Monday, March 18, 2013

LDS Temple Worship VS The San Vitale Chapel Mural (Similarities)

This cathedral was built in the 6th century A.D., commencing between 534 and 538, with the addition of the mosaics during 671 to 677.2 The building was named for Apollinaris, a Bishop who reportedly came with the Apostle Peter from Antioch to Rome, and "Peter, having laid hands on him, sent him to preach in the east of Italy."

The Basilica's location is attributed to the spot where Apollinaris was martyred in Ravenna, and his body was subsequently buried under the high altar.3

Interior - Basilica of St. Apollinare in Classe (Ravenna, Italy)4

The building is characterized as having Roman and Byzantine influences (more so the latter), and is decorated with marble and mosaic.5 The church was built under the direction of Emperor Justinian and may have been designed by Julianus Argentarius.6 Included in the numerous mosaics throughout the basilica, is the depiction of Melchizedek, Abel, and Abraham (with Isaac) presenting offerings at an altar before the veil of the temple.

This scenario is generally referred to as representing the Eucharist, which symbolizes the sacrifice of the Savior.7 As noted above, the "so-called seal of Melchizedek" is depicted on the altar cloth.

Mosaic of Melchizedek, Abel, and Abraham - Basilica of St. Apollinare in Classe8

For additional pictures of this Basilica (in color), see here and here.

St. Vitale

The Basilica of St. Vitale was named after St. Vitalis, a soldier in Nero's army who had been converted to the gospel by the preaching of Peter. "He was condemned to be buried alive for having taken up and cared for the body of a Christian martyr."9 Hence, this cathedral was erected on the spot where St. Vitalis was buried.

A sketch of the building is below.

For the official site of the San Vitale Chapel, click or copy:

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