and paint the popular saints to supply New Mexican churches, homes, and moradas (village worship space for the Penitente Brotherhood). The santos were made either two dimensionally (retablos), or three dimensionally (bultos).  
These photos were all taken in the Governor's Palace Museum.
Our guide explained that since the people lived such difficult lives, they related to the suffering Christ.  This is why they created such graphic images of the crucifixion.

The beautiful Tin Retablos of the Sacred Heart below was at the Museum of International Folk Art in Santa Fe, NM. It was painted in the 19th century in Mexico City.
Have a blessed day.
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  1. that looked like a neat place to visit! It was interesting learning about some of it's history. I've never been there before.

  2. Oh what a fabulous post! I adore old churches and you showcased this gem beautifully.

  3. Amazing pictures and splendid art work! Church is beautiful and so is the architecture of church.

  4. Really beautiful architecture and art! Thanks for these beautiful photos♥


  5. I have always wanted to go to Santa Fe, Eilis, and after reading your post, I want to go even more!


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