The Scripture in Stone and Wood and Stained Glass – A Church Revealed

Catholics have often endured the charge that we are an unbiblical Church. Strange accusation, really, for the Church that collected the Scriptures, determined the canon of Scripture and preached it for 1,500 years before there ever was a Protestant denomination. The fact is we are quite biblical and often in ways that are stunningly powerful.

For the Church, the Scriptures are more than merely ink spots on a page. The Scriptures are manifest in how we live, how we are organized hierarchically, our sacraments, our liturgy and even in our buildings. Long before most people could read, the Church was preaching the Gospel and to do so she used the very structure of her buildings to preach. Many of our older builds are a sermon in stone and stained glass. The Scriptures come alive in our art, statues, paintings, and majestic stained glass windows that soar along the walls of our Churches like jewels of light. Even the height and shape of our older churches preach the word. The height draws our sights up to heaven as if to say, Since you have been raised to new life with Christ, seek the things  that are above where Christ is seated at God’s right hand (Col 3:1).  And the shape of  most of our older churches is the shape of a cross. As if to say, May I never glory in anything, save the Cross of my Lord Jesus Christ (Gal 6:14).

My own Parish Church is a sermon in stone and wood and glass. It is designed around the book of revelation, Chapters 4 and 5 in which John is caught up into heaven and describes it in detail. The fundamental design of the sanctuary drawn from Revelation 4 and 5 includes the throne-like altar (Rev 4:2), seven tall candles around the throne (Rev 4:5), the four living creatures in the clerestory windows above the altar (Rev 4:6-8). At the center of the altar is the tabernacle wherein dwells the Lamb once slain who lives forever, Jesus (Rev 5:6). Around the throne (altar) are seated the twenty-four elders (Rev. 4:4) symbolized by the 12 wooden pillars on the back sanctuary wall and the 12 stained glass windows of the Apostles in the transept windows. The multitude of angels who surround the throne (Rev 5:11) are symbolized by the blue and gold diamonds on the apse wall.

In effect the builders of my Church (built in 1939) were saying, when you walk into this church, you have entered heaven. Indeed, it is a replica of the heavenly vision of John. And when we celebrate the liturgy it is more than a replica for we are taken up to heaven in every Mass where we join countless angels and saints around the heavenly altar. There we worship God with them. We don’t have to wait for some rapture, we go there in every Mass.

I have assembled pictures of these details along with the scripture texts from Revelation in the following PDF document:

Holy Comforter Church in Washington DC and the Book of Revelation

Perhaps your own parish buildings also speak to you in stone and wood and glass. It is sad that many more modern Church buildings have little to say or teach as ancient traditions of church building were set aside in the 1960s. But I think that is beginning to change. Some of the very newest churches have returned to the more ancient practices. I pray it continues. Our buildings are meant to be a testimony to our faith.

Here’s a little video I put together on the architectural details of Holy Comforter – St. Cyprian Church:

34 Replies to “The Scripture in Stone and Wood and Stained Glass – A Church Revealed”

  1. it’s lovely. To extend this discussion and because I would like to ask you something that we are pondering in our family: Our son right now serves as an altar boy. My daughter would also like to serve when she turns 10 next year, but we think it is not appropriate since she is a girl. Simply putting on an alb does not change the fact she is a girl. She can serve in other ways by sewing little baby blankets or baptismal clothes. There are several girls who do serve as Altar girls in our Church. But I always thought it strange since this is the beginning of perhaps “feeling the call to serve” and a girl will never become a priest. She may of course become a nun.

    We are a very traditional family and think that men and women have different roles in society and in the Church. I know there is a shortage of people who are willing to serve. My son often serves at every Mass we go to and he is happy to do so.

    What are your thoughts on this? Being a new Catholic, I am also often afraid to open my mouth and talk because I cannot articulate properly what is in my heart. We are all disciples, both men and women, but Jesus chose men. The Church is feminine. The priest is male. There is this whole male/female thing going on during Mass and it is a reflection of what goes on in heaven. And as you can tell, I’m struggling to even ask the proper question so I will simply ask for your help.

    Thank you.

    1. @Vijaya,

      If your daughter likes to sew, another alternative might be for her to learn to make small altar linens (purificators and corporals). They are very easy to make.

    2. Indeed, it is a real skill that has been lost. Traditionally, wedding gowns became sacramental clothes: corporeals, baptismal dress, and priestly dress. Also traditionally, the wedding rings of the deceased parents of priests are often incorporated into the bases of chalices so that their sons may celebrate the holy Mass with the relics of his own parents; giving them the honor due per the Commandments.

  2. I always thought it strange since this is the beginning of perhaps “feeling the call to serve”

    Is that premise actually correct? Are altar servers really supposed to be mini-priests or priests-in-training? I once believed that to be so. And if so, then of course girls would be inappropriate. But if that is not what altar servers are supposed to be, then what?

    Did Jesus really have no female followers? Did He really have no women who served Him? Or did women like Martha and Mary and Mary Magdelene serve Him in a myriad of ways? And did women serve the Apostles after His Ascension into heaven? Can we really be sure that it was men who baked the bread used at the Last Supper, or is it possible that it was made by women and even brought into the Upper Room by women servers?

    Who stood by Him at the foot of the Cross? Who served Him by ministering to His dead body before He was placed in the tomb? Who were the first to go to the tomb on Easter Sunday morning? Not the men.

    If female altar servers are understood to be serving in the same way as Martha and Mary, there should be no misunderstanding that they are acting in a priest-like manner. They aren’t.

    If we are to say that girls cannot be altar servers because the Gospels do not record any women as being present at the Last Supper, then should we not say that women should not be allowed at Mass at all, that only men should be allowed to receive Communion?

    I once was of the mind that it was improper to have “altar girls” because women cannot be priests — and I still think it very wrong for them to dress in the same manner as boys, as seminarians or mini-priests — but I have since altered my thinking on exactly what the meaning and purpose of being an altar server is. Besides, if the Pope and the bishops say it is all right, then it is all right. Period. Even if I did not understand their reasoning behind it.

    1. I should add that (consistent with my bishop) if it ever gets to the point that the girls are outnumbering the boys, then it would be inappropriate to use female altar servers as much.

      In some parishes back in Michigan, there are practically zero boys who are serving. Add in the fact that the lectors are female, the person reading the intercessions is female, the cantor is female, the organist is female, the EMHCs are all female, not to mention that all the office staff are female, and you have one lonely male up there — the priest — and you have a gross disproportion of service, an over-feminization of the Church.

    2. We are all called to serve and to be disciples. WE are all called to take communion. To me that is clear.

      For instance, my daughter and I have readied and stripped the Altar. It made me cry because it is like preparing for a sacrifice. And we do serve in other ways at Church (behind the scenes — cooking, cleaning, etc.)

      But I am trying to understand what liturgy ought to be like. Just because my daughter wants to be like her brother does not mean we ought to let her … we are pondering and praying about this. I am afraid people will criticize us, but we want to do what is right and holy by the Lord.

      1. Bender said –
        “If we are to say that girls cannot be altar servers because the Gospels do not record any women as being present at the Last Supper, then should we not say that women should not be allowed at Mass at all, that only men should be allowed to receive Communion?”

        Jesus gradually taught the faithful about the life-giving bread from heaven that He will give to the world (through the multiplication of the loaves, the reference to the raining manna given to the Israelites, and finally to the bread that Jesus will give which is His flesh). Both women and men recieved at the prefigured events. This is where your argument fails, you will not find such allowances as ordinary for the rites and ceremonies of the temple where only men were employed.

  3. To Vijaha,
    I am quoting from a longer response given at Catholic Answers (http://www.catholic.com/thisrock/1993/9305fea2.asp)

    The directive covering the liturgical ministry of women is given in the official liturgical instruction Inaestimabile Donum (no. 18), which says, “There are various roles that women can perform in the liturgical assembly: These include reading the word of God and proclaiming the intentions of the prayer of the faithful. Women are not, however, permitted to act as altar servers.”

    These instructions are binding, and in full force. Furthermore, the 1983 Code of Canon Law states:

    “Since he must protect the unity of the Universal Church, the bishop is bound to promote the common discipline of the whole Church and therefore to urge the observance of all ecclesiastical laws” (can. 292:1).

    “He is to be watchful lest abuses creep into ecclesiastical discipline, especially concerning the ministry of the word, the celebration of the sacraments and sacramentals, the worship of God and devotion to the saints, and also the administration of property” (canon 292:2).

    These statements provide a basis for protecting the liturgy from such innovations as females performing the role of acolyte. Not even a bishop has the authority to make any changes which conflict with the law of the Universal Church.

    I hope this helps.

    1. Well this certainly helps, but how come we have girls serving then, if they ought not to be? Does it vary from diocese to diocese?

      1. Alice von Hildenbrand is a pre-eminent voice of these types of questions.

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alice_von_Hildebrand

        As with everything Catholic, if there is a peculiar circumstance whre there happens not to be anyone else available then girls are permitted, but it is to be remembered that it is the individual priest who decides since he reigns as a prince over the ancient and holy Sacrifice of Calvary into which he enters.

        With that said, if girls want to serve it perhaps more important to provide a catechesis of their gift; pre-ordainment by God into spiritual and corporal motherhood. Th focus of a such a catechesis no only prepared girls for their womanhood but also bolsters boyhood encouraging them to fufill their potency of manhood

    2. These instructions are binding, and in full force.

      Would someone please inform the Pope about this please?

      Vijaya — and I am being VERY serious here — I would disregard anything anyone says when they imply that it is proper and permissible to go against what your bishop has said.

      Also, please be aware that, in fact, the Holy See, which promulgates and interprets the rules, has given its approval to the use of female servers at the altar, for example, in the approval of an interpretation of Can. 230 by the Sacred Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, as well as in the public pronouncements of Pope John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI, who only a couple of months ago hosted a large conference of altar servers that included large numbers of girls, not to mention the fact that almost every bishop has approved the use of females as altar servers. It is THEY who decide whether the Church may permit girls serving at the altar, not us.

      Pope John Paul II, August 1, 2001, “Your commitment to the altar is not only a duty but a great honour, a true holy service. Regarding this service, I would like to suggest some points for your reflection. . . . I have spoken of friendship with Jesus. How happy I would be if something more sprang from this friendship! How beautiful it would be if some of you could discover a vocation to the priesthood! Jesus Christ urgently needs young people who generously make themselves available to him without reserve. Furthermore, might not the Lord also be calling some of you girls to embrace the consecrated life in order to serve the Church and the brethren? Also for those who would like to be united in marriage, an altar server’s service teaches that an authentic union must always include readiness for reciprocal and gratuitous service.”

      Pope Benedict, August 4, 2010, “The hope that I express to all is that this place, namely the Catacombs of St Calixtus, and this statue, may become a reference point for altar servers, boys and girls, and for all who wish to follow Jesus more closely through the priestly, religious or missionary life.” See also, Pope Benedict, August 2, 2006.

      1. Let me be clear —

        I was against the use of altar girls. Then the Holy See and bishops said that their use is permissible. Hence, I was wrong.

        It was not and is not and never will be that the Church was wrong. Even when I think that she is wrong, it is I who is wrong and the Church who is right.

        It is not for us to dispute and oppose and criticize the teachings and instructions and decisions of the Church. Our enemies do that quite well enough, thank you. Rather, it is for us to defend the Church — always. The Church is guided by the Holy Spirit — who are we guided by?

        In this area, the Church has said “yes” to female altar servers (together with the much-needed catechesis in this area, as in others, both to opponents of female altar servers and proponents of “women ordination”). Thus, since we should say “yes” to the Church, it is incumbent upon us to say “yes” to these little Marys and Marthas serving the Lord also.

      2. Bender,
        While I agree with your conclusion that altar girls are perfectly acceptable to God and Catholicism, I disagree that in all times and places Catholic practice has always been beyond criticism, even from the hierarchy. While our faith and morals are guided by the Spirit, our practices involve a great deal of culturally-influenced imagery and references and so are subject to change and to correction when appropriate.
        “It is not for us to dispute and oppose and criticize the teachings and instructions and decisions of the Church. Our enemies do that quite well enough, thank you.”
        The Church is the people of God, and we have an obligation to defend the faith and celebrate the faith but also to be vigilant that the practices reflect the true content of our belief (as it unfolds through history).

      3. “It was not and is not and never will be that the Church was wrong. Even when I think that she is wrong, it is I who is wrong and the Church who is right.”

        Well, if the Pope and the Bishops say it is good and well, then my daughter is free to serve. Why then these other documents floating around?

        I also trust that if the Pope ever feels that the Church made a mistake that the Holy Spirit will guide him to reverse the decision.

      4. I also trust that if the Pope ever feels that the Church made a mistake that the Holy Spirit will guide him to reverse the decision.

        I don’t know that I would say that the Pope would believe the Church “made a mistake.” That is what the Holy Spirit is for, to keep the Church from making such mistakes. And if we believe that the Church is guided and protected from error by the Holy Spirit, then we must believe that it was not a mistake in the first place.

        BUT, if the Church decides that, while it was approriate for a time, but it is no longer prudent to have female altar servers and decides to suspend or abolish the practice, again being under the guidance of the Holy Spirit, then we should accept that decision as well.

      5. “BUT, if the Church decides that, while it was approriate for a time, but it is no longer prudent to have female altar servers and decides to suspend or abolish the practice, again being under the guidance of the Holy Spirit, then we should accept that decision as well.”

        Very clever. I am beginning to see how the Holy Spirit works and keeps the Church from making mistakes. So I can rest in peace and always trust in what the Bishops say. Thank you, Lord!!

    3. Lorraine,
      What about the letter from the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Sacraments in 1994 which specifically allowed girls as altar server at the discretion of the local bishop? It would seem that in the ADW this has been allowed, as evidenced by the practice and the lack of a prohibition…What’s the problem?

      1. The Church is the people of God, and we have an obligation to defend the faith and celebrate the faith but also to be vigilant that the practices reflect the true content of our belief (as it unfolds through history).

        You do understand that Caiphas, et al. felt obligated to defend the Jewish faith to make sure that the teachings of certain itinerate preachers reflected the true content of their belief?

        It is not our job to judge bishops. Our obligation of defense of the faith is to defend it against those who are against the Church, not to “defend” it over and above the shepherds of the Church.

  4. Conversely, when one enters some of the non-denominational or evangelical “churches”, one could mistake it for a theater or sports arena. One I had occasion to visit (not for their worship service) in the DC area had a stage at the center, replete with large video screens at either side.

    I hope I never see a Catholic church like that.

  5. It’s too bad there’s a Protestant-style communion table in front of the real altar at this parish. It ruins the very architectural symmetry you’re referring to. I know it’s a consecrated altar, but it’s just ridiculous.

    Uwe Michael Lang in his “Turning Towards the Lord” proves demonstrably that “ad orientem” was the altar direction of the ancient Church, and that “communion table” history was based on bad 19th and 20th century archeology.

    Even more than abandoning Latin, the abandonment of a common turning toward the Lord has contributed to the bad liturgies of the last half-century. It must be restored if “lex orandi, lex credendi” will ever again be a successful catechetical tool.

    1. On the one hand, when the priest is people-facing, it seems to take the focus off of God in some way. It feels less like we’re all worshipping God and more like we’re all just watching the priest. Though, there are two things that come to mind here: first, God isn’t at the front of the building; and second, the priest is acting for Christ.

      Read the Last Supper narrative and you’ll not find a single indication that Jesus turned his back to the disciples to bless and break the bread. “Uhh … just a second fellas, I’m not allowed to face you for this part — I need to address this part to Dad, and He sits over there.” No such line is there. Nor does it say, “And Jesus turned around to say the blessing” — at least not in my translation.

      But, in all reality, I don’t think it matters terribly much. One orientation feels more like we’re all worshipping something at the front of the building–presumably God. The other feels more like we’re all at table together, much like how I imagine both the /first/ Last Supper and the *earliest* Eucharistic meals occurred — sitting around a table.

  6. Unfortunately Fillmore things do change people change and so does the World. But there is one thing that will never change. I am the same today, yesterday and forever – Jesus Christ. The architechture over time will most likely change. i.e. earth quakes, aging,natural disasters and the like but Jesus Christ never changes

  7. I love the architecture of the high arching beams which to be standing in praise of God. The uniqueness of the most Catholic Churches give the appearance of being Holy, Holy and beautiful like heaven. The center piece of course being the Crucified Christ to draw all eyes upwards. The glory to God is shown in the ornaments of Gold, and the stained glass windows which reflect the sunrays in color, tell a story like the Stations of the Cross which the St. Mary’s Church I attend has. The candle lights, once thought to be pagan, are to exhibit the joy, and to honor God.
    The light of the Church is a reflection of the true source of light, which of course of Jesus Christ who is the Light of the World. The Church is the light, and hope of the world as it reflects Christ’s radiance to the outside world. Psalm 119:105: “Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.”

    The church I attend faces North and South. We face the alter on the north with our backs facing south. This parish is only two years old and is very beautiful. I just wished it was facing East. Our old church faced East. American Indian Hogans – The Big House (place of worship to “Talking God”) faced east to receive “the blessing ray of the rising sun.” This was the custom, I thought, in the ancient Catholic Churches. “For as lightenign cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west, so shall the coming of the Son of man be; Matt. 24:27.”

    Honor God with the purity of the heart which is like a church. Keep it holy, the light of Christ will shine in your face, and the eyes will reflect the soul like stained glass windows. “The Church is adorned in gold, but God does not want golden vessels but a golden heart; (St. John Chrysostom).”

  8. Here’s a book that my fellow bloggers may want to take a look at “The Catholic Imagination” by Andrew Greeley.

    He attempts to summarize what is unique about Catholic culture. Greeley writes: “Catholics live in an enchanted world, a world of statues and holy water, stained glass and votive candles, saints and religious medals, rosary beads and holy pictures. “But these Catholic paraphernalia are mere hints of a deeper and more pervasive religious sensibility which inclines Catholics to see the Holy lurking in creation — particularly as they have been treated by Catholic artists.

    Catholicism creates an imaginative worldview that finds grace “lurking everywhere,” from the city streets to the landscape. Catholics draw on art, literature, music and films. Our Catholic imagination emphasizes and draws us to God’s immanence, as opposed to Protestantism which focuses on God’s transcendence.

    I know many Protestants may be put off by this comparison that “Catholics are more interested in the fine arts than Protestants”, but in the end, the buildings speak for themselves.

  9. It’s a very beautiful church, Msgr. Pope. I must wonder, was it like that when you were assigned there, or have you been involved in its remodeling? I think it evokes our Catholic identity and greatly emphasises the reality of Mass – the “cloud of witnesses,” Heaven and earth meeting somewhat in the Consecration, the sense of the sacred and transcendent. I would be very gratified if we had such beautiful churches in my diocese.

    I do think there are very strong arguments in favor of Ad Orientem worship, and having the altar integrated under a canopy if possible, without a stand alone in front of it, but many in the Church are not comfortable with that arrangement. Until they are, I find this to be more than acceptable.

  10. “In effect the builders of my Church (built in 1939) were saying, when you walk into this church, you have entered heaven. Indeed, it is a replica of the heavenly vision of John. And when we celebrate the liturgy it is more than a replica for we are taken up to heaven in every Mass where we join countless angels and saints around the heavenly altar. There we worship God with them. We don’t have to wait for some rapture, we go there in every Mass.”

    Monsignor Pope, I really appreciated this paragraph. It’s so sad that many of the Churches built in the last few decades take the opposite approach: upon crossing this threshold, you’ve stepped from the world into,,,the world or (worse yet) into the decade in which the church was built. Worse than a reduction from the transcendent to the immanent is a reduction from the transcendent to the banal, to the faded days of a past which looked inward at itself rather than outward to heaven.

    P.S. sorry about the prolonged combox silence from me. I tend to come and go as a commenter, but I usually appreciate your posts.

  11. Perhaps your own parish buildings also speak to you in stone and wood and glass.

    Sadly, our’s speaks to us as a hotel conference room does. It is much better since the renovations a few years ago, but still there is only so much you can do with four white walls and a flat ceiling. That said, there is a certain intimacy that is lacking in some other places. And the various artworks that have been added are good. That statue of Mary that stands directly in front of me when I sit in my usual place does draw me in and give comfort.

    Yes, the place is too modern for my tastes, but still, it is home.

  12. Many years ago there was an excellent article in the Homelitic and Pastoral Review about the “approval” of girl altar servers at the time it was supposedly granted by the Holy See. By the time the matter had been taken up by Rome the practice had become so widespread that the uproar over “disapproving” the practice would have
    been more distructive to the unity of the Church (and demoralizing to so many little girls excited to be serving in such a capacity).There is nothing “wrong” with the practice but it certainly is discouraged and always has been. As we had witnessed prior, the major source of Priestly vocations had come from the ranks of Altar Servers. What we witnessed after is a decline in boy participation due to the “girls taking over” corresponding to a decline in Priestly vocations. Not a coincidence. Holy Mother Church in Her wisdom realized that the practice would eventually die out on it’s own (as we are seeing at the present time) as newly ordained priests, educated and inspired by JPII, have taken over parishes and re-establishing what is acceptable. It is only a matter of time. To Vijaya I would say, “Explain to your daughter that there are proper roles for men and women in Church and in society at large. And being an Altar “girl” is not a proper role for a girl. But there are so many other exciting ways in which she may serve. I thought the sewing of altar cloths was an excellent suggestion. And if she loves flowers, the Altar Society would love her participation in preparing the Church for Holy Mass. It would seem at 10 she would be able to understand, appreciate, and agree. Blessings on you both.

    1. Thank you, but it makes me very confused to read your post. Why would the Bishops make a decision that is guided by the Holy Spirit and then “discourage” the very thing they approve? It does not make sense.

      I assume that all these changes happened during Vatican II … so why choose this one thing and correlate it to declining numbers of priests? Surely there are other factors at play here as well.

      I will be speaking with our parish priest privately on this matter. Obviously he allows girls to serve. We do not have an imbalance with girls taking over. Previously, Bender had mentioned that it would be a problem if a lone male priest were surrounded by females … but that is not the case here.

      Thank you all for discussing this with me. My husband and I are grateful for your knowledge and your suggestions, but most of all we are thankful for the Church. We are blessed indeed.

  13. I think that there’s something very significant about those who work hard to attack the Catholic Church with accusations like “unbiblical.” There are many Christian churches. Catholic, Protestant, Orthodox, Coptic etc. Why does the strongest attack seem to always be directed at the Catholic Church? Could it be that oponnents (enemies) of Christ seek to take down the most significant foe in hopes that the rest will be easier to eliminate?
    As for being unbiblical; every time I’ve heard a sermon at a Catholic Church the biblical reference on which the sermon is based has been given. I will acknowledge that, probably most Christian churches do that but, some don’t. And the one’s who don’t seem to be the quickest to attack the Catholic church.
    Usually, when I’ve heard a speaker at a church say things are in the bible without giving a reference I begin to suspect that they’ve got something to hide and, so, I depart. At one spiritual group I went to for a while it was supposedly independant of the clergy but, the clergy seemed to run it from behind the scenes. At any rate; I heard the speaker say that the bible tells us that if we are beset with temptation we should resist the devil and he would flee. I happened to know the reference so I spoke up and said that it was James 4:17 and that we were told to submit to the Lord, resist the devil and he would flee. Before I could add that the devil would not flee from our power and that he would be more likely to laugh at our power; but that he would flee from the power of God.
    The speaker’s format changed subtly into a way that never gave me the chance to provide a reference again. I didn’t continue going to their meetings.
    Yet, it’s somehow the Catholic church which is “unbiblical.”
    Another which strikes me is celibacy. there seems to be a growing focus on trying to have it eliminated. Many misdeeds have been blamed on it, misdeeds which some married clergy of other Christian churches have been caught doing.
    So, why is there such a big effort to have it removed? When I did a little historical research I read that celibacy was brought in to prevent the family ties; which were linking the feudal system; from taking over the Catholic church. As the big multinational corporations take over a larger share of business and; coming to truce like aggreements to divvy up the market; they seem to be using a similar set of family ties.
    Could it be that those who make such a grass roots level fuss about celibacy – and the alleged need to eliminate it – are working to help corporations in an attempt to take over and subvert the church by marriage &family ties?
    If this is so, I’m left wondering if these at grassroots level are brainless lapdogs or…co-conspirators. Maybe there’s some of each.

  14. “The only really effective apologia for Christianity comes down to two arguments, namely, the saints the Church has produced, and the art which has grown in her womb. Better witness is borne to the Lord by the splendor of holiness and art which have arisen in the community of believers than by the clever excuses which apologetics has come up with to justify the dark sides which, sadly, are so frequent in the Church’s human history. If the Church is to continue to transform and humanize the world, how can she dispense with beauty in her liturgies, that beauty which is so closely linked with love and with the radiance of the Resurrection? No. Christians must not be too easily satisfied. They must make their Church into a place where beauty – and hence truth – is at home. Without this the world will become the first circle of Hell.” Pope Benedict XVI

  15. The church we attended today has been renovated, there is now suspended what looks like Pan, my husband
    thinks it looks like a combination of Pan and Mercury. There is no light to be seen,the image is darkness.

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