Thursday, 3 October 2013

Sao Domingos, Lisbon

Nothing can prepare you for being inside Sao Domingos Church in Lisbon. It burned down in 1954, was re-built it, but not re-prettified. Instead it has been left with cracked pillars, burnt rock, and a blood-red interior. This is a serious church, in which life is in danger and under threat, and God is not smiling on us and protecting us. This church reminds us that we die in accidents and earthquakes and fires, and that there is dark side to life which is God's as well. I'm a heathen, and it connects with me. Visit it, but don't do the tourist one-lap-and-out. Stay. Absorb. Take photographs because that will make you look. Notice the old women praying and sitting in silence. And still people light candles in hope, because there is hope in this blood-red darkness.

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