San Augustine Monastery and Church

Ecuador is a beautiful country with many different towns and cities to visit, all filled with different sights and attractions to keep you entertained. Take for instance the capital of Ecuador, Quito, which is 3000 meters high and can be found up in the Andes Mountains surrounded by volcanic peaks. The charming city has been listed as a UNESCO world heritage site due to its many old and traditional buildings. The capital is quite conservative, so be prepared to leave your shorts behind as most attractions and churches that you might visit will not accept immodest clothing.

One of the churches that you must go visit is the colonial San Augustine Church and Monastery that can be found a block away from the Plaza de Independencia. You can go visit the Monastery throughout the week but should be aware that it is closed to the public on weekends. The church, on the other hand, is open to the public every day. In 1809 independence was declared at the San Augustine Church and Monastery and this proved to be an event that changed Ecuador forever.

The San Augustine monks belong a religious order made up of many different monastic societies in the thirteenth century, all of which go by the name of St. Augustine of Hippo. St. Augustine led the example of leading a monastic life and wrote many instructions for those who wanted to follow him. Since the sixteenth century many of the Augustine monasteries that had been previously formed were lost or destroyed. Today only a tenth of the original order remains.

As you explore the intricate and beautiful Spanish architecture of San Augustine, you will notice how tranquil and quiet the Church and Monastery. This is especially evident when you walk into the peaceful courtyard that is located in the middle of the building. The courtyard is regularly filled with fresh, fragrant flowers to add to the peaceful atmosphere.

The San Augustine Church has many beautiful altars, candelabras and oil paintings from Miguel de Santiago, a well-known artist who spent many years in refuge at the monastery. To this day the robed monks that live there look after the paintings that are admired by the many who visit San Augustine. The walls of the San Augustine Church and Monastery are golden in color, adding to the wealth that is already contained by the church's walls.


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