A Virgin a Day, Haiku My Heart
December 9, 2011
I am sharing A Virgin a Day with Haiku My Heart. Both of these memes were created by my friendRebecca who pens the recuerda mi corazon blog. From December 1st through December 12th, we celebrate Mary with our images, thoughts and stories. December 12th is the Feast Day of Our Lady of Guadalupe. It has been a great exercise in drawing people together and sharing, making conections and new friends. Please have a look by clicking on the highlighted link in this paragraph.
Mary in glory
Sunlight makes her image glow
Great Peace and beauty
San Luis, Colorado is a small quaint town on Colorado highway 159, a little West of Walsenburg, which is located along I-25 South of Denver, and a little South of US Highway 160. It’s on the road that will eventually pass through Taos if you keep on heading South into New Mexico.
We were passing through and saw this monstrous building on a hill. It had a pair of turrets and was laced with gold. Our conversation had Mrs. Spadoman and I wondering what it was. Certainly some sort of religious palace. The design had us convinced it was not anything Catholic.
|Stations of the Cross Shrine San Luis, CO|
Then, as we got closer to the town and saw the informational signs, it turns out to be the epitome of Catholic as it was the Shrine of the Stations of the Cross. Had we noticed the crosses atop the towers, we would have had no doubt. We just missed seeing this small detail.
This monument was high on a hill with no visible road to get to it. We spotted a small sign and a walking path. If you wanted to visit this place, it was a hike up a hill at nearly 8000 feet above sea level.
I was already exhibiting signs of breath shortness and fatigue so I passed on this one. I had no idea that these were the signs that signaled the prelude to my recent heart attack and heart related problems. We did opt to visit the beautiful church in town that sat directly across the road from the Cafe Rosa Mystica Coffee House.
The name of the church was unusual as I have never heard one quite like this before. Most Precious Blood Catholic Church. There was parking close by and we wandered over and found the doors unlocked and the church ready for visitors.
A small church as they go. After all, it was a small town. But very beautiful with a large carved wooden altar that seemed to extend across the entire width of the building. This altar was completely covered with statues with Jesus on the cross as a centerpiece.
The walls were laden with stained glass images of The Blessed Virgin Mary and included Our Lady of Mt. Carmel, St. Rose of Lima and St. Therese, the Little Flower.
I’ve included photographs of the stained glass and also a few of the altar. The outside of the church had a traditional profile, and although this place is located in the Southwestern United States and the name of the town was in Spanish, the design seemed to look more Midwestern than the Mexican adobe style.
We then had to stop in for a cup of coffee. Mrs. S is addicted you know. Gotta have her caffeine fix. Not that she didn’t already have a few jolts of high test java that we made at the motel when we left Taos.
The Rosa Mystica was a unique place. The owner/operator was just pulling turnovers out of an oven, and the aroma mixed with the cinnamon rolls that were cooling on the counter under our noses.
We ordered coffee and wandered around the shop as she had displays and gift items here and there for sale. This is the place where we saw the Our Lady of Guadalupe door hanging for the first time. We knew we had to have one when we realized they existed.
The Rosa Mystica also had a small table set with a statue of Our Lady and candles to light. This was a mainstay in the church where both of us grew up. It was common to my mother’s vernacular to say, “I’ll light a candle for (so-and-so).” to someone that told you about a sick family member or a family that needed prayers.
These are not regularly in churches any longer that I’ve noticed. With my mother in mind, I asked the proprietor about lighting a candle and she told me to go ahead and help myself. I asked about paying for it, as we always made a donation at church in the old days, but she said, “No, there’s no charge.”
We ended up buying half the stock of cinnamon rolls and turnovers, a chore which we would have done anyway, just based on how good they looked and smelled.
That’s our visit to San Luis, Colorado. If you make the trip, let me know. And enjoy one of those turnovers, they wereb divine.