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To maintain the impression of a sacred mountain, the artists did not need to alter the structural design of the altarpiece or use motifs that would clash with its overall Euro-Christian style. It already had the basic shape of a mountain peak, or more specifically, a volcano. Other elements are easily reinterpreted along Maya lines to maintain consistency of theme. The result is an amalgam in which Christian forms and images are shaped in such a way that they reveal uniquely Maya meaning, while Maya motifs and rituals are harmonized with Roman Catholic orthodoxy. Similar processes took place in the early colonial era when native artists and architects worked with Spanish missionaries to construct and decorate Christian churches in the New World.

Central altarpiece of the church.