Friday, July 30, 2010

A Church in a Garage

In 1977 the parish of Sant' Illario di Poitiers began in a parking garage in the zone of Ottavia, about 20 km from the city center, just inside the GRA or "ring road." The area started as a rural township after World War II, and construction has never stopped! Today the zone has over 20,000 people in 4 sq. km. The church was renovated in 1992 and today it is a "feast for the eyes."
This is the view of the neighborhood
looking southwest from where I parked the car.

This is the view looking northeast, including McDonald's.

When approaching the church I was first greeted by a large banner welcoming kids to the parish recreational facilities, the "oratorio."

This is the entrance ramp to the "garage" church, under an apartment building that houses the parish center on the first floor.

When entering the church you come upon a cross-shaped, step down baptismal pool.
Beyond the pool is a large square altar, and every surface, top and sides, is covered with painted images.
At the far end is the presider's chair.

An area for daily liturgies and eucharistic reservation
is to the right of the baptismal pool when you enter.

The only windows in the space are along the entrance ramp, and together with the doors, they have images made of etched and colored glass.
It is difficult to comprehend all of the images and symbolism in one visit. Different artists have worked to cover every inch of space in this "garage."

1 comment:

Maureen said...

Oh...... My...... this is over the top beautiful. I wish I could see it in real life and sit in one of those chairs for at least an hour.....How did you ever find this? Thanks for sharing.