Sunday, May 18, 2014


Some nun 'who did a course', presumably, had imposed her understanding of liturgy on this building and on the community that used it, now the parish priest has restored it.

I'm not too sure I see the point of two altars on one sanctuary but I like the idea of the priest moving from 'worship space' back to 'church'. It is emblematic of so much that has happened in the last few years; the recognition that our faith is deeply rooted in the past, that it did not emerge from some year zero around 1970.

This is the unfocussed mess the nun designed What is it saying, what sign is being given? The obvious answer is confusion, uncertainty, a lack of integrity, cheapness, fabrication. I can't understand the 'pinkness' either, what is that about; sister's lipstick?.
(thanks to Sergio)


Richard Collins said...

Encouraging post Father and I love the phrase "some nun" - sadly, we have too many of those.

vetusta ecclesia said...

I see that "Evangelical Catholic" George Weigel favours ad orientem.

Amfortas said...

So much better than the bling-like makeover at St Patrick's Soho.

John Vasc said...

$2,300,000 to undo the previous 'work' on the church - that certainly was one *very* high-maintenance nun! :-)

Like Father Ray, I was disappointed by the presence of the second altar - it looks as if the parish sees the High Altar as a background, and hasn't got to grips with this 'new-fangled' ad orientem thingy, or perhaps Fr Cunningham doesn't want to chance his arm just yet against the old guard.
But nor if they have an expensively specially restored organ should they need (sigh!) an electric guitar (visible at 03.17 in the video). The parish priest is explaining 'We try to create an atmosphere where it's bright, it's airy it's...prayerful' and on that word 'prayerful' the camera pans down and there to the left of the altar the obligatory elderly troubador hoves into view, hunched over the obligatory microphone. A moment for ironists to savour.

But still, it's a great new start for this Brooklyn parish church, and now all that's needed is some adventurous spirit to think of a creative use for that lovely High Altar...Maybe, even, the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite?

Liam Ronan said...

Dear Father Ray,

"sister's lipstick" ? Gee whiz. Shudder. Thanks a lot. What's the water-shed hour for blog content?

Like some unwanted tune going round in my head it's going to take me many a month to banish that vision from my nightmares.

Cheers. Peace.

Jacobi said...

My comment on this entry, and on your previous entry, Father, is that we must all get back to being Catholic again after the disastrous false ecumenism of the Post Vatican II period,

Liam Ronan said...

By the way, this nuns-and-lipstick business is the biggest shock I've had since 1964 when I discovered (courtesy of the spirit of Vatican II) that nuns had ankles.

Our Lady of Good Success-pray for us. said...

'what does the church really say?' the un-nun's makeover said, don't bother coming to mass anymore, the tearooms with shelves stocked with Reuther and Ranke-Heinemann heresies are thata-way.

God bless priests who care about God's House!

p.s. agree with John Vasc; having a High Altar and a table, does seem to say, that's a backdrop, like the Church prior to the new rite, but the real church is from the table pew-ward.

Sixupman said...

In a Somerset parish which I used to attend, the PP sought to bring the altars back to a semblance of Catholicism - mainly by returning the tabernacle to the pre-eminent position. The pulpit, which was still in use, had, as normal, a crucifix attached to the rear wall. Some diocesan specialist, approving the changes, banned that crucifix remaining where it was banished.

Unknown said...

Grand dad Eddie , Hi Fr Ray ,I think the mass as we've come to know it resembles a C of E service, don't you think we have had fifty years of absolute carnage.

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