Friday, November 6, 2015

Photo Essay: Santa Maria de Montserrat Abbey.

Santa Maria de Montserrat Abbey (or Monastery) is a Benedictine Abbey.
It’s located about 47 km (30 mi) to the north west of Barcelona (Catalonia, Spain), on the 1200 meter (about 4 000 ft) high mountain Montserrat.

The Catalan word Montserrat means “sawn mountain”.
Many tourists travel here every year to enjoy the serenity and the beauty of this remarkable place.

The Abbey has a long history and plays a great role in the religious and cultural life of Catalonia.

The building of the Abbey is gorgeous with amazing stained-glass windows, statues and paintings.

The present Benedictine community, living in the monastery, consists of about 70 monks who dedicate their lives to the service of God with the motto “Ora et Labora” (Pray and Work).
The Abbey is the home to one of the oldest boys’ choirs in Europe. A religious and music school in Montserrat appeared at the 14th century. Believers and tourists are able to enjoy different genres of religious choral music every day.

Many people (among them are not only the Catholics, but believers of different religions and even non-believers) come here to see the statue of Santa Maria de Montserrat or the Black Madonna (due to the color of her skin), patron saint of Catalonia.
Thousands of people stand in a queue to see the Black Madonna every day.

The image of Santa Maria is a truly beautiful 12th century Romanesque carving.

People believe that if you make a wish while touching the Black Madonna, your wish will come true. But every person has not more than several seconds to touch the statue and to make a wish.

Santa Maria de Montserrat Abbey is worth seeing.

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