|Thursday, December 5, 2019
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All Saints Church news, Puerto 

Close to the cathedral in Seville, but sufficiently tucked away to be off the radar of many tourists, there’s a remarkable museum housed in a former hospice for ageing priests, the Hospital de los Venerables Sacerdotes. I was drawn to it, not because I was feeling particularly like a ‘venerable sacerdote’, although that may have been part of it, but because of its wonderful collection of seventeenth-century paintings by artists including Murillo and Velásquez.

The building itself is a place of extraordinary calm, being constructed around a central courtyard with orange trees and a sunken fountain. To be able to wander around in the quiet, in the midst of a noisy city and in the course of a busy life, was sheer joy.
Being on holiday, if only for a few days, is a chance to allow ourselves time to do stuff, or to think about things, that we would not normally have time for. It’s a privilege to have the opportunity to do that, and it’s equally a privilege to welcome other people into our space so that they too can relax, reflect and enjoy a change of scene. It’s always a pleasure for me to see tourists wandering into our church or looking in from outside while the Sunday service is in progress. Back home I imagine they wouldn’t have the time or even the inclination to do that: here there is a space for them and they are welcome to use it however they choose.
The pulpit in the chapel of the Hospital de los Venerables has a large engraving on the front of it: the Latin command ‘intelligite’ – ‘understand’. I don’t know whether this is directed at the congregation or at the preacher, or both. But I do know that taking a holiday, whether in a crowded city, in the mountains or on the beach, is an opportunity to understand new things, about ourselves and about our surroundings. If that leads you to peek inside the church door on a Sunday morning, then please be our guest.
Our services: Holy Commu-nion on Sundays at 9.30 am and 11.00 am (German service at 5.00 pm, fortnightly in summer) and on Wednesdays at 10.00 am. Taizé worship (alternate Thursdays at 5.30 pm) will resume in September.
Chaplain: The Revd Dr Paula Clifford
Tel: 922 38 40 38; Email: paulaclifford4@gmail.com