Europe is home to several hundred thousand churches, chapels, mosques, temples, abbeys and other religious sites. For visitors, they are places of cultural, artistic and historical wonder. For local people, they are places of community heritage, shared space and local history. Many contain hidden artistic gems.
Religiana, a project created by Future for Religious Heritage, is a comprehensive resource to promote and protect European religious heritage. Featuring information on buildings from across Europe, Religiana serves two purposes: it promotes these buildings as beautiful and unique places to visit and facilitates visits by sharing practical information with users; whilst also helping preserve European heritage through highlighting restoration and financial needs.
75% of Europeans believe that religious heritage buildings occupy an essential place in their cultural heritance. Religiana not only allows greater numbers of people to experience and appreciate these sites, it helps promote the maintenance and restoration work that these buildings may require in order to stay open.
Europe’s Religious Heritage – the 500,000 buildings themselves, churches, chapels, synagogues, mosques, cathedral, monasteries, convents: their furnishings, monuments, sculptures, paintings, frescos, silver, vestments, libraries: the architects, artists and musicians they have inspired over the centuries: their record of national, local and individual history dating back well over 1000 years – which represent a unique and essential part of Europe’s cultural identity is largely ignored.
The potential for religious heritage buildings to attract visitors and for visits to be enjoyable and worthwhile is huge. Religious buildings provide a window into the past, giving visitors the chance to learn more about their ancestors and the world they lived in, as well as showcasing the work of some of histories most talented craftsman.
Through Religiana, Future for Religious Heritage has created a platform that aims to enable visitors to access information on Europe’s Grandest Museum from the comfort of their home, or while on the move, supporting visitors to these beautiful buildings.