Monday, June 25, 2012

Lo-Tiv-Ro Tour Day 9

Today was the day that I toured the Vatican Museums and the four ancient major basilicas or papal basilicas of Rome. We started with the tour of the Vatican Museum, the Sistine Chapel, and St. Peter's Basilica:
Since we were not allowed to take pictures within the Sistine Chapel, I opted to take pictures of some of the ceilings throughout the museums. This is all painted although it does look like it is carved or plastered:
 Also, there were some gorgeous floors that made me see quilt patterns all over the place:
Another ceiling:
And floor:
Raphael's painting The Fire in the Borgo:
And, another floor:
See, I told you that we couldn't take pictures and were supposed to be quiet. However, one of the things that really disturbed me was how many people ignored the signs. People seem to think that the signs are there for everybody else and they do not have to follow them. Just irks me..... and off the soap box.

This sign was obviously explaining to people the correct way to take the stairs, even though I really did want to scoot down them on my butt.
After we left the Sistine Chapel, we headed into St. Peter's Basilica. Now there are amazing doors at each of the basilicas. One is the Holy Door, which is only opened during Jubilee years. It is said that during Jubilee years if a pilgrim walks through all four of the holy doors then they will be washed clean of their sins. During the non-Jubilee years, when you touch the doors your are said to receive a blessing.
A shot inside St. Peter's Basilica:  
After the tour of St. Peters, we had a couple of hours to kill (or have lunch) before we headed out on the tour of the remaining three basilicas. So, I inhaled an orange and a croissant that I took from the breakfast buffet and ran down to the Castel Sant'Angelo and The Angel Bridge. I took a look back at St. Peter's and I would like for you all to note the clouds in the sky. Now I wonder why it is that every other day that I was in Rome the sun was out and it was beautiful, yet the one day that I'm visiting these four holy places the clouds come out and thunder rolled....I predicted that would happen.

Here is a shot of one of the angels on the bridge getting their air guitar on:
In the afternoon, the first basilica that we visited was the Basilica of Saint Paul Outside the Walls:
 The Holy Door:
The Blessing Door:
Inside:
The windows were not made with glass but rather with thinly sliced alabaster:
 The next basilica was the Archbasilica of St. John Lateran 
 Holy door:
 Blessing door:
 Inside:
As part of the basilica is the Scala Sancta or Holy Stairs. These stairs, according to Christian tradition, are the steps that led up to the praetorium of Pontius Pilate where Jesus Christ stood during his trial. Now people come to these stairs and will "walk" up them saying a prayer and can receive plenary indulgence, however, you can only go as fast as the person in front of you and once you start the process up the steps on your knees you cannot turn back. The original steps are marble, but are covered in wood to protect them from wear.
The final basilica that we visited was Basilica de Santa Maria Maggiore.
 Holy Door:
 Blessing Door:
 Inside:

After visiting Santa Maria Maggiore, I headed off back to the hotel. It had been a long day and a lot had been seen. Sadly, my sense of direction was a little askew and I ended up walking the wrong direction for about 4 blocks until I figured out where I was on the map and turned myself around. I was pretty worn out by the time I returned to the hotel and after running out for a quick bite of gelato I fell asleep knowing that the next day was another early day as I was headed to Mount Vesuvius and Pompeii...

2 comments:

SAngRiA Smiles said...

VERY cool quilt options.

We need more Jubileeing here in the US!

Jane said...

I love my quilt!