Monday, August 12, 2013


The Holy Family concrete statue
Juan Diego concrete statue holding the cloak of the Virgin of Guadalupe

Closeup of the handpainted Virgin of Guadalupe

Back side of the Juan Diego concrete statue

The Holy Family Church with nicho containing statue of the Holy Family

The concrete statue of the Holy Family stands at the left of the church.

This week I discovered two sweet concrete statues outside The Holy Family Catholic Church of Fort Collins, Colorado. One is the Holy Family, Mary, Joseph, and the boy Jesus. The other is the infamous Juan Diego, holding his cloak with the miraculous image of the Virgin of Guadalupe. Sadly, the statue of the Guadalupe is now missing from the landscape, and the fountain was not running. (See the photo below from the church website for reference.)  I planned to photograph inside the church, but it was locked. I will have to visit one morning after Mass, and ask what happened to the Guadalupe.

Photo of The Holy Family Catholic Church

Built in 1924, this historic Old Town church began serving Spanish-speaking Catholic sugarbeet workers at the Great Western Sugar plant. Their community, known as "Alta Vista" and "Spanish Colony," was founded in 1927. There is now the Museo de las Trés Colonias, dedicated to the history of these Hispanic communities. I will make a foray there the next time it is open. Fort Collins History Connection

Forgotten Fort Collins's website tells the story of Lee Martinez who helped build the church. His family came from Southern Colorado's Huerfano County in 1906. I am enjoying reading about his prominent role in the early days of Fort Collins history.

So...much more photography to come in my exploration of the Spanish-Catholic influences on this frontier town of Fort Collins.

Please stop by and visit Rebecca Brooks' Mornings with Mary, as I have linked my post to her sharing.


J C said...

I truly love statues that are "weathered" as well as those that are hand painted by someone obviously not professional. It gives them so much character. Thanks for sharing this/

susie @ persimmon moon cottage said...

The Juan Diego statue you showed us touched my heart. Were you able to discover what happened to the Virgin of Guadalupe that had been there? I am very happy to have found so many lovely images of The Virgin of Guadalupe here on your site. Seeing their beauty puts me in such a place of joy and tranquility.

Nonnie said...

Love went into these pieces, for sure. thank you for sharing

GlorV1 said...

I too love the weathered look of the statues. All beautiful Laurie. Thank you.:)

Magical Mystical Teacher said...

I'm glad to know of this statuary. I'm going to be visiting a friend in Fort Collins in November, so guess where my camera and I will be?

Blue Lady of the Monsoons

Unknown said...

I just love when people share the religious statuary, icons and symbols they photograph when they are out and about. That definitely includes you. Did the Guadalupe statue get stolen? As for the church being locked, that doesn't surprise me in this day and age. I know the doors only open in most churches when there is a service going on. Sad, but realistic. In my travels over time, I always visited churches but now only the most touristy ones are unlocked. I used to even go journal in my local parish in the old days when it was too stressful to be at home. No longer.

Unknown said...

Laurie, that last comment was from Fran aka Redondowriter but it wouldn't accept Google or my Typepad IDs.

Priti Lisa said...

Thank you for sharing you photography Laurie. I know of Fort Collins only because I have sent packages there so it was with extra interest that I read about this church. Also looked at you other posts below and really enjoyed my visit here today. I love seeing the world through your eyes, we find the same things wondrous. ♥

rebecca said...

dear laurie,
it is so exciting to discover timeless expressions of devotion within the neighborhood of ones home town. it does ignite a deep interest in those who lived before us, and delight in their offerings that remain today. thank you for a taste of holy fort collins.

Hettienne Grobler said...

these statues are so 'authentic' - straight from the hands and heart - not all 'prettified' into modern day images of what people should look like. About thirteen years ago we took the kids to Disneyworld in Florida - a huge trip from here - and I discovered the Queen of Heaven shrine and mega-store - I had never in my life seen so many statues and since then I was hooked!! I had to do my shopping superquick as hubby and kids were dawdling outside :((