Last May, the new new parish church of Santa Olaya in Gijón where a new carving of the patron saint, carved and polychromed in our workshops, a silver tabernacle and two antique images have been installed. on which the restoration department has intervened.
SAINT OLAYA, THE GIRL MARTYR WHO CONFRONTED THE AUTHORITIES TO DEFEND CHRISTIANS
From our workshops we have been involved in the design and execution of the carving of Saint Olaya (or Saint Eulalia), a young Christian girl of 12 years old who suffered martyrdom after denouncing to the governor Dacian the injustice of a new decree that prohibited Christians to worship Jesus Christ. and forced them to worship pagan idols.
Although her parents tried to protect her by taking her away from the city, the girl went all the way to Mérida to confront the governor, who at first tried to dissuade her. Olaya refused to comply with his wishes to worship other gods; he is said to have told her: "The God of heaven alone I worship; to Him alone will I offer sacrifices and burn incense. And to no one else.". The governor then had her tortured to death.
Her story spread rapidly throughout the Empire, strengthening the faith of Christians and the pilgrimage of many to the place of her martyrdom, Merida, where she holds the title of perpetual mayoress. Her remains rest in the cathedral of Oviedo.
The saint is represented in the carving with the palm of martyrdom in one hand and a small stove in the other, her traditional attributes. Her face, typical of a girl on her way to becoming a woman, reflects serenity and a maturity unbecoming of a girl of her age. The carving has been made in wood and polychromed with a glazed finish.
"WE ARE FROM THE PARISH OF SANTA OLAYA AND WE NEED A CHURCH".
Archbishop Sanz Montes told the parishioners during the inauguration blessing that eight years ago, after the first Mass following his appointment, several people who belonged to the parish, then located in a first floor of Natahoyo, approached him to tell him that the premises were becoming too small and that they needed a new church. with the capacity to serve the more than 10,000 inhabitants of the area. Last May that request became a reality with the opening of the doors of the new church designed by the young architect Jose María Cabezudo, who completed a project that had been started by his father, who died in 2015.
The new church is a modern building located in a park near the Santa Olaya Sports Club and consists, in addition to the main nave, of a choir, a smaller chapel, three parish offices, a meeting room and four multipurpose rooms. where Caritas and other parish activities can be carried out.
THE NEW BUILDING FOR THE FAITHFUL OF SANTA OLAYA
The new temple, in a modern style, was built in white exposed brick and white wood in the roof structure with a large cross that protrudes above the building with a particular luminous effect. Inside, sobriety and natural light penetrates through the numerous slit windows on the facade and roof. The interior of the church is simple and sober: only three images, several wooden elements and six candelabras anchored to the wall.