St. Pauls Cathedral
The other day we went over to Mdina. It feels like a world away, but I noticed on the way home that the GPS says it’s 18 minutes from our house. I’ve seen lots of videos about this sacred place before we moved here, but going there in person was beyond my expectations. Because I took so many photos and videos and there is so much to cover, I’ve decided to do the blogs on Mdina in increments. Today’s blog will cover St. Pauls Cathedral. There is enough there to stand alone.
A brief history on Mdina from Wikipedia:
Mdina (Maltese: L-Imdina [lɪmˈdɪnɐ]; Phoenician: 𐤌𐤋𐤈, Maleṭ, Ancient Greek: Μελίττη Melíttē, Arabic: مدينة Madinah, Italian: Medina), also known by its titles Città Vecchia or Città Notabile, is a fortified city in the Northern Region of Malta which served as the island’s capital from antiquity to the medieval period. The city is still confined within its walls, and has a population of just under 300, but it is contiguous with the town of Rabat, which takes its name from the Arabic word for suburb, and has a population of over 11,000 (as of March 2014).
Mdina remained the centre of the Maltese nobility and religious authorities (and property continues to largely be passed down from families and from generation to generation), but it never regained its pre-1530 importance, giving rise to the popular nickname the “Silent City” by both locals and visitors. Mdina is on the tentative list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites, and it is now one of the main tourist attractions in Malta.
Before I show the video and then break down single photos, I will show the outside.
The first picture is the building on the side of the Cathedral that is part of it all, but is under construction and I am not aware of its function. The building on the right is the place you purchase tickets as it is the St. Paul The Apostle Museum.
The photo below is the Cathedral of St. Paul itself.
To go into St. Pauls, you must first purchase a ticket. It is the museum of the Cathedral as well as the ticket center.Inside this was on the wall. I will show the whole picture and then a close up of a part I found really insightful that would be up there.
From there I will now show you some of the detail of this amazing place. There is a casket with a priest and the sculpture of him above the casket. The casket was made of marble. The details are unbelievable. Held up by these carved owls on both sides, you can see that there is not a single thing inside this place that is less than creative masterpieces.
Even the floors were covered with large stone slabs with stories and artwork telling so much of history. It was not in English, but in Latin so I did not understand the words, but the photos are pretty detailed. there were a lot of skeletons and skull and cross bones on several of the squares.
The above painting of Jesus comes from the ticket building. Paintings such as this of Mary are located in the Cathedral itself. As well, the second stained glass of Jesus is from inside the church itself.
This is one of the gates and above it leads to the organ pipes. Here is what it looks like as the full image:
Before I show you the ceiling photo and then offer up the five minute video walk through, I want you to know that so far, ever church we’ve been in is painted from the bottom to the top or maybe from the top to the bottom. I have serious questions not necessarily in the order of building the foundation, but the order in which they painted and did all of the ornate artwork.
And finally, here is a video walk through. This is one of two Cathedrals we explored in Mdina. We also sat at a cafe and had a lovely lunch. Those will come in the next post.
For now, let the beauty and the rich history and remembrance of the presence of both good and evil enter into you as you walk through such a place. Be reminded that good and evil exists in the highest and lowest of places. People possess both as well and make a conscious decision which to choose on a constant basis. With so much vitriol in the world right now, be silent as you walk through with me and feel the depth of spirit guide you as you continue to choose over and over the goodness within and share that with others.
I am being offered in this new move the reminder that the world is such a bigger place than the narrow places of our minds, and our current conversations.