El Llano Park
El Llano Park
The Parque El Llano is one of the main parks in Oaxaca where families like to come and pass time. It was formerly known as "El Llano de Guadalupe" and "Alameda de Nezahualcoyotl". It was around the 1970’s when the park took its current shape, as it had previously been used as a zoo. This park is often used for temporary civic and cultural events and exhibitions. One can also admire here the monument dedicated to Don Benito Juárez that was placed in 1894.
El Llano Park was renovated not long ago, and in it you can walk and enjoy the air present in the colonial architecture of the surroundings. A beautiful sample of this architecture is the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe and the Chapel of Bethlehem.
The church and hospital of Our Lady of Guadalupe were blessed in 1650, and years later an image of Guadalupe was donated by Bishop Cuevas that miraculously survived a fire in 1665. The convent of the Bethlemites Order was blessed in 1707, and the Chapel of Our Lady of Bethlehem, built with a donation from Mr Manuel Captain, was blessed in 1807.
While in Oaxaca, General José María Morelos ordered that the image of Guadalupe be taken in solemn procession to the Cathedral, where he, his troops and the people worshiped it.
In 1821 the Spanish Parliament abolished the Bethlemite Order and the church was given over to the state government, and began to function as a civilian hospital, then later becoming a leper colony and a shelter for the poor.
Because of several earthquakes hitting the buildings, they were later sold. When Archbishop Gillow acquired them, he headed up their restoration to become the headquarters of the Seminary College, which ran until 1916. The temple and the chapel remained open for worship, while the former convent would become used as a boarding school. Today on the east side of the buildings are the offices of the National Institute of Anthropology and History.