All I could see.
We drive up in our rental van named Carmen to a chapel nestled in the mountains. Chapel of the Holy Cross was designed by a Frank Lloyd Wright student, Marguerite Brunswig Staude. The Sedona chapel was built in 1956 and rises 200 feet from the ground between two large red rock formations. We walked up the ramp to a entrance that overlooked the mountains. Various chatter of languages floated in the air. The sun beamed down but a cool awning of shade was at the entrance of the chapel. Entering the shade there is a small rock fountain next to the door and a hum of silence. You walk in and all you see is Jesus' eyes. The contrast of bright sun outside of the chapel and the low light of the inside pulls the white of Jesus' eyes so that seem like they are beaming. Jesus hung on a 90 foot cross in front of a kaleidoscope stained glass window over looking the mountainside. I wanted to collapse at his feet, instead we look for a open seat in a room of tourists. We find a seat in the back but I want to move closer. I go up to alter and look at his face, a face that didn't feel like it had the look of shame it once gave me. A seat opened up in the front pew next to the rows of candles for prayer.
I went to light one and looked for money to pay donation. I found lone twenty dollar bill and without blinking donated it. I lit a candle, drew a sun in the palm of my hand with the ash of the stick, and prayed. After my prayer I looked over to see a life size marble baby Jesus in a red velvet bed. The sign said you could touch, so I did without hesitation. I touched his smooth marble head, held his small marble hand, and felt like a mother for a moment. I look down seeing that I am standing on a sculpture of bare feet imprinted on the floor. I wanted to take my shoes off and put my feet in the imprint but instead I touch them with my hands.
I look up to the alter gleaming with sun and I see a Native American laying on the floor of the alter. Laying still on the floor of the alter the sun shined on them and their eyes were closed. An Asian sat in the row behind me and started to sign breaking the slience. They sang a Christian song of praise I knew all the words to and also sang Hare Krishna. I began to sing with them, my voice was softer and theirs carried through lifting my voice up. I didn't look at them, they didn't look at me, I just joined them. Our voices echoed in vibrance, the only two in the chapel singing. I cried and when I was finished, I looked at Jesus' face, his eyes now looked kinder as my eyes were now adjusted to the light.
This post content was created by Giuliana Cascardo. All visuals are self taken or created, all writing is original aside from any statistical or historic information which is sourced by external links. Any photos that are not taken or created by Giuliana Cascardo are sourced in photo discription. Nothing in this post is affiliated with any sponsors or commercial work.