visiting churches in Chieti

visiting churches in Chieti

[ Nov.2017 ] We visited not only ancient ruins, but also some churches built more recently in Chieti in Abruzzo in the middle of Italy.

The first one was the Church of Holy Trinity built in 1586 for looking after the pilgrims.

What I was interested in here was the wooden pulpit which was on the wall on the left hand side of the altar.

It is located quite high on the wall.

According to our guide, in the past, the priests performed the mass in Latin and talked showing his back to the audience.

That was because there were the symbols of Christ’s flesh and blood inside the pulpit and the priests could not bear to turn away from them.

And people listened to him and looked at his back, standing.

Our guide said “They introduced the benches in the churches quite recently”.

That reminded me of Orthodox churches which do not have any seats inside even now.

The next church we visited was Church of San Domenico built in the 17th century.

In this church the pulpit is situated on the right hand side of the altar and on one corner there there is a sculpture of a hand which is holding a gun from which a cross is coming out.

Apparently when San Domenico went to South America to propagate Christianity, he stood with the native people against the Spanish invaders, so the Spanish tried to shoot him.

But from the gun a cross appeared instead of a bullet.

This sculpture in this church is showing this miracle.

I suddenly noticed an old woman in the stylish clothing was among us and listening to our guide.

At the end, she told us “You had better visit the Church of Santa Chiara, too”, though we did not have time to go there this time.

The last place we went was the Chieti Cathedral which is in Piazza San Giustino.

This square is the centre of Chieti, surrounded by the Cathedral, the court and the town hall and the rest of the space is occupied by the villas of the local prominent families.

Our interpreter’s sister is an antique conservator and one time she worked in the pink house which is the largest in the square.

The inside was incredibly gorgeous and even a bathroom was huge.

There is a private chapel, too in the house apparently.

Those families do not live here usually, they live somewhere in a small town in the suburbs.

And they have a lot of properties in the town.

In the morning when we were at a bank, I was impressed by the family orientated human relationship based on the trust, but now I had another thought.

In this kind of town, these families who have villas on the square are maybe keeping the upper hand of the society firmly and never allow rebellions against authority, which could feel oppressive.

By the way, they said this square is the most important centre of the town, but it was being used as a car park.

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