The ABC Tour

Mike has always joked that he is on the ABC Tour. That stands for, Another Blessed Cathedral. In many ways he is right. We have visited the main cathedral or church in every city we have traveled too. However, there are reasons other than my just wanting to light candles.

Many of the cathedrals or church’s we have entered have been around for hundreds of years, some going back as far as the 13th Century. Many of these places of worship were sponsored by the wealthiest patrons of their time so no expense was spared in the decoration or the carvings that can be found inside their walls. These are not modern buildings with stucco drywalls and simple stained glass windows or paint by number paintings. Many of the places we have toured have sculptures and deities leaping from the walls, chiseled in their glory to make them feel like they are alive; they have medieval stained glass windows that tell a story or gives praise to the people who helped to protect the church; they are filled with wooden ceilings and golden altars and even in some cases scientific advancements.

 

This stained glass window in the Church of Perth, Scotland shows the legendary Black Watch regiment,  Scotland's elite military regiment whose history stretches back almost three centuries.   © Photo by Florence Ricchiazzi Lince

This stained glass window in the Church of Perth, Scotland shows the legendary Black Watch regiment, Scotland’s elite military group whose history stretches back almost three centuries. © Photo by Florence Ricchiazzi Lince

In other words many of the churches and Cathedrals we have entered are really works of art unto themselves and they should be photographed and visited. I prefer visiting a city’s main Cathedral sometimes more than its main museum.

 

This is the ceiling in the Church of St. Francis in Sibenik, Croatia which dates back to the 13th Century.  The ceiling is made of wood and the paintings date from 1674.  © Photo by Florence Ricchiazzi Lince

This is the ceiling in the Church of St. Francis in Sibenik, Croatia which dates back to the 13th Century. The ceiling is made of wood and the paintings date from 1674. © Photo by Florence Ricchiazzi Lince

Mike was raised Protestant, I was raised Roman Catholic. Mike wasn’t overly what you would call religious when we met so when I first told him that I wanted to visit the main Cathedral or Church in every city we visited he thought it was some sort of pilgrimage thing or something. Then he learned that I didn’t care if the church was Roman Catholic, Protestant, Episcopalian or a Mosque; church’s and religious houses of worship are really testaments to great art.

This mosque is located in Mostar, Bosnia-Herzegovina.  It was the first time either of us had entered a Mosque and it was beautiful in its décor and simplicity.  © Photo by Florence Ricchiazzi Lince

This mosque is located in Mostar, Bosnia-Herzegovina. It was the first time either of us had entered a Mosque and it was beautiful in its décor and simplicity. © Photo by Florence Ricchiazzi Lince

 

Sometimes the artwork begins well before you enter the church.  This is one of the doors that enter The Vatican in Rome, Italy.  © Photo by Florence Ricchiazzi Lince

Sometimes the artwork begins well before you enter the church. This is one of the doors that enter The Vatican in Rome, Italy. © Photo by Florence Ricchiazzi Lince

 

The main altar in the Cathedral in Taxco, Mexico is covered in gold leaf and sculptures.  © Photo by Florence Ricchiazzi Lince

The main altar in the Cathedral in Taxco, Mexico is covered in gold leaf and sculptures. © Photo by Florence Ricchiazzi Lince

 

At famous Rosslyn Chapel, Edinburgh, Scotland (of Da Vinci Code fame) the sculptures are part of the façade and leap out at you as you get close to the entrance of the chapel.   © Photo by Florence Ricchiazzi Lince

At famous Rosslyn Chapel, Edinburgh, Scotland (of Da Vinci Code fame) the sculptures are part of the façade and leap out at you as you get close to the entrance of the chapel. © Photo by Florence Ricchiazzi Lince

 

Gold leaf fills this church, not just the main altar, in Monreale, Sicily.   © Photo by Florence Ricchiazzi Lince

Gold leaf fills this church, not just the main altar, in Monreale, Sicily. © Photo by Florence Ricchiazzi Lince

 

Sometimes the main church's are used for ceremonies.  Changing of the guard happens in the Cathedral in Buenos Aires, Argentina because the remains of Argentina's most loved general resides here; General José de San Martín.  © Photo by Florence Ricchiazzi Lince

Sometimes the main church’s are used for ceremonies. Changing of the guard happens in the Cathedral in Buenos Aires, Argentina because the remains of Argentina’s most loved general resides here; General José de San Martín. © Photo by Florence Ricchiazzi Lince

 

After traveling for over three years and entering well over 100 church’s or Cathedrals he now has come to enjoy exploring them as much as I. In fact when we get to a new city one of the first places he pinpoints on a map is the nearest church and/or Cathedral. Maybe he can be a convert after all…

 

Florence Lince

http://www.about.me/florencelince

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9 comments

  1. Reblogged this on Applecore and commented:
    Since this post is partly about me, I thought I should share it with you. Florence and I are on the same tour of the world, and it is good to have more than one perspective. For the past six months, Florence has written of the same subject matter as I have. As your would expect, you will gain a different perspective by reading her version. Enjoy! – Mike

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  2. I have been on a piecemeal “ABC tour for about a half century. Most of my favorites are in Spain, France and Italy. Even small parish churches in out-of- the-way towns can present great surprises in art and history. the other great thing about churches is that in some European cities they are the only place where you can sit in peace and quiet for a few minutes.

    Enjoy your tour. Have a great time.

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    1. Jay if you ever write about your experiences I would be interested in reading about them. Perhaps we have been to some of the same places.

      We are headed to Seville, Granada and Cordoba next month and I expect a church or two to be on our itinerary of places to visit.

      Thanks for reading, and connecting.

      Florence

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  3. It’s wonderful that you’ve opened Mike’s mind and heart to the beauty of churches Florence. Oh, and I’m still hoping that you’ll have the same impact with vegan food one of these days. Hope all is well chica – happy Easter!

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    1. Hey Girlfriend!

      We have an awesome surprise for you coming in 2015. We will be heading back to the US and starting a two year RV Whistle Stop tour of the US and Canada heading to National Parks and to as many Vegan Restaurants as we can find in every state in the Union. Mike’s idea! So you have had more of an impact on him than you think you did.

      We will be sending you info on our plans when we get them more cemented up. We are in the planning stages and its a lot of work planning out our adventures. We think we will be in an RV for 2 years in order to see and do it all. That’s a lot of Vegan or Vegetarian Restaurants.

      Have an awesome Easter as well and give our best to Paul.

      Florence

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      1. Wow! That is some breaking news… and such happy news at that! When you guys get back here, I should introduce you to my aunt and uncle. They have spent years vacationing by RV and have it down to a science! They have done so many clever things to their RV to make it truly livable; I think you guys would really enjoy meeting them, and talking details! 😉

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      2. We would love to take you up on the offer to chat with your aunt and uncle. The more knowledge Mike and I can get the more successful our tour will be. We are really looking forward to meeting up with as many bloggers from the bloggersphere as we can!

        Cheers,

        Florence

        Best,

        Florence

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  4. I’m with you Florence– I’d rather visit the local churches or places of worship, when I travel, than most other sites! I don’t really practice any religion, but I find these places so spiritual, so impressive (for all of the reasons you state) and so humbling… beautiful… Great post!

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