I am finding photos in my archives that I have never blogged about before, some suitable for Norm’s Thursday Doors challenge. We were on our own our last day in Cairo, because we were going to Israel to join up with a tour group there. On recommendation, we decided to go to the Museum of Islamic Art (MIA).
The MIA in Cairo is considered one of the greatest in the world. It has an extensive collection of rare wood and plaster artifacts, as well as metal, ceramic, glass, crystal, and textile objects of all periods, from all over the Islamic world and representing different periods in Islamic history ranging from the 7th to the 19th centuries CE. The collection occupies 25 halls in 2 wings, one wing organized by period and the other organized by category. The MIA displays about 4,500 objects, but their total collection equals approximately 100,000 artifacts.
These photos represent only a small fraction of the items on display, but they were ones I found especially beautiful or significant. And, of course, featuring doors!
Since it is Good Friday, I thought this “top” would be appropriate – it is the dome inside the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem, which was built on what is believed to be the site of both the crucifixion and the tomb where Jesus was buried.
The church as it stands today is the same church that was built in the 12th century in the time of the Crusades. Here are some more photos I took there.
It was the most ornate church I had ever seen.
The church has several chapels and altars.
Within the church are the last four stations of the cross on the Via Dolorosa, the route Jesus walked carrying the cross.
The German city of Passau is located in Bavaria very close to the Austrian border, at the confluence of three rivers: The Danube, the Inn and the Itz. It was the last German city we stopped at during our cruise last June-July. We arrived at Passau on the U.S. Independence Day, July 4. This post is my contribution to Norm’s Thursday Doors 12/12/19.
Passau has a population of about 50,000, of which 12,000 are students at the local university. A devastating fire in 1662 destroyed most of the city, which was rebuilt in Baroque style.
Passau is known for its cathedral, St. Stephan, which has five organs! One of the organs is in the attic and the five can all be played at the same time. The organ(s) has 17,774 pipes and 233 registers, and it is the 2nd largest pipe organ in the world. We attended a concert showcasing this amazing sound after our walking tour. Concerts are held daily between May and September.
A cathedral door and details
Baroque décor characterizes the interior of St. Stephan.
We went out into a courtyard beside the cathedral.
In the courtyard are some extra panels and artifacts from the church.
We continued downhill from the church on the cobblestone streets of Old Town.
The city has been plagued by floods for centuries, due to its location at the junction of three rivers. On June 2, 2013, the old town suffered a severe flooding after it had rained for several days. The photo below shows how a street of Old Town looked on June 3.
Peak elevation of floods as far back as 1501 are displayed on the wall of the Old City Hall.
Hotel Wilder Mann
This pharmacy is one of the oldest in Passau. It is painted green, which was the “code” color for pharmacies in times when many people were illiterate.
The Dom Museum entrance – this museum displays artifacts, relics and history of St. Stephan Cathedral.
Baroque architectural details adorn the ceiling of the palace.
Passau has a Daschsund Museum! These sculptures are outside the entrance.
“Coffee and love are best hot!”
I found interesting that this shop door has a nativity scene above it.
The sign on this Baroque decorated door advertises a one-bedroom apartment within.
Prominent above the city is Veste Oberhaus, a fortress founded in 1219.
Information for this post obtained from:
Wikipedia article Passau
TripAdvisor The Höllgasse
I am entering this post into Norm’s Thursday Doors, as part of my tour of Chicago’s places of worship. Today I feature two Roman Catholic churches, St. Edward Church and St. Gregory the Great Church, both on the north side.
We visited St. Edward Roman Catholic Church during Open House Chicago, having put it on my “must see” list because it contains a painted replica of the Bayeux Tapestry. We had seen the original in Bayeux, France only a few months before.
St. Edward’s take on the story of the tapestry focuses on Edward who had been king of England and his benevolence as king. He was very pious and supposedly saw visions and cured people by his touch, which later earned him the status of a saint in the Roman Catholic Church. Edward was childless and William of Normandy was his cousin.
In Normandy, France, we didn’t hear much about Edward. There the emphasis was on William, Duke of Normandy (also known as “the Conqueror”), who invaded England in 1066 and took the English throne from Harold, who had succeeded Edward as king. Harold did not have long to rule: he became king in January of 1066, following Edward’s death, and William’s invasion, known as the Battle of Hastings, happened later that same year.
The replica was painted in oils on the ceiling of the narthex of St. Edward Church by Mae Connor-Anderson and is about 75 feet long. It is not complete, containing only 24 scenes and the Latin inscriptions were removed. The 24 scenes tell of St. Edward’s role in the events that led to the Battle of Hastings in 1066.
The merger of the Saxon and Norman cultures created a new culture from which the English language evolved. Government was a mix of Norman and Saxon traditions.
St. Edward Parish was founded in 1899 and its current church building was dedicated in 1940.
This is one of the doors from the narthex leading into the sanctuary. There are several of these which all have the same design.
Confessional and confessional door
The stained glass windows throughout the sanctuary depict many important events in Christianity and the life of Jesus Christ. The pair pictured below depicts the birth of Jesus and his presentation in the temple with Simeon.
St. Gregory the Great Roman Catholic Church has been serving the north side of Chicago since 1904, when immigrants from Luxembourg petitioned for a new parish. Its congregation today comprises many immigrant and ethnic groups.
Although it was one of the sites open to the public during Open House Chicago, my visit there was with a friend for a concert by International Chamber Artists, who perform there often. The music director at the church arranges these and other concerts and is a fine musician himself.
St. Gregory is absolutely gorgeous inside. It was built in the 1920s in Norman Gothic style. It has a lavishly decorated ceiling and an intricate white reredos* behind the altar. The pulpit, shrines and stations of the cross were all hand-carved in Germany. The windows are made of English and jewel glass.
The door at the front of the church…
was not actually where we entered. Because we were ushers for the concert, we had to arrive an hour early to help with the preparation for the concert. Here is the door we entered.
You will notice that this and other doors in the church have small windows with diamond shapes in them.
The main sanctuary with its colorful and intricate decoration.
The main altar, with its white reredos in front of the back wall.
Shrine to the Virgin Mary, common in Catholic churches (St. Edward has one also, pictured above).
Inside the front entrance door
Confessional and its door
An inner door – I noticed that the diamond shapes all had pictures, symbols or Greek writing inside them.
I began to look at these more closely and saw a variety of pictures, each one unique.
On the church’s web site is their mission statement and that, guided by the Holy Spirit, they are committed to: *Celebrating and sharing God’s goodness by providing beautiful experiences of prayer and worship *Providing opportunities for people to grow in their faith, hope, and love *Extending the healing of Christ into the lives of all people so that they may come to know and share in the love Christ has for our world *Offering opportunities for fellowship, hospitality, and service *Evangelizing (spreading) the Good News of Jesus Christ through experiences of the fine arts
Of the two churches, I found St. Gregory to be the more beautiful and it has more interesting doors, but I enjoyed looking at the paintings of the tapestry panels at St. Edward, which were explained in a booklet the docents were giving out.
*What is a reredos? Promounced “RARE-eh-dahs,”according to Miriam Webster online, it is an ornamental wood or stone screen or partition wall behind the altar of a church. The term’s first known use was in the 14th century.
We arrived in Regensburg by bus, where our new ship was waiting for us. We had been on the Viking Gefjon up until our arrival in Nuremberg, but the ship could not proceed south on the Danube because of a broken lock! So a sister ship, the Viking Sigyn, which was coming north, became our new home for the rest of the trip. All the passengers on each of the ships were transferred from one ship to the other, retaining the same stateroom number. Although the staff was different, our activity director, Alex, made the switch with us. Because of this unusual situation, we arrived in time to do some exploring along the waterfront in Regensburg before it got dark, and we stayed docked there overnight.
For Norm’s Thursday Doors, please join me on a walking tour in the medieval center of Regensburg! Founded by the Romans in 179 CE, it is one of Germany’s oldest towns and is the 4th largest in Bavaria. Its original name was Casta Regina, which means “Fortress by the River Regen.” It was lucky to be spared major bombing during WWII, so many of its medieval structures remain intact.
The 12th century old stone bridge was used during the Crusades on the route to the Holy Land.
Porta Praetoria – another section of the original medieval wall
I could totally relate to this sign! 😀
Cobblestone street in the “old town.”
This building is called “Goliath House” due to the painting on the side. The Schindlers (of Schindler’s List fame) lived here at one time.
Patrician building – the patrons, or rulers, of the town would build a tower that was the highest in town. A new patron would build a taller tower. These towered buildings would house the city government – the rathaus, or town hall. This pink tower still stands but it is not the most recent. It is now used as a student dormitory!
Here is a wonderfully delicious doorway to walk through!
Lots of construction was going on in the old town when we were there.
Looking across a street (with limited access due to construction) at two doors for the “price” of one! Probably noisy at the time for the inhabitants of nos. 3 and 5!
Take a little rest or…
…shop for jewelry and pet a friendly dog!
This is Neupfarrkirche, built on the site of a destroyed Jewish synagogue after the Jews were expelled from the city. It is now an evangelical church. King Maximillian had protected the Jews but when he died in 1519, the town destroyed the synagogue and drove the Jews out. Inside the church is an exhibit about the church’s history and the Jewish community of Regensburg.
The townspeople also destroyed the Jewish cemetery after the expulsion of the Jews. Some of their gravestones have been incorporated into walls.
A Jewish community developed in Regensburg again when they were allowed to return in 1669 but they were not able to dedicate a new synagogue until 1841. It was demolished in 1907 for fear of collapse and another synagogue was built on a different site in 1912 when the Jewish population had grown to about 600. The synagogue was destroyed in 1938 during Kristallnacht by the Nazis. A new synagogue has been under construction since 2018.
This is a “stumble stone” that tells the name of a person who lived here, that died in one of the Nazi camps.
Another No. 3!
We reached the Domplatz, site of the Cathedral of St. Peter. The Gothic Cathedral of St. Peter was built in the 1200s using whatever materials they had, so it is a patchwork of sandstone and limestone. Here you can see this “patchwork.”
The spires were not added until 1868 on the order of King Ludwig I, whose statue is in the Domplatz.
Under the cross in front is St. Peter in a boat.
Here’s a close up (you can see that Peter is holding an oar!):
The cathedral’s doors
The Cathedral of St. Peter has the largest hanging organ in the world.
Pope Benedict came to the cathedral during his tenure as pope.
Inside the cathedral are beautifully vivid stained glass windows, a number of statues and religious relics.
Continuing on our walk in the old town, there were many doors to admire.
Such colorful souvenirs for sale!
This is the entrance to a restaurant.
Altes Rathaus – old town hall (notice the patrician tower!)
Regensburg is a cultural center and has an opera house. This bodega serves wine and tapas. The mural is from the opera Carmen, the theme of the bodega. Carmen was staged here at one time.
The drinking age here for wine and beer is 16. To buy hard liquor or cigarettes, you have to be 18. If you want to purchase cigarettes from a vending machine like this one, you have to insert your ID for verification.
There is even a golf museum in Regensburg!
We entered a little church, Stiftskirche St. Johann
Regensburg is considered one of the top destinations to visit in Germany. Its medieval center is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Nuremberg’s St. Sebaldus is a medieval church, built 1225-1273, and Lutheran since the Reformation. It takes its name from Sebaldus, an 8th century hermit and missionary who is the patron saint of Nuremberg. We visited this magnificent church during our tour of Nuremberg on July 2, 2019 as a stop on our Viking river cruise.
St. Sebaldus was originally built as a Romanesque basilica and in the 14th century several changes were made, including widening of the side aisles, making the steeples higher, and building the chancel. Two towers were added in the 15th century and in the 17th century it was remodeled in Baroque style. During World War II, the church suffered severe damage; undamaged areas of the old interior include the Shrine of St. Sebaldus and the stained glass windows.
The church contains beautiful religious art, both inside and out. Because this post is a contribution to Norm’s Thursday Doors, many of the photos below are of exterior and interior doors of the church.
More exterior doors:
Shrine of St. Sebaldus
One of the things I found fascinating was the juxtaposition of the old and the modern inside and outside St. Sebaldus Church.
There was an organ in the church by the 14th century, and another was installed in the 15th century. The main organ was built in 1440-41 by Heinrich Traxdorf and until its destruction during an Allied bombing raid in early 1945, it was one of the oldest playable organs in the world. The new organ was installed in 1975.