It had been years. The Sunday Traveler walked into the vast cathedral of Guadalajara and was in awe. The seeming immensity of the church’s interior measures, according to Wikipedia, 77.8 meters x 72.75 meters, which just doesn’t seem right; it seems so much larger than that (ok, I had to convert it via google: 255 feet x 238 feet). I had forgotten how big it is; maybe I just wasn’t appreciative of this kind of thing as a kid when I lived in Guadalajara. I was with very patient cousins who sat and prayed a load of prayers as I walked slowly around the whole church taking photos, stopping to just be in this amazing house of worship, and also say a prayer or two of thanksgiving at being able to have come back again.
The Virtue of Hope
The cathedral was first built in 1541, made of adobe and a thatched roof. The new construction began in 1561 and was completed in 1618. In 1818, an earthquake caused the collapse of the towers and dome, that were replaced, but again damaged from a second earthquake in 1849, repairs completed in 1854. There have been subsequent earthquakes in 1932, 1957, 1979, 1985, 1995, and 2003. There now remains a slight tilt to the north tower, and some structural damage to the dome as reported on the most recent Wikipedia entry. I hadn’t realized there had been so many earthquakes.
The newer looking cupolas are now explained to a question I had as I looked up and wondered about why they weren’t the older look of most of the other churches of Mexico.
As my peregrination around the cathedral continued, my eyes wandered to a stained glass of the Virgin of Guadalupe who I am particularly fond of; I always look for her right off when I go into a church anywhere in the world. The stained glass in this church was imported from France.
The sculptures in the cathedral were impressive as well
The Virtue of Charity. This sculpture especially touched me, as I have seen so many poor women sitting in the streets of Mexico with a baby in their arms begging for money to be able to buy food to feed their child/children.
The Sunday Traveler made one final stop in a little side chapel before leaving
The Cathedral of Guadalajara, a definite must see if you visit this wonderful city, and plan on enough time to wander around inside for a while.