Sagrada Familia

15 10 2014

Sagrada Familia is probably the last, God-forbid, greatest Church of our times that is under construction. Blatant and scandalous comments are rampant against the great Antoni Gaudi’s work of, God inspired, art. Lately, “controversial” is the adjective used to describe the on-going work of art.

Take a look at some of the past comments:

George Orwell

George Orwell said it was “one of the most hideous buildings in the world” and rather hoped it would be destroyed during the Spanish Civil War.

Enric Massip

The architect Enric Massip, a member of the Advisory Committee to the City of Barcelona, denounced the basilica as “an artificially inflated space lacking in soul.”

Now take a look at the some of the awe-inspiring & breathtaking architecture that is Sagrada Familia:

Ceiling of the Sagrada Família in Barcelona, Spain


Then take a look at the architecture created by one of the critics, Enric Massip:



…enough said.


God bless, protect and give strength to Sagrada Familia and all the amazing folks responsible for the on-going construction of the work of God. Please pray for the safe completion of the Gaudi’s greatest masterpiece, so it can stand testament to the Grace & Inspiration of Christ Jesus. Amen!


Sagrada Família church in Barcelona has been under construction for 128 years. “My Client is in no hurry,” Antoni Gaudí once said, referring to God.

Spanish architect and artist Antonio Gaudi pictured in 1920





The Birth of a New Testament

7 06 2011

I wanted to share a great article from Dr. Charles Stanley ministries’- InTouch monthly magazine; the article- “The Birth of a New Testament: How the Christian canon was formed“ focuses on the evolution of Christianity and the New Testament:

“Paper, ink, leather, thread, and glue. Today we’re so accustomed to the Bible as
a singular physical artifact that we forget Scripture didn’t always exist in its present
form. Battles with heretics, missionary journeys, and martyrdom—these among other
aspects of the Bible’s history make it much more colorful than we often realize.
Knowing how the Holy Spirit led Jesus’ early followers to pen and pass down the
church’s sacred writings can invigorate our hunger for truth and our efforts to commune
with the Savior. That’s why we created this graphical account of the Christian Canon’s
development—canon meaning ‘rule’ or ‘a standard of measurement.’

Due to lack of space, this article focuses on the New Testament but tries to accommodate for the Old when appropriate. Also, it’s important to note that while we have attempted to be as accurate as possible, there remains some debate among scholars as to the precise dates of certain events—most experts preferring to provide a range of years rather than a definite moment in history. What you see reflected here is a fair approximation according to available research, rather than a scholarly account, and
is intended only as a general introduction. We hope it inspires you to learn more by
doing research of your own. –CL”…read on.




Deaths of the Apostles



Codex Sinaiticus






Church of the Sagrada Familia- Part 1

15 08 2010

"On making this temple I set myself the idea of following one of our traditions, a tradition that fits us perfectly, the Mediterranean tradition. All architectural style has emerged from the shelter of the temple, and all new art that comes should be the same.”

Antoni Gaudi

Church of the Sagrada Família (Holy Family), often simply called the Sagrada Família, is a massive, privately-funded church that has been under construction in Barcelona, Spain since 1882 and is not expected to be complete until at least 2026. A portion of the building’s interior is scheduled to open for public worship and tours by September 2010. The Church is the master-work of the most renowned Spanish architect Antoni Gaudí (1852–1926), the project’s vast scale and characteristic design have made it one of Barcelona’s (and Spain’s) top tourist attractions for many years.

I had the privilege of visiting Sagrada Familia during May of 2010- as a matter of fact I had planned the Barcelona trip to specifically visit Sagrada Familia; I wanted to share a photo journal and notes (from various sources) from my visit; to view a slide show of my photos please ho here.

Looking at the Grand Passion Façade entrance to the West; the continuous construction is evident from way far-off because of the towering cranes.


The design of La Sagrada Família is brimming with Christian symbolism, as Gaudí intended the church to be the "last great sanctuary of Christendom". Its most striking aspect is its spindle-shaped Spires or towers.

Spires of the Passion Façade crowned by the Pinnacles



A total of 18 Spires are called for, representing in ascending order of height the 12 Apostles (100 meters),  the 4 Evangelists (Luke, Matthew, John & Mark), Mother Mary- the tower of the apse (arch/vault) and, tallest spire of all, Jesus Christ– the tower of the transept. The central highest spire, that representing Jesus Christ, will measure 170 meters and is to be surmounted by a giant Cross; the spires’ total height will approximately be the same height of mountain Montjuïc. When completed Sagrada Familia will be the tallest church building in the world as well as the church with the tallest spire in the world.


Ground plan and drawing of the Church by Francesc Berenguer


The Church will have three grand façades: the Nativity façade to the East, the Glory façade to the South (yet to be completed) and the Passion façade to the West. The Nativity façade was built before work was interrupted in 1935 and bears the most direct Gaudí influence. The Passion façade is especially striking and according to Gaudi transmits drama and cruelty, including figures of Christ being flogged and nailed on the Crucifix. The sculptor Josep Maria Subirachs presents the Passion of Jesus Christ, from the Last Supper to the Crucifixion. The Glory Façade, which began construction in 2002, will represent one’s ascension to God. It will also depict various scenes such as Hell, Purgatory, and will include elements such as the Seven Deadly Sins and the Seven Virtues.

A closer look at the Passion Façade to the West


The Nativity Façade to the East; the Glory Façade is under construction.


The church plan is that of a Latin cross with five aisles. The central nave vaults reach 45 meters while the side nave vaults reach 30 meters. The transept has three aisles. The columns are on a 7.5 meter grid. The columns of the interior are a unique Gaudí design. Besides branching to support their load, their ever-changing surfaces are the result of the intersection of various geometric forms. The simplest example is that of a square base evolving into an octagon as the column rises, then a sixteen-sided form, and eventually to a circle.

Interior of Sagrada Familia; the tree-like columns and starred polygons of the vaulting recall the interior of a wood.


“Architecture creates the organism and that is why it must have a law in consonance with nature. Everything comes from the great book of nature; all the styles (architectural) are organisms related to nature”.

Antoni Gaudi

Themes throughout the decoration include words from the liturgy. The towers are decorated with words such as "Hosanna", "Excelsis", and "Sanctus"; the great doors of the Passion façade reproduce words from the Bible in various languages including Catalan; and the Glory façade is to be decorated with the words from the Apostles’ Creed.

Various artifacts from the Sagrada Familia museum, which is within the Church’s premises.


The symbolism that Gaudi reflects in Sagrada Familia is not sustained only through the imagery and the paintings, but also incorporates the symbols in the architecture, giving an expressive character to this works. The Church is one of the most significant characteristics of all Gaudian architecture. This is why some commentators have classified the Sagrada Familia as a mystical poem. Consequently, the Gaudian attitude of imitating nature in his architectural work is fully coherent with his religious fervor- since, for a believer the human being is placed on earth to continue the divine work.


To be continued…



Merry Christmas!

16 12 2007

Merry Christmas and a very happy New Year to you and yours.



the life you gave

18 05 2006

the pain i did not endure
the suffering i did not prevail
the blood i did not shed
the embarrassment i did not experience
the burden i did not carry
the purity i could not possibly comprehend
the peace i wish i could spread
the hand i did not lend
the way i could not lead
the house i could not build
the bread i did not freely share
the water i made impure
the lustful thought i could not purge
the slavery, with evil, i could not break
the life i did not live…
and will never live. 

Jesus Christ

how great are you!
for you –
endured the pain,
prevailed the suffering
shed the blood
forgave the insult
carried the weight of the world
defined purity
creator of peace
always there for help
led the world
built many houses
gave us bread and taught us how to share it
made rivers of living water flow through your children
the holy life you lived
the devil you conquered
the life that you lived and sacrificed,
so that we may live that life through you…

…thank you my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

mahesh babu punyamurthula