Church of the Immaculate Conception

Since the middle of the 14th century, in Orellana la Vieja we can confirm the presence of a stable human group, the seed of the current population. Initially there were twenty settlers who were quickly increased by seventy more according to Royal authorization.

Juan Alfonso de la Cámara, builds or rebuilds the castle and begins a period of peace that continues to this day. In that first population we can already presuppose the existence of a church for a population that will not cease to grow.

We know nothing about this first church, neither in the documentation nor in the archaeology of the monument, which does not clearly show ancient remains. It was at the end of the 16th century when the Bishop of Plasencia ordered the construction of a large temple.

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They designed what is known as the Salon Church, a large rectangular nave with a semicircular chancel, of great height and sobriety. Made of slate masonry with large and thick walls. The exterior buttresses support the framework of arches that supports the roof.

The roof is made of a wooden framework, divided into three parts, fastened with large granite arches. Some consider it to be the original from the 16th century. The chancel is closed with a semicircular brick vault that contrasts with the ceiling of the rest of the church.

The initial plan did not make clear the issue of the tower, which was later attached to the side of the nave with a rather thin construction and does not accompany the large dimensions of the rest of the temple. There are three access doors, being the main and most modern, 1659 according to the inscription on the doorway, the one located at the foot of the temple.

Almost neoclassical in style, it gives access to the square and the ravine; next to it there is a large cross, a reminder of the civil war.

Above is a stylized Plateresque style window that appears to be later. The other two entrances, those on the sides, have older traces. Also in the XVII century the main altar was reformed according to another inscription that we can observe.

The interior is hard to imagine… only a few old photographs recall the splendor of the altarpiece that adorned the apse. Nor of the rest of the original decoration and sculptures that have been lost in the many nonsense of history.

The church is dedicated to Mary Immaculate Conception, whose image presides over the temple in the center of an altarpiece that is a copy of the original rococo, lost in the civil war. Very nice set and deserves special attention the carving of San Sebastian.

The largest space in the entire altarpiece is dedicated to the Crucified Christ. The same fate befell the original Gothic carving of the Christ of the Chapel, the present one is also a copy of the old one, coming according to some from the Convent. This devotion is undoubtedly the one that unleashes the greatest passions in the population.

In addition to making a chapel attached to the central nave of the church in his honor, the festivities of Christ are among the most celebrated and have popular roots. The whole chapel is beautifully decorated, very nice all the woodwork and carvings in Gothic style that harmonize the whole.

The organ is conserved, it must be of the XVIII century, very interesting the coat of arms of the Bishop of Plasencia Don Pedro Ponce de León, located in the door of access to the sacristy. Some objects of great value, such as a silver Processional Cross, some chalices with anagrams of the Order of Alcántara.