Saturday, 5 September 2015

San Fernando Cathedral | Photo Heavy

 San Fernando may be on the small side, as cathedrals go,
 but it's very pretty and has a fascinating history.
It's an important local landmark because of its role
In happier times, future Alamo hero James Bowie was married here.
But as Bowie defended the Alamo, Mexican general Santa Anna 
took over the church as an observation post and raised a flag
of no quarter that began the deadly siege ~ 
no quarter meaning no prisoners.  
 In 1936 some remains were uncovered and since they included charred bones
and fragments of uniforms, they were wildly purported to be those of
Davy Crockett, William Travis and James Bowie.
(Never mind that the Alamo defenders didn't wear uniforms.)  
 The cathedral actively supports this theory, with a plaque on an outside
wall proclaiming that the remains of the Alamo heroes are entombed
in the chapel at the left-hand side of the entrance to the cathedral.
 The church hierarchy obviously isn't for letting the truth
stand in the way of a  good story. 
 San Fernando cathedral is also unusual in that
photography is actively encouraged.

 I'm not one for idolatry for its own sake, but I do appreciate
the craftsmanship as a art. 
So, visiting churches/cathedrals?  Yes or no.
How about photography (respecting other visitors or worshippers as a given)?
Should churches charge for entrance? 


Ladkyis said...

We like visiting cathedrals and churches - I would love to show you the delightful little church at Kilpeck if you are ever in this area - not a great one for worshipping and idolatry but each to their own.
Photography is such a normal part of things these days that I have no problem as long as the photographer doesn't get too "in your face" while getting that essential shot. Most cathedrals that we have been in have a shop these days and sometimes volunteers who tell you about the history. The bit of the bible about the money lenders in the temple always springs to mind but everywhere has to make a profit these days so...

alexa said...

Great clarity in those photos, Ruth - and yes to visiting, and yes to photographing but discreetly and not during services. Charge for entrance? Hmmm, I guess if it's a very historic building and the only way of keeping it open and maintained is to ask for donations, then, I guess, yes?

Sian said...

I'm interested in the idea of a church which encourages photography, because I've never been keen. My FIL "The Dean" didn't allow photography during wedding ceremonies and I guess I've been a bit influenced by that

Abi said...

I love visiting churches and cathedrals, partly because my father is a vicar and partly because i love history. I don't mind taking discreet photos but wouldn't if a service was going on or people were clearly praying or worshiping.
I did a whole module last year looking at public history. We spent an entire lecture discussing the complicated issue of churches and cathedrals charging for entry. I don't like paying for entry because I think we should be free to go into any place of worship but a cathedral embodies so much more than just religion. It's funny, I would happily pay to visit a historic site....Oh I could have so many discussions about this!

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