While driving through the Irish countryside I noticed several roofless rock structures that would come up here and there as we drove. These structures were just sitting there all alone in the middle of nothing but fields of green.
Our tour guide informed us that these structures were Catholic churches that had been destroyed during the protestant reformation during the time when Ireland was ruled by King Henry the VIII of England.
When the king broke from the Roman Catholic Church in order to divorce his wife to marry Ann Boleyn in 1533, he began the process of the protestant Church of England in which he ordered all of the Catholic churches to be destroyed and pillaged.
Something all of these churches had in common was that their roofs had been ripped off. We were told this was to prevent the Catholics from going to these churches to worship, as there would be no shield from the weather.
This experience was one of those things that really hits you hard when you actually see it in real life with your own eyes, rather than reading it in a book. To be so close to something with such intense history is a feeling that just can’t be described. What a statement these churches were making, just sitting there, all alone, in peace, amongst miles of green for over 600 years and in the same condition they were left in so very long ago.