Gallus Glasgow R: Religious buildings

St Mungo Museum of Religious Life and Art was the first in the world to cover all major world religions together. It sits next to Glasgow Cathedral (1197) and superficially looks almost as old, but it dates from the late 1980s. The Scottish baronial style was deliberately chosen to emulate the Bishop’s Palace which used to sit on the same site. In the images below, the third building you can see is the Royal Infirmary.

Some details from the museum:

The Cathedral is Church of Scotland and there are, of course, many more Christian denominations represented in Glasgow as well as buildings for other world religions. For example, Glasgow Central Mosque:

Glasgow Central Mosque

Garnethill Synagogue:

By RonAlmog, (Flickr page) (Flickr) CC BY 2.5 (, via Wikimedia Commons
By RonAlmog, (Flickr page) (Flickr) CC BY 2.5 (, via Wikimedia Commons

And Gurdwara Guru Granth Sahib:

Gurdwara Guru Granth Sahib

Most religious buildings which have been mentioned in the Challenge so far have been converted to other uses. This is a small, and by no means comprehensive, selection of those which still fulfil their original purpose.

Tomorrow in S we’ll look at some art – but not in a gallery.


30 thoughts on “Gallus Glasgow R: Religious buildings

  1. njmagas April 21, 2015 / 13:13

    Some of the prettiest buildings are religious buildings. This post actually reminded me of a trip I took for 8th grade humanities. We went around Vancouver to four different places of worship and took part in different ceremonies and meals all day. It was a great experience.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Anabel Marsh April 21, 2015 / 13:15

      That sounds good! I have been in both the mosque and the synagogue pictured but not the gurdwara. A large, new one is being built quite near us so I’m hoping they’ll have an open day.


      • njmagas April 21, 2015 / 13:20

        Oooo~! I like religious buildings for the bit of peace and quiet they offer in the middle of a noisy city. Having those that are generous with food is also nice. 😛

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Donna April 21, 2015 / 18:10

    I’m always amazed by the architecture and art of historic religious buildings. I’m impressed by the Museum of Religious Life and Art. I wasn’t aware there were any museums, other than very large comprehensive art museums, that covered all religions.


    • Anabel Marsh April 21, 2015 / 20:39

      It is a lovely museum – has some interesting changing exhibitions too.


  3. clicksclan April 21, 2015 / 20:49

    I love seeing different religious buildings. The only one I’ve actually visited was the Buddhist Centre though, and that was when I was at university.

    Cait @ Click’s Clan


    • Anabel Marsh April 21, 2015 / 20:59

      You have the advantage of me there, I haven’t been to that one.


  4. Sherri Lackey April 21, 2015 / 21:00

    This might be a strange comment, but I like the drinking fountain which says – Keep the pavement dry. Is there a story behind that? Is it for birds? Humans? Both? Is that a bell hanging above it?


    • Anabel Marsh April 21, 2015 / 21:33

      Not odd at all, I was very taken with it! It sits in a corner of the garden and there was a plaque which told you that it was made in a local iron foundry. It’s purely ornamental now, unless the birds use it, but I don’t know why it has ended up at the Museum of Religion.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. jazzfeathers April 21, 2015 / 21:01

    I really like the synagogue. I like the way it is surraounded by trees and green 🙂
    But all this buildings are nice, and it’s nice thay all ‘live’ in the same city.


  6. Nadine Feldman (@Nadine_Feldman) April 21, 2015 / 23:25

    When my husband and I took our first trip to Europe together, we loved looking at the churches. They are so amazing! We also learned that the Jews in Rome are the most continuous settlement of Jews in the world, because they were never driven out and thus have more than a 2,000-year-old history.

    So, yeah, love looking at religious buildings and learning about their history. We also saw some buildings in Edinburgh (not churches) that were built in older architectural styles to make them look older than they are…this is so cool.


    • Anabel Marsh April 21, 2015 / 23:48

      I didn’t know that about the Jews in Rome! Yes, I love looking round old churches too. There are also some great ones in North America – maybe not so old – so it works both ways.


  7. Birgit April 21, 2015 / 23:41

    I hope the cathedral is still how it should be and not converted into a pub or anything like that. I am glad the museum took a more traditional route-looks much better than modern blotches.


    • Anabel Marsh April 21, 2015 / 23:49

      No, I can assure you that the cathedral is exactly as it should be! Maybe next year (laughs uproariously) I’ll do C for Cathedral and take you inside.


  8. Silvia Writes April 22, 2015 / 05:13

    The images tell a story of their own, and you do a great job allowing them center stage. One thing about religious architecture is the amazing beauty and endurance.


    • Anabel Marsh April 22, 2015 / 07:38

      Art is a great way of learning about the different religions – physical expression of what they believe.


  9. Fee April 22, 2015 / 09:17

    I absolutely adore St Mungo’s. My Dad took me there to see Dali’s Christ of St John of the Cross in the mid nineties and it had a profound effect on me, such a powerful work. Another wonderful post 🙂


    • Anabel Marsh April 22, 2015 / 09:20

      There was a lot of controversy about hanging it there and it was eventually returned to Kelvingrove. I agree, it is wonderful.


  10. Alex Hurst April 23, 2015 / 06:12

    I agree with N J! The buildings are beautiful, and I love that the building, even though built in the 1980s, uses the old style. I wish more buildings would do so, but I think the expense would be unrealistic. It has such a lovely charm to it.


    • Anabel Marsh April 23, 2015 / 07:47

      It’s so much more in keeping with the medieval surroundings. The oldest house in Glasgow is just across the road, one for a future A to Z maybe!

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Lori L MacLaughlin May 12, 2015 / 18:12

    Lovely buildings! Some of the most beautiful buildings we saw when we were in Britain were religious buildings — Salisbury, York, and Canterbury Cathedrals are the first ones that come to mind. I like that there is such a diversity of religious buildings in Glasgow.


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