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First Catholic church in Granada celebrates 525th anniversary
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.- The parish of Our Lady of the Incarnation in Alhama de Granada, the first Christian church consecrated in the Kingdom of Granada by order of Queen Isabel the Catholic, is celebrating this year its 525th anniversary.

The president of the Association of Alhamian Studies, Andres Garcia Maldonado, explained that the consecration of the church, which had previously been the Mosque of Alhama, in the spring of 1482, has great historical significance, as it sparked the Battle of Granada.
 
The consecration of this church, Maldonado said, led Pope Sixtus IV, until that moment an observer of the Reconquest embarked upon by the Catholic Kings, to officially declare the Battle of Granada and to express his support of the Spanish royalty in its effort to return Spain to the Christians.

The church’s consecration was ordered by Queen Isabel the Catholic and was carried out on April 30, 1482, by Cardinal Pedro de Mendoza, accompanied by King Ferdinand the Catholic, “thus following the standard practice of the day to consecrate mosques and turn them into Christian churches,” Maldonado explained.  After being consecrated, the mosque was destroyed and a gothic-style church was raised in its place.

Each month special commemorative acts will take place at the church.  The main celebration will take place in April, when the church celebrates 525 years since its consecration.

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