Dancing St. Francis
The Cathedral Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi
Karen Rivera 2009
No Pennies, Please
Colorado Springs, Colorado
Patron Saint of the Kitchen
Roadside Tin, Chimayo, New Mexico
Karen Rivera 2006
The Deacon’s Blues
High Road to Taos
Four Corners Baskets
Local Native American Basket Makers incorporate the designs of crosses, native plants, mountains and rivers into their wonderful baskets. Made of raw reeds and natural dyes, the basketmakers weave spirituality into their art.
Saint Ray of Richardsville
Taos, New Mexico
Our Lady of Guadalupe
Pike’s Peak, Colorado
Patron Saint of Travelers
Acrylic on raw alderwood
Karen Rivera 2005
The Monastery of Christ in the Desert, Abiquiu, New Mexico, U.S.A., was founded in 1964 by Fr. Aelred Wall with monks of Mount Saviour Monastery. Christ in the Desert is located in Chama Canyon in northwestern New Mexico outside of the village of Abiquiu. It is a fascinating blend of sustainable systems including passive solar, straw bale buildings and medieval silence.
The long, dusty, potholed thirteen mile drive through the serentity and peace of the Monastery’s dirt road offers a true modern-day pilgrim’s journey through miles of Federal Wilderness.
Information about visiting Christ in the Desert can be found here. It’s a remarkably moving experience to walk in and spend the day, as is the rule, in utter silence.
The small villages along Highway 55 have always held a special place in my hard-scrabble New Mexican heart. Using the few resources available in the barren, harsh acres early settlers recycled the ever-present rocks into homes, walls, and churches.
In Punta de Aqua, the rough-cut stone San Antonio Church stands as a monument to an earlier example of sustainable and green building.
If you’d like to walk through Punta de Aqua at street level, click here to go to Google Maps, then click satellite.
Nuestra Nuestra Senora de Los Dolores de Manzano
Manzano, New Mexico
San Antonio Church
San Antonio, New Mexico
Chilili, New Mexico
Carlos Sena’s Carved Cross
Our Lady of Sorrows Cemetary
Bernalillo, New Mexico
kd sebastian 2010
This unusual obelisk style grave stone is beautifully carved by hand from rock brought down from Dixon, New Mexico. Lilies, matching flaming hearts and stylized swirls give a European feel to this stone. Truly the work of a craftsman, it stood out as one of the few stones not vandalized or tagged with gang signed graffiti.
Andreita Avila’s Cross
Our Lady of Sorrows Cemetery
Bernalillo, New Mexico
kd sebastian 21010
There’s something so touching about handmade grave markers. Many of the cemeteries in New Mexico have suffered from vandalism and neglect. Families die out, move away or simply abandon the traditional New Mexican ways.
My favorite crosses are what I call the “hard times” crosses: handmade from whatever durable materials could be afforded. Rebar, cement, wood, rocks–everything is fair game and free. Oddly enough, the poorer the community, the better kept the graveyards are.
Andreita Avila’s Cross is on the left side of Our Lady of Sorrows Graveyard in Bernalillo, New Mexico. It’s proximity to the Placitas off-ramp has made it a vandal’s dream so it was heart-warming to find this small pocket size memorial exactly where it was placed years ago.