Mayor of Cali and living forces join hands to carry out the restoration process of La Ermita.
Built around 1942 and vigilant of everyday life in Cali, La Ermita has a history that dates back to the 17th century, when it was erected nobly in straw in dedication to Our Lady of Solitude.
The echoes of history show that in 1925, due to an earthquake, the simple Catholic temple collapsed to make way for a church with similar features -although smaller- to the German cathedral of Ulm.
Likewise, the bibliography and some voices state that the erection of the new religious center is due to the campaign undertaken by the citizen Micaela Castro Borrero, who managed to gather the funds for the construction. Of the relics from the end of the 17th century, only the image of the Señor de la Caña survived.
About the images that the parishioners can appreciate, the nun Andrea María del Amor, belonging to the Eucharistic Communicators of the Heavenly Father, pointed out: “when the faithful enter, in the left sector they find Our Lord of the Caña, to whom they make your sentences”.
(Also read: Committee was formed to safeguard the iconic La Ermita church)
And he continued: “Going deeper, we can see in the main tabernacle, in the central part, Our Lady of Sorrows, to whom the chapel is consecrated. In addition to this, in the upper part of the temple, a series of brightly colored stained glass windows can be seen through which the light of God enters through images of saints such as San Martín de Porres, San Pablo, San Pedro and San Agustín, who they represent our spirituality.”
Today, without the opulence of other times but with the nobility of being an icon of this Cali that embraces its history, the District Government and several hands of the active forces seek its restoration.
For the architect Samuel Castro González, a graduate of the Universidad del Valle and who has been a citizen and heritage overseer in this restoration process, the beautiful relic of the ‘sky branch’ receives, among blessings, the crusade undertaken to safeguard it as an urban treasure :
He recalled that in the restoration of the church, after being affected by the 1925 earthquake, the Caldas neighborhood participated and stressed that a Verdin clock, built in France by Armand Blanchet in 1936, is also part of the temple. Westmister, it must be adapted so that the Ave Maria can be heard again, sounds of London’s Big Ben and touches for marriages, religious festivals and funeral ceremonies.
David Troncoso, a Panamanian priest and tourist who visited La Ermita with a group of his compatriots, stated: “it is essential and important that the church be in the middle of the road; a time for God.
For the architect Samuel Castro González, the importance of La Ermita lies in the image that people have of this icon. “It is a very visible building that identifies the day-to-day of the city, being part of its urban memory, since it is located in one of the busiest areas such as Calle 13 with Bulevar de la Avenida Colombia, an aspect that makes it stand out in the very center of Cali”, he considered.
The intervention project is expected to forgive the sins of deterioration, which affects 35% of its structure, allowing La Ermita, on its 80th anniversary, to show itself radiant with the functioning of its clocks and the tolling of the six bronze bells. , as God commands.
Andrea María del Amor – Eucharistic Communicators Community of the Heavenly Father
Samuel Castro González – Architect
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Publication date 09/13/2022
Last modified 09/13/2022