St. Mary Magdalene Church ~ Woodstock

Much history of the church and of the photos I’m sharing can be found here.

The church was built during the reign of Henry II (1154-1189) as a chapel of ease so that local people, including members of the royal court, did not have to travel to the parish church at nearby Bladon to worship.

Later in the 13th century the church was enlarged and a bell tower and burial ground were added.

The only parts of that original chapel of ease to survive are a section on the south nave wall and a beautifully carved round-headed 12th-century doorway set into the south wall. The doorway is carved with two orders of traditional Norman zig-zag pattern separated by moulding. Unusually, the zig-zag carving extends all the way to the ground.

The above photo is of that ancient door from the outside and below from the inside.

Separating the church porch from the nave is a wooden screen, carved in the early 16th century. The screen was originally installed in the traditional place between the nave and chancel, but was moved to the west end of the nave in 1999 to make the high altar more easily visible.

This flying eagle lectern is like several others I’ve seen in churches in Great Britain. I think they are so cool.

The superb column capitals on the south nave arcade are one of the church’s best features. There are 23 carved heads incorporated into the design of the capitals, interspersed with foliage.

Each capital is different and the heads are all unique.

All of the stained glass is Victorian.

The angels at the top have banners that read: Let us love one another ~ For love is of God.

Jesus saith unto her, Thy brother shall rise again.

Over 200 kneelers are in this church of which I photographed quite a few. That will be another post.

Inching along to complete posts about our last few days in Oxfordshire in September of 2022.

Back to the present here in the U. S. of A. Yesterday, Friday February 10th, we traveled to Spokane to do some shopping at places we do not have here in Colville. After our stops at Home Depot, T.J.Maxx, Costco, Hobby Lobby, and Trader Joe’s we tried a new to us Chinese Restaurant called the Red Dragon. We had the best Hot and Sour soup and some good potstickers. After we ate we made one more stop at Fred Meyer before we headed home.

Happy Saturday to you.

Opening Doors ~ Day Five


This is Day Five of Opening Doors Photo Challenge. Thanks so much Jientje for this fun idea and being the hostess for it. My eyes have been opened to seeing so many great doors and doorways. We have a great old church that sits above Ventura Blvd. in Old Town Camarillo where you can hear the bells peal three times a day. I decided to stop and see it’s doors up close.


It was July 1, 1913. St. Mary Magdalen had been officially established. For several years the brothers, Adolfo and Juan Camarillo, had planned to build a more permanent structure to replace the overcrowded one-room wooden family chapel atop the hill along El Camino Real. Across Ventura Boulevard from the chapel stood a drug store with a high wooden billboard-like front that now stands vacant — the former Southern Pacific railroad depot that had given Camarillo its name. A few blocks westward near the middle of what is now Arneil Road, was the Pleasant Valley Baptist Church that was built in 1890. (This must be what is now Evangelical Free Church of Camarillo) A new hilltop church of ample proportions would set the tone of the growing city for decades to come and serve as a fitting tribute to God, the city, and the first family.

One day while Juan was traveling near his father’s birthplace of Mexico City, a mission-style church caught his eye. He commissioned architect Albert C. Martin to design the Camarillo church along the same lines. Juan built the church in honor of his father, Don Juan Camarillo, and his mother, Martina Hernandez. It was named for Juan and Adolfo’s oldest sister, Magdalena.

On July 4, 1914, the magnificent chapel was dedicated by the Bishop at an impressive ceremony attended by most of the townspeople coming in flag-draped cars.

From it’s hill top position, the chapel’s belfry tower, looking like a multi-tiered wedding cake, was the dominate landmark in Pleasant Valley. It was from this tower, that the bell tolled thrice daily calling the faithful to the Angelus. This was a photo I took earlier in the year.


During the past 76 years, the rugged hilltop chapel has withstood the ravages of earthquakes, fire, and time.  Mrs. Gloria Petit Longo recalls the effects of a smoke damaged interior resulting from a fire. It occurred a few days before her wedding and the ceremony was held under paint scaffolding.

For more Opening Doors Photos visit Jientje at Heaven in Belgium.

Photobucket is holding all my photos that I posted on my blog from 2007-2015 hostage and replaced them with big black and grey boxes with threats. So discouraging…as I’m slowly trying to clean up thousands of posts!