Roaming around Antigua, you almost get tired of taking pictures of ruined churches. If you’re on the Candelaria side of town, you can see the another set of Antigua Guatemala Ruins : La Candelaria.
Clearly, it’s not as sexy as some of the pictures you’ll see online. It’s currently under heavy renovation … meaning it will be done in about 10 years. As for the details, its facade, finished with stucco, evidence minutiae on top. The remains of just the left tower, which is decorated with four twisted columns arranged in pairs, two on base and two above is preserved. The right tower is less than half a foot.
What can be seen today evidence severe damage to the various earthquakes that tore it down, starting with 1717. The temple was rebuilt, but was hit again with the earthquake of 1751.It was elevated to a parish in 1754 and definitively succumbed, like many other temples, before the 1773 earthquake.
The swirling columns and colonial architecture reveal a church that even now waxes nostalgic over the remnants of its architectural beauty. It must have been a splendid example of Baroque craftsmanship when first built, in 1548, at the behest of Bishop Francisco Marroquin. Then, earthquakes and fires attacked starting in 1717. Rebuilding occurred at least twice but in 1773, much of it was shaken, and crumbled to its foundations and this is much as we see it today.
From the inside, you can see that there would a lot of work that would need to continue to restore parts of this church.
If you’re looking for La Candelaria … here’s your requisite map