Sunday, July 28, 2013

Altarpiece at the El Paular Monastery (The Life of Jesus Christ)

Earlier this week we visited the Monasterio de Santa María de El Paular, a functioning 14th-century Benedictine monastery in the town of Rascafría, about 90 minutes north of Madrid at the base of the Sierra de Guadarrama mountains.

Guadarama mountains near Rascafría:

The monastery  where eight monks currently reside:

Beverly with Elder Joe and Sister Jean Riggs, who are employment missionaries in Madrid (Joe was a missionary with Scott in the Andes Mission nearly 50 years ago):

Father Martin, a Benedictine monk and our charming guide, with Beverly:

One of the highlights of the monastery was the altarpiece in the main chapel. It consisted of high-relief sculptures (of colored alabaster) that depicted the birth and death of Jesus:

Here are closeup photos of 14 of the 16 panels.

The angel Gabriel appears to Mary and announces that she will be the mother of Jesus:

Mary visits her cousin Elizabeth:

The birth of Elizabeth's son John, known as John the Baptist:

The birth of Jesus:

The Three Kings visit the baby Jesus:

 Jesus is presented to the high priest:

John baptizes Jesus. (Note: The altarpiece depicts the Catholic manner of baptism---by sprinkling---rather than by immersion.):

The Last Supper:

The Romans take Jesus into custody: 

Jesus carries the cross to Calgary:

Jesus is crucified:

Jesus is taken down from the cross:

Jesus is resurrected and comes forth from the tomb:

The resurrection of the dead at the time of Christ's resurrection:

We were glad the Riggs invited us to go on an excursion with them and that we visited this amazing monastery.