Monday, March 23, 2015

The Climb A Pilgrimage

See the church at the top of the hill.  Last Spring Lee took this picture and entered it into a local photo contest.  There were over one thousand six hundred entries.  Only one hundred were chosen for the show.  We made it into the one hundred but did not even get an honorable mention. 
The limestone church at the pinnacle of the hill was built in 1859, just before the American Civil War.
Now these pictures were taken on Sunday the 22nd.
The Immaculata Church has served since 1860 as a pilgrimage church, where on Good Friday the faithful ascend 85 steps to the church's front door from the neighborhood below while praying the Rosery. An additional 65 steps start at the base of Mt. Adams, with a pedestrian bridge over Columbia Parkway connecting the two paths. The steps were originally made of wood, but in 1911, the City of Cincinnati helped the church build concrete steps.
We are not of the Catholic Faith but come climb the steps with us.
At 12:01 A.M. each year on Good Friday, something extraordinary happens. People begin to gather at the base of the steps leading up to Holy Cross-Immaculata Church, preparing to take part in the tradition known locally as “Praying the Steps.”
The earliest mention of the pilgrimage in Immaculata Church records is 1873.
Higher and higher you climb.
Finally you reach the top. Look how high we climbed.
These plaques show pictures of down below how it looked and of the faithful climbing the stairs.
The Mt. Adams Steps.
We have reached the pinnacle.  What a beautiful skyline Cincinnati has.
The interior murals were painted by Johann Schmitt.
Well here I, Sweet William The Scot, am at the front door. 
Let me hold the inner door open for you.  And remember to be quiet.
Lee always tells me to remember to be quiet!
The Mt. Adams Preservation Association raised enough funds to commission the restoration of seven paintings by Johann Schmitt. The paintings were mounted over the main altar and side altars between 1863 and 1870.
$44,000 was raised to have the windows reinforced, enlarged with an 18-inch ring of additional glass, and ultimately set into the Holy Cross-Immaculata wall behind a layer of strong, protective glass.
I believe there are twelve old stain glass windows in all.
And between the windows hang the wonderful wood carved painted murals.
Over the door where we came in is the old pipe organ in the balcony.
One last look at the magnificent side alter before we leave.
We can see our car parked down below.  This community and church has very few places to park for most of the streets are narrow one way and the home owners park in front of their homes.
The hike down is a lot easier than the hike up!
Truly this is a buns of steel hike.
In other years it has taken us about one hour.
This year Lee had to stop several times to rest and it was a four hour walkabout.
 So as we go down the steps we are wishing all of our friends, whatever their faith a wonderful Spring.
Thanks for being a friend
Traveling down the road and back again
Your heart is true and your a friend of mine
Signing Off 
Sweet William The Scot


  1. Thank you Lee and Sweet William for sharing these pictures and memories wif had to work very hard to do that....that church is beautiful. hugs from all of us....stella rose and moma

  2. OK, so you didn't even get an honorable mention. Did you get a dishonorable mention at least? There's nothing worse than being ignored.

  3. Your pictures and the talk about the pictures made me feel as if I as walking the steps with you. My mom is out of breath with that climb.

  4. What a beautiful Church inside and out. Thanks for sharing it's history. The praying steps, I like it.

    Aroo to you,

  5. Well, this is one of the most beautiful places you have ever shown us in your fair Nati city, Sir William. I think it is wonderful how the tradition of climbing the steps and saying your prayers has remained. And remember, just because it is a Catholic church doesn't mean that other prayers along those steps will not be heard! I am glad you and your Lee went out and took us along on your walkabout.
    Your good pal,

  6. what? not honorable mention for such a wonderful photo? Ok, here is mine: I love it and your Lee took that photo from a fabulous place where all things get a special view. 4 paws and 87 greenies for a SUPER photo and for a tour to your Holy Cross Immaculata Church.
    easy rider

  7. That is a fabulous Church and thank you for sharing. LOL we can believe the hike down was a lot easier. Have a marvellous Monday.
    Best wishes Molly

  8. WE think your picture is Grrreat... butt don't feel sad about not winning....beclaws 1,500 did not even get Chosen and YOU DID...
    OMD we Loved your BEARD... with Too Much PAWduct in it... We Laughted and Laughed ...
    We don't think we could make even HALF way up those steps... You did GRRRREAT... to make it to the Top.

  9. Wow, what a beautiful church! Thanks for the tour!

    Your GUY Pals,

    Murphy & Stanley

  10. Well that's a lot of steps but well worth it! What a beautiful church and spectacular view. Well done Lee for making it round!!!!!
    Loves and licky kisses
    Princess Leah xxx

  11. Thank you for this beautiful tour of the church and showing us your beautiful photos, we love all of them
    Mr Bailey, Hazel & Mabel

  12. wow! we never knew there were so many cool things to see in Cincinnati! We are so thankful for your tours, Sweet William!

    Edgar and his mum

  13. WOW!! Thats a big climb but very beautiful inside. Thanks for showing us Sweet William.


  14. What a beautiful church. Thank you for taking us on your adventure, William.

    Love ya lots♥
    Mitch and Molly

  15. Another great report. Who knew your were such a mountaineer Sweet William? Buns of steel indeed.
    Toodle pip!
    PS Of course Lee's wonderful photo of the spectacular church should have received an honourable mention. What were they thinking!?!?

  16. First of all, Congrats on getting into the 100! We think you should have received an honourable mention.

    We definitely don't have buns of steel, so we'd be languishing at the bottom. Thanks for the tour.

  17. Great pictures! And what a beautiful church.

  18. Crikey ..... you made it into the top 100 out of all those entries. That's an honourable mention in my eyes!!! What a beautiful photo. So well captured.
    What a beautiful church. You both did well with the climb. Thanks for sharing the pictures.

  19. That is quite a climb to get to church. We hope there is a shorter route for those less able bodied.

  20. What a beautiful journey! This seems like something we'd see in SCOTland...not here. I bet the views are breathtaking. Thank you for sharing it with us!!!

  21. What an arooootiful church. Mom is of the Catholic faith, so she found this post very interesting.
    BIG licks,
    Wally & Sammy

  22. Neither my peep nor I have been to Church, so we don't know much about that sort of stuff, but she likes history and old buildings, and art, so we reckon the windows are very pretty!

  23. That is so beautiful!! I love when you share your journeys.

    Loveys Sasha

  24. You climbed all those steps??? Wow. Looks like a beautiful place and I love stained glass!

    Your mom's picture is beautiful and making it into the top 100 is very impressive!

  25. A BIG congratulations to you Sweet William as you are Ranger's Beard winner. My heart voted for you even though I voted for someone who did not have a vote.

  26. We are extremely impressed with you and Lee after all the medical problems she has had. This is an accomplishment big time. Your church is beyond beautiful, thank you for sharing it.

    1. Yes we did not think we could make it. A friend went with us just in case Lee fell. We are both taking it easy this week. Lee says those buns of steel feel like rubber now.

  27. Fanks fur sharin' yer beeyoutifull photos wiff us and wow, whut a climb! I's real proud of boff of ya, bein' able to git all da way to da top like dat! And whut a view! And whut a purdy church... we luvs when ya shows us yer town...