, , ,

One thing that’s especially interesting about London is the wide variety of cultures encountered here.

There are two Catholic churches very close to our apartment:  St. Etheldreda’s, which I’ve written about before, and St. Peter’s Italian Church, which is just a little bit closer.  On Sunday, Michael and I went to a mass at St. Peter’s.

St. Peter's Italian Church

St. Peter’s was founded in 1863 to serve the Italian immigrants in London.  Even today, St. Peter’s attracts many Italians.  The well-attended mass was celebrated almost entirely in Italian.  Both Michael and I enjoy listening to Italian being spoken.  It’s so musical!

The interior of the church is decorated with Italian marble,

Interior, St. Peter's Italian Church

and in the rear corner, a Neapolitan crèche is displayed.

Neapolitan Creche, St. Peter's Italian Church

The Nativity is set within ruins, which according to information about this display, became a popular setting for Nativity scenes after the ruins of Pompeii were discovered in 1749.

Around the church are some Italian eateries, as well as an Italian food store.  Although the neighborhood is smaller than it once was, this part of London is considered “Little Italy.”

On the other side of our apartment building is the jewelry district, where the streets are lined with diamond and gold traders and fancy jewelry stores, and Leather Lane, an outdoor market where all sorts of items are for sale.   These markets attract Londoners from all walks of life.