According to Wikipedia: The Church of the Gesù (Italian: Chiesa del Gesù) is the mother church of the Society of Jesus, a Roman Catholic religious order also known as the Jesuits (Pope Francis is a Jesuit – my addition). Officially named Chiesa del Santissimo Nome di Gesù all’Argentina (English: Church of the Most Holy Name of Jesus at the “Argentina”), its façade is “the first truly baroque façade”, introducing the baroque style into architecture. The church served as model for innumerable Jesuit churches all over the world, especially in the Americas. The Church of the Gesù is located in the Piazza del Gesù in Rome.

Two years ago, my husband and I took a trip to Italy which included several days in Rome.
I kept entries of our travels on our online travel blog (travelpod). The following is an excerpt from May 3, 2011. It reads:

We stopped for a quick gelato (our daily requirement), taking pictures at every turn and corner and found ourselves (by accident) on the steps of the Gesu Church, the center of the Jesuit order. When we entered, our jaws dropped. Within the richly decorated Baroque church, the fresco, “The Triumph of the Name of Jesus” on the ceiling was incredible. And then we discovered that St. Ignatius Loyola and St. Francis Xavier were buried there. We spent some time in prayer before each tomb, specifically remembering our son Gregory who has a special devotion to St. Ignatius. As Greg read our Rick Steve’s guidebook about the church, he found that at 5:30 pm, a painting of St. Ignatius rolls down and reveals an incredible statue of the saint. It was 5:10 and we decided to wait. We were not disappointed. Music began to play, and after several minutes of narration and choral interludes, the painting was lowered and we were awed. The large silver statue was ornately covered with jewels and sparkled under the spotlight. What an unexpected treat.

The following pictures were taken with my little Canon PowerShot SX210 IS. I edited the pictures for more contrast and color.

Baroque façade
As you enter Chiesa del Gesu
As you enter Chiesa del Gesu
Ceiling fresco, Triumph of the Name of Jesus
Ceiling fresco, Triumph of the Name of Jesus.  All the angels look like statues but they are painted too.
Interior Dome
The symbol for the Jesuits, “the Holy Name of Jesus”.

This is a response to the Weekly Photo Challenge: Monument. I have been wanting to share some highlights from our trip to Italy (and Germany and Switzerland) so when I found out about this challenge, I was happy to revisit my pictures from the trip.