Churches and Shrines in New Mexico


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North America » United States » New Mexico
September 6th 2008
Published: September 18th 2008
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New Mexico is a spiritual place. The high altitude & dry air combine to give the sunlight an extra something that has long attracted artists and mystics.

From the humble moradas of Los Penetentes to the elaborate churches of Santa Fe New Mexico hosts many of the most beautiful churches in North America. I have enjoyed photographing some of them:

At the Loretto Chapel in Santa Fe, we view the Mysterous Staircase. The story goes that when the chapel was built there was no access to the choir loft. The chapel was too small for a regular stairway.
The Sisters made a novena to St. Joseph, patron saint of carpenters. On the 9th & final day a man appeared with a donkey & toolbox asking for work. Months later the staircase was completed and the man who built it disappeared, with neither thanks nor pay.

The staircase continues to amaze engineers to this day due to it's being built without center or side supports. It makes 2 full 360 degree turns.

In the llano country of eastern New Mexico, a beautiful, immense, country, sculpted by wind and water we see many beautiful old churches. Especially moving are the simple shrines in the lonely countryside built at a time when the nearest church would be a day or mores travel on horseback.

Thousands of pilgrims walk to the Church of Chimayo during Easter week and many thousands more thru the year. Known as the "Lourdes of the West", miraculous cures are attributed to the Holy Earth in the Sanctuary. It is a place of inspiration.


Additional photos below
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The Miraculus StaircaseThe Miraculus Staircase
The Miraculus Staircase

built by an angel?
San Miguel Mission in Santa FeSan Miguel Mission in Santa Fe
San Miguel Mission in Santa Fe

Built in the early 1600's it is said to be the oldest church in the US
Shrine to the Holy VirginShrine to the Holy Virgin
Shrine to the Holy Virgin

near El Cerro de Corazon in the llano country
Shrine near CorazonShrine near Corazon
Shrine near Corazon

This shrine is in a lonely, but beautiful place. We both found it to be a good place to pray.
San Estaban del Rey Church in AcomaSan Estaban del Rey Church in Acoma
San Estaban del Rey Church in Acoma

Work began on this church in 1630. The Acoma people incorporated elements of their traditional religion in it's construction. It survived the Pueblo revolt
Church at BuyerosChurch at Buyeros
Church at Buyeros

This beautiful church dating from the 1890's stands in lonly location on the llano of eastern New Mexico
Church at Las TrampasChurch at Las Trampas
Church at Las Trampas

On the "High Road to Taos"
Detail on the doorDetail on the door
Detail on the door

at Las Trampas
Mosaic at ChimayoMosaic at Chimayo
Mosaic at Chimayo

at one of the recent additions


20th October 2010
Church in Buyeros

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