Venice and its islands are home to 141 churches, including deconsecrated and non-Catholic churches, though the vast majority are consecrated and Catholic. It was never in the itinerary to see every church on this holiday; in fact, that’s not even possible, as some of them are only open for Sunday services. In doing the travel research, though, I discovered that the kind folks who run Venice’s Chorus Association offer what is known as the Chorus Pass. While it is hit-or-miss with the other 125 for entry, for a mere €12 one is granted access to 16 of the city’s prettiest and most art-filled churches, with proceeds going to help restore all of Venice’s houses of worship.
With the Chorus Pass one also receives what we deemed the second-finest street map of Venice to ever exist, the first being the Marco Polo Venice map we brought with us. The Chorus Pass map includes not only the Top 16, but every church, palazzo, and museum of interest that Venice has to offer. Genius.
But aren’t all the churches essentially the same? Oh, no they are not. By the second or third church visit (we did not see all of the Top 16, either) even Anna Grace was getting into the spirit of it, if you’ll pardon the pun. All told, I think we viewed five versions of The Last Supper; a presentation of women kidnapped by pirates to noblemen; faithful dogs waiting for their masters; and even a fresco of the 14 Stations of the Cross (there’s a Monty Python quip in there somewhere). Not to mention a pagan pyramidal crypt.
Photography rules were a little lax. “No Photos” was the general guideline, but a blind eye was usually turned to those snapping away without the use of flash. That said, I hope you enjoy this brief tour through 1.000 years of faith, art, and history. We certainly did.