A Magical Treasure Hunt
The time spent in Sintra and our biking pilgrimage through Portugal opened me up to a different perspective on Mary. Different and sometimes hidden stories, symbols and keys revealed themselves, that led me on a journey that embraces the Divine Feminine and Mary. Well, I should say the Marys. As there have been so many Marys that introduced themselves to me.
Our journey in Portugal started off with being neighbours of Mary, as we found ourselves living right next door to a church dedicated to her. 'Igreja de Santa Maria' dates back from the time of Portugal's foundation as a nation. Dom Afonso Henriques, the first king of Portugal, conquered Sintra from the Moors in 1147. At that time, a small chapel was built here. It is sparkly decorated, with an ancient plaque dedicated to Inanna/Ishtar.
Symbolic Keys leading to Mary
While browsing an antique store in Sintra, I came across a collection of large antique bronze keys. I asked the owner what these were about and she explained these were from the 1800s. Some had quite elaborate decorations and one of them in particular stood out. The key with the coat of arms of Coimbra, which featured a crowned woman in a cup, surrounded by a serpent/dragon and a lion. On the back it had 7 towers.
Since the key had a price tag of 198 Euro, I left it where it was but for weeks it had a magical pull (it still does actually), I marvelled at it, curious about its meaning. I started to see more and more keys around Sintra, when I entered the Church of Sao Pedro (Saint Peter), the whole blue tiled wall was covered in stories relating to the keys of heaven, lined with Marys along the wall:
So keys... it told me to pay attention to symbols and signs and to be curious about the crowned lady in the cup.
Flowers guiding the way
Marys in order of Appearance
So many Marys and a few female Saints!! Click on image or scroll through to see full images and descriptions.
A lot of Marys indeed... I am curious where else we will be led, whether we can continue our pilgrimage into Spain, and perhaps into Southern France, exploring more caves, or perhaps that is not in the Divine Cards at this time. Time will tell.
To each of these Marys I brought prayers for our family, for our planet and for friends who had requested so. I will continue to do so when I can. If you'd like to be specifically included, just send me a message.
If you read this far, wow... I'm impressed. Many blessings to you.
Our Mary Biking Pilgrimage so far