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Església i antic convent de Mínims

The religious order known as L’Orde dels Mínims, founded by Sant Francesc de Paula in 1435, arrived in Ondara in 1611 to establish a convent and accommodations for 10 religious members. The foundation of the convent took place on Corpus Christi day of that year, under the command of the Marquis of Castell de Guadalest and Lord of Ondara. They were given a small church and a plot of land to build the necessary accommodations and cloister.

The original complex of the Minims Convent included a cloister, church, garden and, 50 paces away, an infirmary for the sick (1). The history and devotion to the convent and its church are linked to La Mare de Déu de La Soledat (the Virgin of Solitude), the current patron saint of the municipality since 1923.

Regarding the order and the religious members who inhabited this building, it is known that they were present until 1835 when, during one of the liberal disentailments, the church became the property of the parish, while the rest of the assets and properties were auctioned, including the former cloister of the convent dedicated to La Puríssima Concepció (Immaculate Conception).

In the square in Ondara known as Plaça del Convent, there is an architectural complex consisting of the Town Hall and the parish church of Santa Anna, attached to its right side. With regards to the convent, the cloister stands out, that is to say, the interior courtyard that is simple and unadorned, with a square layout surrounded by a gallery of slightly lowered round arches made of tiles. It was completely restored between 1991 and 1995. Although bricked up, the door that connected the convent and the cloister is still preserved. On the upper floors, there are semi-circular openings that currently house municipal offices and the council chamber.

(1) Miralles, R., & Ortuño, V. (1991). Notes històriques sobre el Convent i l’Ordre dels Mínims. Llibre de festes de la Soledat. Ondara.

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