Skip to comments.Follow-Up on the Milwaukee Cathedral Renovations (Must-See pictures!)
Posted on 04/14/2002 4:59:18 AM PDT by Aquinasfan
First-hand impressions of Weakland's monstrosity
Since last May, I have been a part of a wonderful group of people who have opposed the interior "wreckovation" of our historic St. John the Evangelist Cathedral in the Milwaukee Archdiocese. I decided to view the changes for myself on Saturday, February 17, 2002....
View the damage for yourself.
Weakland obviously hates the Church. But he holds himself in high esteem, being pictured in a bronze sculpture with St. John the Evangelist (pictured)
Words fail me. It's time for a lot of these bishops to go.
Sorry first link didn't work.
Well, I guess it's time to air this all out. The stench is unbearable.
No. Why haven't I heard of these vanities before? Hmmm...
That's good, now everyone can worship Weakland as Weakland does.
I'm just a run-of-the-mill evangelical, so pardon my ignorance..........but where I come from, this (especially the statues of himself; his flaunting of his own image alongside saints, etc., even over Christ Himself) would be called "blasphemy".
Voskos familiar trademarks include claiming that Vatican II changed the theology of the Mass; asserting that reverence for the tabernacle is an abuse that detracts from Christs presence in the assembly; appealing to the no-authoritative document Environment & Art in Catholic Worship; and the charade of a consultation process on "renovating" designed to make parishioners feel as if the ideas he puts forth are their own.
The charade begins when the decision is made to renovate or build a new church. A contract is then signed with Father Vosko, often at the recommendation of diocesan worship committee or bishop. A consultation fee of at least $15,000 is paid to Vosko out of parish funds. This initial fee is paid to Vosko for the work he does in the preliminary stage, in which he will lead the parish to the conclusion that it needs a new church which is suitable for the new liturgy of Vatican II (Although Vatican II created no new liturgy.)
During the second phase of the charade articles appear in the diocesan paper. This begins the conditioning process to brainwash parishioners into accepting major changes to the church. At this point in the process, the pastors goal (with the help of Vosko) is to bring division to his parishthose who are for the renovation and those who are against. The pastor then sets himself up as the great authority on liturgy and church architecture. Vosko will later help the pastor treat those who oppose the renovation as "liturgical retards" and spiritual midgits, ridiculing their "pre-Vatican II" form of worship.
The parish begins to hear that "change is difficult; change involves conversion; conversion is the Churchs business; the parish needs to be converted from exaggerated individualism and private devotion to focus on the assembly and community." The pastor aims to make parishioners feel guilty and, if they are resisting his ideological propaganda (being coached by Vosko), they are made to feel they are being "divisive", working against "unity in the parish" and against "creating a sense of community."
During the third phase the pastor searches for strong advocates in the parish who will support the pastors predetermined plan for the renovation or new church. These same parishioners will later be placed on the "re-vision" or "renew" committees in an effort to stack the deck against those who oppose the project. The pastor or associate pastor will then hold a series of meetings to give Voskos teaching on modernist church architecture, explaining why the Church requires moving the tabernacle out of the sanctuary into a side chapel, why chairs must be used instead of pews, why the church needs to be built in the round, why there will be no crucifix and why the crosswhich will look like a "plus sign"will only be brought in during the Mass, why there will be no traditional statues, why the existing statue of the Blessed Virgin should be kept in a closet and only "brought out on special occassions." Then he will attempt to marginalize the opposition as fringe dissidents. This phase is characterized by deliberate misinterpretation of Vatican II and an appeal to the authority of EACW.
In the next phase "revision committees" are set up. Voskos plan calls for a finance committee, fundraising committee, logistics and hospitality committee, data gathering committee, architect selection committee, publicity and communications committee, art and furnishings committee, music instruments committee, liturgy committee. Each of these then works with Vosko, the pastoral staff and parish council. The whole process is detailed in what Vosko calls "an advanced planning packet," which details the whole charade for those who will be helpingwhether they know it or not with the smoke and mirrors.
The committee structure "more people doing less" helps forge the impression that the whole project design process has been democratic and was a community effort. Each committee is charged with special tasks designed to promote the propaganda campaign. For instance, the "publicity and communications committee" is responsible for announcing the renovation process through a specially designed newsletter, publicizing the renovation effort through local media, placing bulletin and pulpit announcements each weekend, inserting the FDLC "educational inserts" into the weekly bulletin, placing posters "throughout the facility." The committee is also instructed to arrange media interviews with community leaders and consultant if possible.
The parish will then start to hear soundbite-like distortions of the truth, such as "the church will be restored in a way that reflects its original beauty."
During phase five, Vosko arrives on the scene for his "adult education" sessions. (He holds a PhD in "adult education"). His show begins with a "renewal program" designed to undermine the traditional faith of the average pew Catholic. Vosko presents three presentations, including a two part lecture with slides on the development of church art and architecture. Vosko presents parishioners with a wildly distorted conception of the history of the Christian tradition in architecture and sacred art. The purpose of these slide lectures is to ridicule traditionally arranged spaces and to challenge parishioners notions of what a church should look likeinside and out.
Parishioners are questioned by means of a survey as to how they feel about their faith, and the church itself. They are probed about what they think is wrong with the building. The adult education sessions conclude with an "architectural tour" of modernist churches which fulfill Voskos program, "in order to learn about what makes a sacred space."
Parishioners are then led to the conclusion that the parish is not celebrating the sacraments according to the "spirit of Vatican II" and that a new church is necessary to meet the needs of the new liturgy.
A "design workshop" entitled "Gods House is Our House Too!" is held at the parish. This is thesummit of the charade. The workshop is advertised as "a chance to share our ideas for our worship facility with each other. Parishioners are broken up into "small groups," a vote is taken and the results are usually kept secret. Only the pastor and Vosko know the results. A couple weeks later it is announced that the people chose the plan Vosko proposed.
From thereon a renovation committee hand-picked by the pastor is set up to see the project smoothly to its completion. The members of this committee are characterized by their loyalty to the pastor, rather than to their faith or their church. They are indoctrinated to act as apologists for the project and taught to quote from EACW, which they are told is "Church law." (it is not)
To learn more about "Fr. Vosko", go here:
We have plenty of his "gems" right here in his Albany diocese.
All of the above are accomplished in one way or another by the changes made in this cathedral.
Everything is designed to distract and prevent worship.
I'm afraid that you may have to find a quiet corner somewhere else and a sympathetic priest.
I had the feeling that this is how it works. Now I'm sure. I could wretch.
BTW, since my teens I have hated with a passion those schlocky woodcut covers to the Missalettes. Where the hell do they come from? Never mind, I think I answered my own question.
Most Catholics would agree with you, except those who've lost their common sense through their alleged "education."
Last summer I went to a "sideways church" in Stroudsburg, PA just like the one pictured in Schenectady .
Unbelievable. The disease is spreading.
This is his personal web site, more specifically a link to his "projects". Just make certain you put down the coffee mug before clicking on the link. Plenty of before and after views of his "deconstructionist" edifices:
The following are excerpts from his presentation in Ohio. This is another "must visit" link:
Caution, put ALL coffee mugs down before linking to that site!
During his lecture, which was accompanied by a slide presentation, he said that the church building and art and architecture are not the most important elements in the process of designing a worship space. Rather, he said, "Its about finding out about who we are and where were going."
Father Vosko said that in designing worship space, art and architecture are mere helpmates that can aid as well as hinder the process. "Art and architecture are not containers for ritual objects or even people; they are not places where God dwells only, but metaphors that put us in touch with a particular story."
He said worship spaces should reflect the movement implicit in a spiritual journey or search for the sacred, the mingling of groups of people coming together, the memory or story they keep alive, and the way they imagine heaven or other spiritual realms.
They also should incorporate the notion of a threshold so that people entering the worship space experience the shedding of cares and a sense of passage and transformation.
After looking at those pictures from St. John the Evangelist in Milwaukee, I'm sure many of the parishioners now "know who they are and know where they are going" ... and it's not back into that cathedral. I notice that you were able to save your Tabernacle and Baptismal font. He usually tosses the font and replaces it with a pool. For the Tabernacle, he reserves a special treatment ... he moves it out of the church or cathedral. (Note to our protestant friends, in the catholic church, we believe in transubstantiation, i.e. that the bread and wine are changed into the Body and Blood of Christ. Once the hosts have been blessed, they become the Living Christ. Traditionally, those that have been blessed are kept in a richly adorned Tabernacle, befitting the presence of Christ. Fr. Vosko, following along the views of Vatican II, believes the focus should shift to the action that takes place on the altar. The Tabernacle, in that sense, becomes a distraction and is moved somewhere else.)
If it's any consolation, Aquinasfan, we here in Albany are now in the initial phase of a 15 year renovation of our Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception. The project was presented to us as an historical landmark preservation. I can't wait to see what Fr. Vosko does to alienate the congregation in his "home town".
He takes traditional churches and turns them into something out of a Stanley Kubrick movie or a Freemason temple.
These Cathedrals go from hideously ugly, with cherub candelabra and strange statues of the Infant Jesus of Prague, to hideously ugly, with a corpus that looks like something out of "Close Encounters of the Third Kind" and a surrounding display that resembles the flying monkeys from the Wizard of Oz.
I'm surprised that Weakland's "throne" isn't something he has to ascend using wires and hoisting devices.