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The Most Catholic of Kingdoms

I read a bit before this trip on Spain and especially the reign of Isabella. It was her desire to show the world that Spain was the most Catholic nation. 

These are photos all taken in the cathedral at Jaen, the heart of Spain's olive country.

It was an enormous church with at least a dozen side altars. The Spanish love of mannequins in clothing they never would have worn for real, escapes me, but the big picture is clear -- that suffering, pain, bleeding and creepy skeletons are the main imagery and that opulence and treasures beyond the imagination of the masses belong to the church.

Gold and silver chalices and candle sticks so valuable they are kept in a vault in modern times. 

The point being this --- being Catholic is about suffering you can imagine because these manaquins look like people and Point 2 - Look at how rich the church is! God loves us best! 

The gospel of prosperity, as preached by Joel Osteen and many others, is simply the modern version of this. 

And, by the way, the candles are electric and have a specific price which differed from altar to altar. As Mark pointed out, dropping in a coin and waiting to see what lit was a lot like playing the slots. 


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