Upon my arrival in Rome, my friends and I attended a mass at a Dominican parish not too far away. We figured it would be cool to attend, given our Dominican Order-appreciative background. This mass didn’t really have singing, and it was over within 40ish minutes. However, it was all in Italian. While I knew that going into it, you don’t really realize how lost you are until the congregation starts speaking and you sort of just mumble and pretend you know what’s going on. Anyhow, thanks to my lovely friends at Google, we found the location of a parish that provides English speaking masses. We gave that a shot last night. From the outside, it looked like this. <– Click that. We weren’t expecting much- well, I didn’t know what to expect- but I definitely did not expect the inside to look as it did. Mass was pleasant and in a small, but not neglected, chapel somewhere behind the main church. It was nice to speak in English and say, “Have a nice week,” at the end of mass without having to worry about translation.
Anyhow, this was made into an unexpected experience the second we walked into the church. We didn’t have time to walk around the enormous church beforehand, so we took our time coming out afterwards. I was able to answer some of my own questions, such as, “When was this built?” Renaissance style artwork was everywhere. Magnificent, huge paintings lined the walls, so I figured the church was old. And to answer my question, it turns out that in 1561, Michelangelo designed the church. No big deal.
That was the main church. Apparently this building is huge. I’m not really sure what else there was (we only passed through a courtyard on the way to the chapel), but it was amazing.
This is what the “chapel” looked like:
It was amazing. The entire room was painted. Totally unexpected.
Here are some other photos from around the main church: