St. Paul’s Hill in Melaka, Malaysia

Through the Church Door

Overlooking the main historic area of Melaka is St. Paul’s Hill, an elevated position that looked over the former harbor.  Resting on the crest of the hill is St. Paul’s church, an old relic built by the dutch so that God above would hear the prayers of the colonists.  Now, the area is popular with tourists and with Malaysians taking wedding photos.  We saw at least 3 different couples doing a shoot in the short time we were there, and you can be sure that it’s one of the local photographers favorite haunts.

St. Francis Xavier without his handStanding in front of the church is a statue of St. Fancisco Xavier, a missionary that made quite an impact all throughout the area and in whose name many churches were built.  The statue is a great piece of work and looks inscredibly lifelike, except for the fact that it is noticeably missing it’s right hand.   According to the story, St. Francisco lost his hand while somewhere else in Southeast Asia, so the people who created the statue decided to keep it more true to life by sawing off his stone hand.  The hand now rests somewhere else in Asia, while the statue itself stands pround atop the hill in Melaka.

Within the church lie a number of stone tablets, written in the old latin script used by the church in days gone by.  Though the roof may be gone, these tablets stand as testimony to the history of the church.  They are ingraved with various symbols and scripture, though I would by lying if I said I could read them to you.  What is great is that they are simply placed near the walls and are there for passersby to touch and feel.  There is something powerful about touching the past in this direct way that you may not have a chance to do elsewhere.

Stone TabletStone Tablet 2An old letter

Posted on by Aaron in Aaron's Blog

Add a Comment