We left Cuenca this morning with heavy hearts and maybe a tear or two… (you’re crying! I’m not crying). But we arrived in Quito to spend some time with the Penley family and are very much looking forward to that.
Once we landed in Quito the Penleys picked us up and we had a great lunch together.
After lunch we headed down to the heart of Quito to see some of the sights this capital city has to offer.
This city is definitely larger than Cuenca. Approximately 3 million people live in this valley. This picture is just one little section, we will try for some bigger viewpoints over the next few days.
The next couple of photos are of the Basilica, which is a huge Catholic Church that is very gothic looking. It was pretty incredible to tour.
Amazing stained glass windows.
One interesting theme we noticed was the prominence of the mother Mary instead of Jesus. Just one point of example, here is a shrine to Jesus where you can light a candle and pray to Jesus (we won’t get into the theological discussion of shrines and candles in today’s post). This shrine was literally in the back corner of the cathedral. Notice how many candles are lit here?
This is the shrine for Mary, placed in the center of the cathedral. Notice the number of candles here? Not to mention flowers and all sorts of other stuff.
The missionaries here explained to us that this is very very common practice. People are often caught up in a system of works based faith, and misplaced focus of whom to even put their faith in.
Certainly Mary is a blessed person chosen to do some incredible things for God’s glory, but she is a person none the less. Jesus is God in the flesh. He willingly died on our behalf and rose from the grave, defeating death and making a way for us to be free from the bondage of sin. I pray we can make an impact in revealing that simple but powerful truth to the people of this beautiful country.
On with the sight seeing…
Emily and Aiden being crazy outside the presidential mansion.
This is a Jesuit church that we weren’t allowed to take photos of the inside. We got a very nice tour of this one with a very knowledgeable guide who spoke English fairly well. It was very cool. Tons of gold leaf covering all the ornately crafted altars and columns, beautiful church.
Final stop of the night was in a cute little courtyard restaurant just off the presidential square. Wonderful dinner, even better conversations. Looking forward to a few more days!