NUEVO MEXICO PROFUNDO
EXCURSIONS TO THE PRESENT PAST
A COLLABORATION OF
HISTORIC SANTA FE FOUNDATION
NEW MEXICO OFFICE OF THE STATE HISTORIAN
NEW MEXICO STATE HISTORIC PRESERVATION OFFICER,
HISTORIC PRESERVATION DIVISION
CORNERSTONES COMMUNITY PARTNERSHIPS
NEW MEXICO HERITAGE PRESERVATION ALLIANCE
SPANISH COLONIAL ARTS SOCIETY
AND PARTICIPATING PARISHES, MAYORDOMOS,
PUEBLOS, AND COMMUNITIES
TO BENEFIT THE MAINTENANCE AND RESTORATION OF NEW MEXICO’S HISTORIC CHURCHES
NUEVO MEXICO PROFUNDO was developed by Frank Graziano, Rebecca Montoya, and Pete Warzel. The participating parishes to date are Holy Family in Chimayó, St. Gertrude in Mora, Our Lady of Sorrows in Las Vegas, San Antonio de Padua in Peñasco, St. Joseph in Cerrillos, San Miguel del Vado in Ribera, and Our Lady of Guadalupe in Villanueva. The program objectives are to raise funds for historic church maintenance and restoration, to diversify the uses of the churches, to contribute to cultural enhancement and economic development in rural areas, to increase awareness of the need for historic and heritage preservation, and to provide unique cultural experiences in historic settings. Funds are raised through ticket sales and donations. The program is staffed by volunteers.
CONCERTS in the historic churches are informal gatherings that fuse the music and the ambience into unique experiences. Some of the events are candle- and lantern-lit (village churches often have no electricity), and many are in churches rarely seen by non-parishioners. The performances are generally preceded by informal church visits and by conversation with the musicians, and they are prefaced by a welcome and/or a brief talk on the church’s history and culture. Some performances coincide with feast-day celebrations.
GUIDED TOURS first departed from the Santuario de Chimayó to the historic churches in Córdova, Truchas, and Las Trampas, and these tours continue. The High Road churches are particularly outstanding for their historical and cultural importance and their conservation of santero altar screens. Tours to relatively unknown churches elsewhere in New Mexico were later developed: in Mora County, in the Picurís Pueblo / Peñasco area, and along the Pecos River. Inquiries regarding group tours are welcome.
Photo by T. Harmon Parkhurst. Church at Cordova, New Mexico, circa 1925 – 1945. Courtesy of the Palace of the Governors Photo Archives (NMHM/DCA), negative number 009037.