Saturday, October 16, 2010

El Santuario de Chimayo

According to wikipedia and my travel guide El Santuario de Chimayó is "the most important Roman Catholic pilgrimage center in the United States." As it was also located along our route between Taos and Santa Fe (on so called "High Road to Taos"), we decided to stop there for a few minutes.

The story says that in 1810 Don Bernardo Abeyta found a "holy" (or "miraculous", if you wish) crucifix that kept reappearing at the site of the current Santuario in Chimayo, even though it was given to the priest at Santa Cruz.

Don Abeyta read it as a sign that the crucifix should remain at the site it was found, and between 1814 and 1816 he built there an adobe chapel and a shrine to house the miraculous cross.

The dirt at the place where the cross appeared was considered to have healing powers, so soon enough thousands of pilgrims began to make their way to the site. And during our honeymoon we made that trip too.

Even if you are not religious, you should still consider visiting the church as it is quite charming and nicely decorated with the 18th and early 19th centuries' paintings and sculptures made by local craftspeople.

El Santuario de Chimayo:

Stations of the Cross outside the sanctuary: