Church of Santa Maria Magdalena

This temple is located on the way out to Montánchez. It is shown as a fairly compact structure. The nave and the tower form a single body to give a solidity that stands the test of time.

VILLAGE
CHURCH
10188
927 313 702
Exteriors
ayuntamiento@botija.es
HORARIO EUCARISTIA

The tower has the size of a fortress and the nave seems to be attached to it, using it as a strong support, while giving the church an original and unmistakable silhouette. Its pyramid-shaped top only makes its figure even more stylized.
The origins are uncertain, the most remote trace is found in the dedication of the patron saint of the church: the Magdalena. It is not usual to find groups of followers of this figure we have to go back to the XII or XIII century, with the successive Military Orders of Cavalry that had a relevant role in the area of influence of Botija. Among them are the Knights of Santiago de la Espada, who will be the protagonists of history from the reconquest in the thirteenth century until the end of the lordships in the nineteenth century.
At the time of the discovery of America it already existed and at that time, the image of Mary Magdalene was still preserved presiding over the temple.
From the outside the apse also stands out, from the outside it appears as a counterweight to the height of the tower. One can already imagine the great dome that must be inside. the buttresses of the walls segment the nave into bays.
There are 3 doors, the one at the foot, which in principle should be the oldest seems to be the most modern. The north door is currently the most used and the one that gives us the most antiquity. consists of a semicircular arch, framed with a simple alfiz. Today a large inscription along the entire arch invites us to pray: DOMUS DEI DOMUS ORATIONIS VOCATUR. the one on the opposite side is walled and has a lowered arch.
A cross engraved on one of the sides of this doorway adds a point of mystery to the temple, there is also a carved cross with stairs inserted in one of the side walls. There are also some inscriptions on the large slabs that line the entrance.
The interior seduces us as soon as we pass through the door. The stonework is visible, which has further enhanced its medieval character. It is a pity that we can not enjoy the original carvings and some paintings that have been disappearing throughout history.
The nave is divided into two sections. the ceiling is a large barrel vault on this side. The hemispherical dome of the main chapel, which displays a beautiful architecture, starts on large pilasters up to the arches that support the vault. This dome has paintings of God the Father, Jesus with the Cross and the Holy Spirit accompanied on the sides by Angels, dating from 1936.
The original main altarpiece has disappeared, in its place we see another one that was on one of the sides. the present one is from the 16th century and was made in the workshops of Trujillo. It underwent major renovations that changed its appearance as early as 1733, another in 1917 and the last time it was restored in 2007.
An image of the Immaculate Conception presides in the altarpiece, which is modern and there is no evidence of the original dedication. The rest of the decoration is based on paintings: St. John and St. Mark at the base, then the Annunciation and the Nativity, and above reliefs of St. Eulalia and St. Catherine of Alexandria.

Scattered throughout the temple we have some other sculptures such as San Sebastian, San Antonio. There is a painting of the souls and the Virgin and St. John the Baptist with the Trinity, year 1892. In other neo-Gothic altarpieces we have a Virgin of Solitude; all these are from the 18th century, as well as another Virgin with child. On one of the sides there is also a huge canvas with the representation of the crucified. Another one represents the penitent Magdalena, with crystal eyes and carrying a cross and a skull, this carving is from the XVII century.
In the sacristy there is a crucifix of the XVI century, and an interesting chalice with the Cross of Santiago, work of 1677.
The choir of the church is also noteworthy, it rises over a beautiful barrel vault. At the foot of the temple we also have the baptismal font, simple, of a single granite stone.