El Buen Pastor, a Dominican recoleta colonial church and convent - complete with museum, thrives side by side with the National Ministry of Defense on Avenida Maldonado y Recoleta. Located at the Recoleta Metro trolley stop, this convent claims Canadian nuns for its founding.
The huge park belongs to the Ministry of Defense where the military constantly watches, and seems to exist solely as a guardian angel to this awesome Church of The Good Shepherd.
Hidden behind the wall, its colonial dome emerges. Would it not be for the military, this "red zone" church area could present danger. I hop on the Metro trolley at Iglesia Santo Domingo going south, and in two stops, I'm there...right next to El Panecillo.
The church and museum open for touring together Mon., Wed. or Thurs. from 11:00AM to 1:PM or 3:00PM to 5:00PM for a total cost of $1.50.
The Mother Superior couldn't be there to explain everything when I toured. The receptionist cheerfully guided me through everything, including up some creepy, squeaky stairs and down, where antique treasures are displayed.
It seems this museum doesn't receive the attention of the others, so I wasn't sure anyone would come out. I rang. The phone number of the nun is posted as 228-0616. Ringing her would have been my next move, but it proved not necessary.
This recoleta dates way back to 1600, constructed under the auspices of Fray Pedro Bedon, Dominican. President Garcia Moreno in 1871 formally installed this convent for missionary work in Ecuador. It carries on as a reliquary of mercy. Guardian Angel School opened its doors here in 1885.
Even though its out of the way, El Buen Pastor Colonial Church and Recoleta with museum provides yet another piece of the puzzle that serves to complete the whole picture of the fascinating history of Quito.
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