Saturday, May 12, 2007

Things to See

I don't really know what to write about, but if I'm going to keep a blog, should do so regularly. So, what have I been up to? Well, today I went to see the Vatican Mosaic exhibit. It was in the old Ursaline convent in the French Quarter. The mosaics were reproductions of famous works including one by Monet and one by Degas. It was amazing to see those little tiny bits of stone all working together to make a beautiful whole. I'm no art expert but I really enjoyed seeing these mosaics. The "lagniappe" (something extra for free) I got was a chance to see St. Mary's Italian church. After the nuns moved out of the convent (about 200 years ago) the archbishop moved in and a new, bigger chapel was built. After the archbishop moved down the street to the Cathederal, the church was eventually given to the Italian community that occupied the French quarter for many years. Some time ago they quit saying mass in the church so I've never been able to see the inside, and like most churches of its era, it is beautiful. Finally, near the French Quarter is Blessed Francis Seelos parish which worships in St. Vincent de Paul church (the parish was formed via the merger of three parishes). Shortly after the merger, the church burned. I drove by it today and thought I'd take a look at their renovations. They did a nice job. Those old churches just have a feel to them that modern ones don't match. I'm not one who thinks that all the problems of the Catholic church would be solved if they just said mass in Latin again, and turned the priest away from us; however I do love traditional church architecture and decor.

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