Monthly Archives: February 2014

Valentines Day and what do you know about it?

Starting as a liturgical celebration, St. Valentine’s Day came from one of early Christian saints named Valentinus. Several torture histories were made for the various Valentines that belonged to February 14, and added to later martyrologies. A popular saint writing account of Saint Valentine of Rome states that he was taken as a prisioner for performing weddings for soldiers who were forbidden to marry and for ministering to Christians, who were persecuted under the Roman Empire. Legend says, while he was in prison, he healed the daughter of his jailer, Asterius. An embellishment to this story states that before his execution he wrote her a letter signed “Your Valentine” as a farewell.


Bet You Didn’t Know: Valentine’s Day“, History Chanel’s short video on things you are not supposed to know, here it is for you:

Today, Saint Valentine’s Day is an official holiday in the Anglican Communion, as well as in the Lutheran Church. The Eastern Orthodox Church also celebrates Saint Valentine’s Day, albeit on July 6 and July 30, the former date in honor of the Roman presbyter Saint Valentine, and the latter date in honor of Hieromartyr Valentine, the Bishop of Interamna (modern Terni). In Brazil, the Dia de São Valentim is recognized on June 12.

Best way of sharing our best wishes to you, is by sharing this picture taken by us on last Friday, February 14th!! Here some ideas on what to do on your V-Day celebration.

What do you know about Sagrada Familia?

Catalonian most well known and iconic Roman Catholic church in Barcelona, nothing less than Gaudi’s Sagrada Familia. Combining Gothic and curvilinear Art Nouveau forms, it started to get constructed in 1882. Even though not yet completed, the church is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and in November 2010 Pope Benedict XVI consecrated and proclaimed it a minor basilica, as distinct from a cathedral which must be the seat of a bishop.

Zagrada_familia    (CC BY-SA 2.5 Собор Саграда Фамилия)
 It was designed by Catalan architect Antoni Gaudí (1852–1926). 

The Basilica of the Sagrada Família was the inspiration of a Catalan bookseller, Josep Maria Bocabella, founder of the Spiritual Association of Devotees of St. Joseph.

Incredible but thruth, Antoni Gaudí began work on the church in 1883 but was not appointed Architect Director until 1884, and it wasn't the original architect in the first place.

Newly constructed stonework at the Basilica is clearly visible compared to the darker older sections, touched and aged by the weather.
Taken in consideration the long time it will take to construct the church, Gaudí had said: “My client is not in a hurry.” When Gaudí died in 1926, the basilica was between 15 and 25 percent complete. After Gaudí’s death, the work continued under the direction of Domenec Sugrañes i Gras until stopped again by the Spanish Civil War in 1936.

 (CC BY-SA 3.0 Rp22)

One projection anticipates construction completion around 2026, the centennial of Gaudí’s death—while the project’s information leaflet estimates a completion date in 2028.

In 2008, some very well known Catalan architects advocated a stop to construction, to respect the original designs by Gaudí, which, although they were not exhaustive and were partially destroyed during civil war by Catalan anarchists, but  have been partially reconstructed in recent years.

Detail_of_bronze_door_of_the_Sagrada_Família(CC Christophe MOUSTIER)


Since 2013, AVE high-speed trains have passed near the Sagrada Família through an underground tunnel that runs beneath the centre of Barcelona. 

Service through the tunnel was inaugurated on 8 January 2013. Track in the tunnel makes use of a system by EdilonSedra in which the rails are embedded in an elastic material to dampen vibrations. No damage to the Sagrada Família has been reported to date.


Art critic Rainer Zerbs describes Sagrada Família as, “It is probably impossible to find a church building anything like it in the entire history of art” and Paul Goldberger opinion: “The most extraordinary personal interpretation of Gothic architecture since the Middle Ages.”

Sagrada Familia
(CC BY-SA 2.5 Marek Holub)

We hope you will find this short post useful and helpful to have a little more knowledge of this amazing edification in the center of Barcelona! And of course, don’t forget if you need any help with tours, transport passes or anything regarding Barcelona, please click HERE!