spoted in the Cathedral of St. Mary (Dom St. Marien) in Freiberg/Saxony - "the silver city's landmark and the centre of lived faith for the Protestant congregation. Built in 1180 as a romanesque basilica the cathedral is a cultural monument nowadays. Since the beginning of the 16th century the late-gothic building defines the skyline of the city of Freiberg."
Going inside, you immediately notice the richly decorated vaults. "These works of art served not only to inspire the worshippers — they were also often cleverly used to hide trap doors in the cathedral ceiling to the very tops of their roofs. And this is why:
During the Pentecost worship service, some hapless servants would be drafted to scramble up on the rooftop. They would be listening in to the service below, and the appropriate moment during worship, they would release live doves through these holes. From out of the painted skies and clouds on the cathedral ceiling, these symbols of a vitally present Holy Spirit would swoop and dive down on the people below. At the same moment, the choirboys would run around with streamers making whooshing and drumming sounds, like a holy windstorm. But it didn't end there: as the doves were flying and the winds were rushing, the ceiling holes would open up once more — as bushels upon bushels of rose petals where showered down. And red, flickering bits of flowers like tongues of flame would gently fall upon the awe-struck congregation. Wow...! Who needs high-tech laser shows and holographic projections if you have this? These special openings to the sky in medieval churches had a name; they were called “Holy Spirit holes.”" Here you see such a Holy Spirit hole/Himmelsloch in German marked by its intense heavenly blue colour.
Holy Ghost holes can still be seen today in European churches such as Canterbury Cathedral.
"Looking up" is the title of a short series this week
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