If you like A&L, you’ll like LAJ too
There is a new site called Liturgical Arts Journal by Shawn Tribe, who founded New Liturgical Movement many years ago. LAJ has already earned a bookmark in my browser — I’ve really enjoyed the content there so far. Check it out!
Great Beuronese Artist in Phoenix
Check out her site for much more. Outstanding stuff!
Awesome Chapel in North Dakota, and an Apology
Ruth’s Projects page includes some recent work at the University of Mary in Bismarck, North Dakota. The Occursus Domini Chapel is inside a residence hall for women discerning a religious vocation, so the idea is a sacred space for an intimate relationship with the Lord. Pretty cool, right?
The space was designed by a younger architect from the Denver area, Adam Hermanson. His firm is called Integration Design Group.
One of my first projects at Granda was with Adam, to help supply some liturgical art for this very chapel. A frustrating series of issues delayed the tabernacle’s installation. That was bad enough. Even worse, when Adam placed an order for a sanctuary lamp, it fell through the cracks and I didn’t get it handled. On the heels of the tabernacle fiasco, and with the chapel’s dedication approaching, Adam called me about the lamp’s status, and … I had no recollection of it at all. Still green in my new profession, I wasn’t as organized as I’d thought. I simply dropped the ball.
Professional missteps are always embarrassing, but they feel a lot worse when other people are relying on you, and you simply don’t come through. I imagine it’s hard enough establishing a new, liturgical architecture firm, without your vendors failing in their basic duties.
It was a valuable professional lesson, and I eventually learned to stop beating myself up about it. To Adam, if you should ever see this: I’m really sorry. The chapel turned out to be breathtaking, my involvement notwithstanding.
To anyone else, particularly priests thinking about renovating: Adam is one of the finest church architects in the game today. When it comes to a sense of the sacred and a vision of liturgical beauty, he gets it.
Architecture for Liturgy: Cool site by Benedictine monk
I recently found the site Architecture for Liturgy by Fr. Daniel McCarthy, OSB. The top menu has links like Baptism, Ambo, etc., which serve as a sort of illustrated ritual glossary.
On a side note, Fr. McCarthy has a very cool life. In the spring, he teaches liturgy in Rome. In the summer, he teaches liturgy and Latin in London. The rest of the year he bounces between Leuven, Milwaukee, and Atchison, doing liturgical research and writing books about Latin.
Gregorian Chant: A Cool Thing
There’s a new series of videos floating around the Catholic Web about Gregorian Chant and its (rightful, foundational, currently-being-rediscovered) place in our liturgy.
The featured parish is St. John the Beloved in McLean, Virginia — located near where I grew up, and the home parish of many of my best friends.
A few months ago I had the privilege of meeting the pastor, Fr. Christopher Pollard. Taking me through the sacristy, he quipped, “My style is definitely that of the 70s . . . the 1170s.” Good man!
For understandable storytelling purposes, the videos sometimes put too fine a point on things. On one occasion, the narrator mentions how ‘area Catholics travel great distances to St. John the Beloved, where chant is the main attraction.’ This makes it seem like parish leaders chose to embrace chant for purely musical, aesthetic reasons, and the parish’s rich sacramental life flows from that choice.
The opposite is true. The parish has a vibrant sacramental life and lovingly embraces the fullness of the Church’s liturgical patrimony — of which chant is an integral part. The parish’s love for chant is a natural outflowing from the parish’s love for the sacraments.
Symbols of the Office of Bishop
Several weeks ago, I was trying to write a GRAVE post about bishops’ vestments and accessories. Along the way, I realized I was borrowing so heavily from this article, by Fr. William Saunders, that I might as well just post the link. It is a fascinating overview of the bishops’ symbols, their meanings, and historical development.