Valpo’s Brits

18 Mar

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Valparaiso shelters a number of immigrant cultures in the city; German, Italian, Croatian, Spanish, Irish and British. Saint Paul’s Anglican Church of Valparaiso is a contribution from the British community. It was the first protestant church built in Chile. The church is one of the places in the city where you can get a really close look at the European immigration of the end of the 19th and beginning of the 20th century.

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Its English Neo Gothic style is the reflection of its period, when religious freedom did not exist and protestants had to handle a low profile. At the time it was built, 1858, Chile was a Catholic country.  The church was required by the Catholics in control not to have any outward sign of religious affiliation. Exterior crosses and icons were banned.

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Its most complex and beautiful treasure is the Queen Victoria Memorial Organ, an imposing musical instrument that was designed exclusively for this church and was installed about 1902, in homage to the Queen who passed away in 1901. It was donated by the British community of Valparaíso and was designed by William Lloyd and built by the Fosters & Andrews Company in Britain.

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Considered the best of its type in South America it has been restored and is constantly repaired and taken care of by a specialized musician. Every Sunday, at 12:30, free concerts are given for the public. The day we were there the pastor played sacred pieces of British origin.

The architectural details of the church reflect its era and its ties to its British Anglican roots.

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DSC06519We enjoy exploring the architecture of the countries we visit. The buildings illuminate the history of the place and its people. St. Paul’s is a great example.

4 Responses to “Valpo’s Brits”

  1. Ursula Freer March 18, 2013 at 6:12 pm #

    Your historical reports are quite interesting and Dana’s photography is delightful. How well you complement each other!

    • Jill March 18, 2013 at 7:47 pm #

      Working on the blog together has been a highlight of the trip.

  2. Neil Freer March 18, 2013 at 4:01 pm #

    Mornin’ , well here anyway…. some of us do not want to eat fish and sea products from the Pacific, Fukushima radiation dump and all that, at least in the northern hemi. Is there an easy way y’all could determine if they harvest sushi type seaweed down there along the coast………La Montanita coop is interested in finding a source down in the southern hemi ………….I love sushi but be damned if I’ll eat it if parts of it are coming from Japan, Korea, CA………….and “they” are not telling us what’s happening, happened to the fruit and veggie crops in CA………yuck.
    n

    • Jill March 18, 2013 at 6:03 pm #

      Haven’t seen any sushi here in Valparaiso. Can’t say if that is true throughout Chile. Not on the menu in restaurants except for ceviche. We have no idea if or what is exported.

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