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Healing ugly modern churches
The Republic ^ | August 04, 2010 | Terry Mattingly

Posted on 08/04/2010 2:31:29 PM PDT by Alex Murphy

The sanctuary walls are, as a rule, made of flat wood, concrete and glass wrapped in metals with an industrial look -- often matching the furnishings on the stark altar.

The windows are frosted or tinted in muted tones of sky blue, lavender, amber or pink. If there are stained-glass images, they are ultramodern in style, to match any art objects that make sense in this kind of space. The floors are covered with carpet, which explains why there are speakers hanging in the rafters.

The final product resembles a sunny gymnasium that just happens to contain an abstract crucifix, the Stations of the Cross and one or two images of the Virgin Mary.

"The whole look was both modern and very bland," said Matthew Alderman, a graduate of the University of Notre Dame's classical-design program who works as a consultant on sacred art and architecture.

"It was a kind of beige Catholicism that was ugly, but not aggressively ugly ... and these churches looked like they were in a chain that had franchises everywhere. It was that whole Our Lady of Pizza Hut look that started in the1950s and then took over in the '60s and '70s."

The problem is that many Catholics believe that this look that represented an urgent response to contemporary culture -- especially after Vatican II -- has now gone painfully out of date.

Few things age less gracefully than modernity. However, few parishes can afford to "take a wrecking ball" to their sanctuaries. This is also highly emotional territory, since any attempt to change how people worship, whether they are modernists or traditionalists, will collide with their most cherished beliefs.

Thus, after years of studying intense debates on these issues, Alderman recently drafted a manifesto offering easy, affordable ways for make these sanctuaries "less ugly and more Catholic." He posted it at "The Shrine of the Holy Whapping," an online forum created by several Notre Dame graduates to host lighthearted discussions of serious Catholic subjects.

While some of his proposals are specific -- such as removing carpeting to improve church acoustics -- the designer said the key is for parish leaders to find a way to "bring a sense of tradition and beauty to their chancels and naves without having to break the bank."

His basic principles included these:

-- Do everything possible to return the visual focus to the main altar and the tabernacle that contains the reserved sacraments, the bread and wine that has been consecrated during the Mass. This can be accomplished with a few contrasting coats of paint, stencil designs in strategic places, the rearranging of altar furniture, a touch of new stonework or even the hanging of colored drapes. In many cases, a platform can be added under the altar to make it more visible or a designer can darken the lights and colors around the pews, while increasing the light focused on the altar and tabernacle.

-- Reject any strategy that tries to hide decades of modernity behind a blitz of statues and flowers in an attempt to create "a traditional Catholic theme park," he said. Too often, the result is "strip-mall classicism" that assumes that anything that looks old is automatically good.

"You don't want something that looks like it's fake and plastic," said Alderman. "The worst-case scenario is that you have bad taste stacked on top of bad taste, with some of the worst excesses of the old layered on top of all those mistakes that were driven by modernity. ... This kind of schizophrenia is not a good thing in a church."

-- It's important to "work with what you have, and don't work against it" while focusing on a few logical changes that actually promote worship and prayer, he said. A chapel dedicated to Mary can appeal to those who are devoted to saying the rosary. Candles and flower arrangements can focus attention on a statue of the parish's patron saint.

In the end, argued Alderman, "You may not be able to turn your 1950s A-frame church into Chartres, but if you try to find art that harmonizes with its perhaps now rather quaint attempts at futurism, while at the same time seeking to reconnect it with tradition, the result may have a pleasing consistency. ...

"While it may lack the grandeur of Rome or Florence, it can still become a beautiful, unified expression of the faith."


TOPICS: Catholic; Ministry/Outreach; Religion & Culture; Worship
KEYWORDS: architecture
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"It was a kind of beige Catholicism that was ugly, but not aggressively ugly ... and these churches looked like they were in a chain that had franchises everywhere. It was that whole Our Lady of Pizza Hut look that started in the1950s and then took over in the '60s and '70s."

Alderman recently drafted a manifesto offering easy, affordable ways for make these sanctuaries "less ugly and more Catholic":
-- Do everything possible to return the visual focus to the main altar and the tabernacle that contains the reserved sacraments, the bread and wine that has been consecrated during the Mass.
-- Reject any strategy that tries to hide decades of modernity behind a blitz of statues and flowers
-- "work with what you have, and don't work against it"

1 posted on 08/04/2010 2:31:31 PM PDT by Alex Murphy
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To: Alex Murphy

Some are so charmlessly modern you think you’re in a Toyota dealership.


2 posted on 08/04/2010 2:35:18 PM PDT by La Lydia
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To: Alex Murphy

No more felt church banners!!!!!


3 posted on 08/04/2010 2:35:37 PM PDT by ladyvet (WOLVERINES!!!!!)
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To: Alex Murphy

I find it funny that Catholics seem to place so much importance on how esthetically pleasing things should look in their churches, while some of these same Catholics, when asked why their songbooks lack the beautiful sorts of songs Protestants have (i.e.-Amazing Grace, How Great Thou Art, etc.) claim, “Well, we don’t believe people should enjoy their music, but instead enjoy God.”

I’ve actually had a couple Catholics say that to me. That the Catholic church specifically keeps songs that sound unpleasing to the ear on purpose.


4 posted on 08/04/2010 2:37:22 PM PDT by ConservativeMind ("Humane" = "Don't pin up pets or eat meat, but allow infanticide, abortion, and euthanasia.")
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To: ConservativeMind
A couple of Catholics told you that? And that's what led you to the conclusion that "Catholics seem to place so much importance on how esthetically pleasing things should look in their churches, while some of these same Catholics, when asked why their songbooks lack the beautiful sorts of songs Protestants have (i.e.-Amazing Grace, How Great Thou Art, etc.) claim, “Well, we don’t believe people should enjoy their music, but instead enjoy God.”

Generalizing on what 2 people say. Interesting.

FWIW, in my Catholic parish, those songs you listed are in our song books along with many other beautiful songs.

5 posted on 08/04/2010 2:41:19 PM PDT by al_c (http://www.blowoutcongress.com)
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To: Alex Murphy

I would suggest a new reality show called “Pimp My Parish”, but that would be wrong.


6 posted on 08/04/2010 2:44:18 PM PDT by smvoice (smvoice- formally known as small voice in the wilderness. Easier on the typing!)
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To: Alex Murphy
My priest is from Malta.

Check it out.

Easter

Photobucket

Photobucket

Photobucket

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Christmas Mass

Photobucket

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Thanksgiving

Photobucket

7 posted on 08/04/2010 2:44:49 PM PDT by mware (F-R-E-E, that spells free, Free Republic.com baby.)
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To: Alex Murphy

At least the Catholics are moving toward less franchise-driven gospel presentation. The protestants, meanwhile, are embracing the pastor-conference ponzi-scheme model, where leadership seminars are all the rage, and Hollywood provides sermon suggestions with the video clips it sells churches for use in their sanctua— I mean worship centers.


8 posted on 08/04/2010 2:45:41 PM PDT by jwalburg (I live in the 57th state.)
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To: Alex Murphy
One of the most pleasing Church's I attended years ago was held under a large tree in the mountains of Mexico. The area was of indigenous Indians and they feed us all one Sunday meal which we were told probable consisted of a weeks worth of food for the small town.
9 posted on 08/04/2010 2:46:58 PM PDT by guitarplayer1953 (Rebellion to Tyrants is Obedience to GOD! Thomas Jefferson)
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To: Alex Murphy

The Catholic church should disassemble some of those old, empty churces in Europe that have no parishioners anymore, crate them up, ship them over and re-assemble them here. That plus the Latin Mass and an upgrade in liturgical music should bring back the flock.


10 posted on 08/04/2010 2:47:27 PM PDT by Argus
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To: Alex Murphy

The Church is the people, not the building.
Much of the first century church met in homes.
Some denominations still do.


11 posted on 08/04/2010 2:49:05 PM PDT by MrEdd (Heck? Geewhiz Cripes, thats the place where people who don't believe in Gosh think they aint going.)
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To: ConservativeMind

Many years ago, I wanted to be in the school choir. This was at a Catholic elementary school (1-8 grade) and the school choir also sang at Mass and special Masses. It was about as cool as you could be, given the circumstances.

Sister told me no girls could be in the choir because the female voice was not pleasing to God. Yup. Might as well have been a freakin’ Muzlim.


12 posted on 08/04/2010 2:49:06 PM PDT by radiohead (Buy ammo, get your kids out of government schools, pray for the Republic.)
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To: jwalburg
The protestants, meanwhile are embracing...

Wow! All of them?

13 posted on 08/04/2010 2:49:41 PM PDT by Mr. Lucky
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I personally don’t care what the church looks like I only care what comes from the pulpit and the people. IMHO, the more minimalist the better. I am there to worship G-d not the building.


14 posted on 08/04/2010 2:52:27 PM PDT by bjorn14 (Woe to those who call good evil and evil good. Isaiah 5:20)
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To: Mr. Lucky

Well, as many as Catholics reverting to the non-beige model


15 posted on 08/04/2010 2:53:59 PM PDT by jwalburg (I live in the 57th state.)
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To: Alex Murphy

When Luke wrote in Acts 2 that “the Lord added to the church daily those that would be saved,” he wasn’t talking about a building.

Those early Christians worshipping in the catacombs and quietly in homes were the church.

Our obsession with brick and mortar is pure materialism. The bride of Christ isn’t made by human hands, and, as Paul told the Athenians, the “God that made the world and all things therein. . . dwelleth not in temples made with hands.” (Acts. 17:24)


16 posted on 08/04/2010 2:54:10 PM PDT by Jedidah
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To: ConservativeMind; mware

Please don’t take this the wrong way, but those ARE in the missals in my parish, from one of the major publishers of missals in the country. There is, however, a reason that we don’t generally sing them. They do not espouse Catholic theology. Speaking only for myself, I’m not too fond of the music I usually hear at Novus Ordo Masses. I’m much more fond of the music I hear at Tridentine Latin Masses. That’s just me. I will add, and this is not any sort of a sleight, that, in Mass, we aren’t singing for ourselves. We sing to give glory to the Lord, where it is due. I can, and, in the right circumstances, do, enjoy some of the protestant hymns. They simply aren’t appropriate for a Catholic Mass. No offense meant, whatsoever. Now, as to esthetics, I will always favor non-modern architectures. I am a traditionalist, to the bone. I have participated in Mass at churches of almost any architectural style you can think of. Whether or not the architecture suits me, I am there for Mass, not to criticize the choice in columns.
On a separate note, major kudos to your priest, mware. Beautiful altar displays, well captured.


17 posted on 08/04/2010 3:01:39 PM PDT by sayuncledave (A cruce salus)
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To: ConservativeMind
When our retired Monsignor passed away earlier this year, he had request 3 songs specifically in his will,

Amazing Grace, Eternal Father Strong To Save, and Be Not Afraid.

18 posted on 08/04/2010 3:03:48 PM PDT by mware (F-R-E-E, that spells free, Free Republic.com baby.)
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To: ConservativeMind; AnAmericanMother
The Oregon Catholic Press, to which too many Catholics subjected, is execrable. Oddly, some of the composers featured in its publications aren't Catholic. Marty Haugen, for example, is Lutheran. Additionally, many of them specifically write "non-denominational" music, which then goes on to infest protestant congregations.

Catholics Pastors and musicians who actually care about music have other options.

St Michael Hymnal

Adoremus Hymnal

19 posted on 08/04/2010 3:03:56 PM PDT by ArrogantBustard (Western Civilization is Aborting, Buggering, and Contracepting itself out of existence.)
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To: La Lydia
I posted a few photos from our parish.

A visitor who use to belong to our parish came to our Easter service.

Her comment regarding how we decorated the Church was,

"He changed an airplane hanger into a cathedral."

20 posted on 08/04/2010 3:07:28 PM PDT by mware (F-R-E-E, that spells free, Free Republic.com baby.)
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To: Alex Murphy

Functionality is fine with me. The message is much more important to me than ornamentation. I cannot think Christ would care since I believed many of his teachings were said to be anywhere he gathered people together.

Services outside with no building nearby are my favorite.


21 posted on 08/04/2010 3:10:00 PM PDT by Proud2BeRight
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To: Alex Murphy

I have competing views on church buildings.

The first looks at the old testament’s description of Salomon’s Temple, everything there was to remind you that you are there to worship God.

The second view is the building is just a place to meet together. If a new church met in a old Chinese’s restaurant and became a great fellowship,for other congratulations to paint there buildings red and black would not help their worship.

Then there are beige people that are ugly, but not aggressively ugly. They might like these building.


22 posted on 08/04/2010 3:11:08 PM PDT by ThomasThomas (Isn't enough always enough?)
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To: Jedidah; bjorn14

The idea that God doesn’t care about the building in which we worship is stupid. He does care. He expects our very best in everything, including our liturgy and architecture. Why do you think he gave Moses that long list of instructions on building His tabernacle — a list that covered everything down to the tassels on the curtains? After all, any old tent would have done just as well! The more miminalist, the better! No bronze seas or gigantic golden candelabras — just the Lord an’ Me!

Pathetic. The churches in which we worship should be as glorious as we can make them. Notice that I said glorious — I’m not talking about human-centered crap like “family life centers”, dining halls, basketball courts, swimming pools, 12-piece electrified “praise orchestras”, and the like. I mean they should be entirely focused on glorifying God, places full of exquisite statues, gilt, gold, lamps, stained glass, terazzo, hand-laid parquetry, marble altars, incense, ikons, and sumptuous architectural details. Those steel-building “Church in the Shed” places, with their indoor-outdoor carpeting, folding steel chairs, and audio/video systems are an embarrassment to the Christian faith.


23 posted on 08/04/2010 3:11:56 PM PDT by B-Chan (Catholic. Monarchist. Texan. Any questions?)
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To: mware

There is a whiff of “service department of the Toyota dealership” that surrounds some of them.


24 posted on 08/04/2010 3:13:57 PM PDT by La Lydia
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To: sayuncledave
Have no fear my FRiend, I take no offense.

I am a five year convert to Catholicism.

I remember and love much of the music from before I converted. They have a rich and beautiful musical history.

I have a special fondness to Gregorian Chants now.

Thank you for the comments regarding the Church.

I can tell you that the crew that decorates spends long hours getting it together, especially for Easter since we can not decorate until after Mass on Good Friday. Last year I went home around 2 in the morning on Saturday, got about 6 hours of sleep and went back for another 3 hours before we finished.

25 posted on 08/04/2010 3:19:20 PM PDT by mware (F-R-E-E, that spells free, Free Republic.com baby.)
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To: La Lydia
Still, the result of all that is a very large space which is sufficient for any local highschool graduating class.

That way God and Jesus, and even Mary, and the saints, and others may be mentioned in passing or as part of prayers given as our children move on and up into adulthood.

Good show Catholics ~ BTW, your typical Methodist church is designed pretty much the same way but they split the space up too much so you can't have these large meetings.

26 posted on 08/04/2010 3:19:40 PM PDT by muawiyah
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To: Alex Murphy

I don’t see what the big deal is. As long as true, unfiltered Scripture is preached within the walls of the church what difference does it make what the building looks like?


27 posted on 08/04/2010 3:22:09 PM PDT by pnh102 (Regarding liberalism, always attribute to malice what you think can be explained by stupidity. - Me)
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To: B-Chan

We should strive for what the Russians found at Hagia Sophia “We did not know if we were on heaven or on earth.”


28 posted on 08/04/2010 3:23:58 PM PDT by don-o (Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.)
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To: B-Chan

How about the priest turns around to face God instead of the congregation, as well?


29 posted on 08/04/2010 3:26:11 PM PDT by don-o (Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.)
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To: MrEdd

In early New England, the main building in town was the meeting house. The people were the church.


30 posted on 08/04/2010 3:27:06 PM PDT by I still care (I believe in the universality of freedom -George Bush, asked if he regrets going to war.)
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To: B-Chan

He gave Moses — and later Solomon — specific instructions as to building, trappings, and worship because at that time, Jehovah God DID meet with men inside buildings, i.e. the Holy of Holies.

The Law of Moses has been fulfilled, the Ark and the Temple gone. We are under a new law that is written on our hearts, not on tablets of stone. The new covenant between God and man doesn’t require an earthly dwelling for the Lord.

You sound like a faithful Christian. I’m sure you already know those things. Read Hebrews again to refresh your memory as to how Christ changed it all, particularly chapters 8-10, where the early Christian Jews were warned not to return to the Law of Moses and its trappings.


31 posted on 08/04/2010 3:27:28 PM PDT by Jedidah
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To: B-Chan
He expects our very best in everything, including our liturgy and architecture.

I think you're right. I always complain when they bring out the guitars in our "beige" Catholic church.

If you were meeting a foreign dignitary, a President, or some other VIP for supper, you'd put on your best clothes and comb your hair. Why not do the same when you go to worship? A really nice polo and new pair of jeans look nice, but if you have a shirt and necktie, why not put those on for church on Sunday?

The liturgy and yes, even the building should follow suit. Why play the guitar when you've got a pipe organ gathering dust. Why build an airplane hanger when you can build a beautiful church? Why should we offer "good enough" when we can do better?

32 posted on 08/04/2010 3:30:59 PM PDT by GOP_Party_Animal
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To: ConservativeMind

“I find it funny that Catholics seem to place so much importance on how esthetically pleasing things should look in their churches”

Liberal Catholics think it’s funny too.

Freegards


33 posted on 08/04/2010 3:33:31 PM PDT by Ransomed (Son of Ransomed Says Keep the Faith!)
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To: jwalburg
Just what are you basing these things on? It is not that way in any of the churches I have been to recently. Sure there are the ones on tv who have that good feeling, everything will be ok type of church but that is just them. Not one SBC church is that way. At least, none of the churches I have attended in recent years.
34 posted on 08/04/2010 3:34:16 PM PDT by MamaB
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To: pnh102

When I was a kid, my parents had friends who went to a certain church out in the country. They had a revival meeting in a brush arbor and it was very special. Come to think of it, that was probably a lot cooler than the building was. I also attended church in a tent way back then. These are some of my fondest memories of childhood.


35 posted on 08/04/2010 3:42:06 PM PDT by MamaB
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To: Alex Murphy
Our Lady of Pizza Hut look that started in the1950s and then took over in the '60s and '70s."

Now, THAT'S funny...

36 posted on 08/04/2010 3:46:30 PM PDT by GOPJ (Asked for ZIP? Give 82224 - Lost Springs,Wy - most sparsely populated in country. Freeper:SamAdams)
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To: Alex Murphy

I grew up in a late 50’s early 60’s built church. Yes it was stark except for a really cool and very large mosaic and a crucifix. This is no barrier to prayer and meditation and maybe even adds something. Basically you don’t get to please yourself by looking at great pieces of art work - rather you either a)are fully concetrated on the Mass, or, b) You tend to find yourself in prayer. Either way I find those stark and somewhat unimaginative churches do for me what great Cathedrals may do for others.

Mel


37 posted on 08/04/2010 3:47:25 PM PDT by melsec
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To: radiohead
Sister told me no girls could be in the choir because the female voice was not pleasing to God.

Well they would know...They are Sisters of the one, holy blah, blah, blah...God prefers little boys that sound like girls...

38 posted on 08/04/2010 3:53:43 PM PDT by Iscool (I don't understand all that I know...)
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To: Alex Murphy
There's a church I know of that was built in the 1960s or 1970’s in a contemporary architectural style, that a friend of mine refers to as “Our Lady of Pizza Hut” because of its architectural resemblance to a fast food restaurant.
39 posted on 08/04/2010 3:56:47 PM PDT by Age of Reason
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To: Ransomed
Liberal Catholics think it’s funny too.

That is at least 54% of them.

40 posted on 08/04/2010 3:58:20 PM PDT by ansel12 (Mitt: "I was an independent during the time of Reagan-Bush. I'm not trying to return to Reagan-Bush")
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To: GOP_Party_Animal
Why play the guitar when you've got a pipe organ gathering dust.

Because the guitar sounds far better...

41 posted on 08/04/2010 4:03:54 PM PDT by Iscool (I don't understand all that I know...)
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To: ansel12

“That is at least 54% of them.”

What are you talking about? 54% of liberal Catholics think caring about what a building looks like is funny?

Freegards


42 posted on 08/04/2010 4:24:29 PM PDT by Ransomed (Son of Ransomed Says Keep the Faith!)
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To: Iscool

The pipe organ has long been called the “King of Instruments.” And it’s true. A guitar can’t begin to compare to the majesty and beauty of a pipe organ in full voice. How pathetic that many churches are discontinuing the use of that marvelous instrument.


43 posted on 08/04/2010 4:31:03 PM PDT by WestSylvanian
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To: jwalburg
At least the Catholics are moving toward less franchise-driven gospel presentation. The protestants, meanwhile, are embracing the pastor-conference ponzi-scheme model, where leadership seminars are all the rage, and Hollywood provides sermon suggestions with the video clips it sells churches for use in their sanctua— I mean worship centers.

Sermon "suggestions"? How about full canned sermons complete with powerpoint graphics, available from a vast array of online vendors?

I've been preached a few. One, a whole series on marriage from the Fireproof movie. Others, I had suspicions about that a quick googleing confirmed. Pretty blandly generic in content, as I recall, which you might expect given that the sellers would want to sell to as wide a variety of end users as possible. About as tasty and nutritious as a TeeVee dinner

Some people, some places, have lost jobs over this. Other places, it's S.O.P., unfortunatly.

44 posted on 08/04/2010 4:34:08 PM PDT by Lee N. Field ("What is your only comfort, in life and death?" "That I an not my own, but belong, body and soul...")
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To: ladyvet
No more felt church banners!!!!!

"Lemme hear an Amen! to that. Anybody got an 'Amen!'?"

45 posted on 08/04/2010 4:36:12 PM PDT by Lee N. Field ("What is your only comfort, in life and death?" "That I an not my own, but belong, body and soul...")
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To: Alex Murphy
A cheaper solution would be to wait for the last Episcopalian in town to be carted off to the old folks home, and then buy their old church. Fine old, empty buildings, just waiting for recycling.
46 posted on 08/04/2010 4:41:24 PM PDT by sphinx
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To: ConservativeMind

You wrote:

“I find it funny that Catholics seem to place so much importance on how esthetically pleasing things should look in their churches, while some of these same Catholics, when asked why their songbooks lack the beautiful sorts of songs Protestants have (i.e.-Amazing Grace, How Great Thou Art, etc.) claim, “Well, we don’t believe people should enjoy their music, but instead enjoy God.””

Sorry, but what you’re saying is complete bunk. Some parishes have beautiful music - much better than 98% of Protestant parishes. especially if they have this as their songbook: http://www.archive.org/details/westminsterhymna00londuoft

And honestly, although Amazing Grace is loved by many people, I don’t want any Protestant songs no matter how well lovedin my parish. We never sing any Protestants songs - EVER. Everything is strictly Catholic. We have a Latin schola for men and a girls’ choir. Both are excellent. We sing/chant most of the Mass. Most Protestants who come to our parish love our music and many stay and become Catholic!

“I’ve actually had a couple Catholics say that to me. That the Catholic church specifically keeps songs that sound unpleasing to the ear on purpose.”

And that’s untrue. And Church that INVENTED Gregorian Chant would obviously love beautiful music. The problem is - as so often - Catholics acting like Protestants. Thank goodness we never have that at my parish. I can’t thank God enough for the parish I have.


47 posted on 08/04/2010 4:49:54 PM PDT by vladimir998 (Part of the Vast Catholic Conspiracy (hat tip to Kells))
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To: Ransomed

NO, that at least 54% of Catholics are liberal.


48 posted on 08/04/2010 4:55:22 PM PDT by ansel12 (Mitt: "I was an independent during the time of Reagan-Bush. I'm not trying to return to Reagan-Bush")
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To: Alex Murphy
"It was a kind of beige Catholicism that was ugly, but not aggressively ugly ... and these churches looked like they were in a chain that had franchises everywhere. It was that whole Our Lady of Pizza Hut look that started in the1950s and then took over in the '60s and '70s."

< snicker!>

The problem is that many Catholics believe that this look that represented an urgent response to contemporary culture -- especially after Vatican II -- has now gone painfully out of date.

Few things age less gracefully than modernity.

How very like my own neck of the ecclesiastical woods.

There's more than one way to avoid that.

Decades back, in another city we lived in, the small local Orthodox community spent what for the time was a lot of money on a building that was said to be quite beautiful. I think this is it.

Meanwhile, more to my dour Calvinist taste, our church (then and there) worshiped in a classically plain white wooden structure. Kind of like, come to think of it, what the local Orthodox church here and now uses.

Into the present day, our congregation just moved out of a rectangular brick barn that is soooo '60s (the youth group, lucky them, is getting that), into a brand shiney new "worship center" that is pure 2010 entertainment venue, all beige, padded seats and careful acoustics and lighting and biig biig stage.

Nothing ages prematurely quite like modernity.

49 posted on 08/04/2010 5:03:59 PM PDT by Lee N. Field ("What is your only comfort, in life and death?" "That I an not my own, but belong, body and soul...")
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To: sphinx
A cheaper solution would be to wait for the last Episcopalian in town to be carted off to the old folks home, and then buy their old church. Fine old, empty buildings, just waiting for recycling.

No, ECUSA would rather sell to Muslim groups.

Not kidding. Poke through back postings rants at Midwest Conservative Journal for details on that.

50 posted on 08/04/2010 5:09:08 PM PDT by Lee N. Field ("What is your only comfort, in life and death?" "That I an not my own, but belong, body and soul...")
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