Posts Tagged ‘ideas’

A question to ponder…

When the gym reopens, will Father Hilton get to shoot the first baskets?


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Recently, the Remodeling Committee has been looking at stained glass. We’re going to need some beautiful stained glass windows to make our new design work. On top of the artistic challenge, the windows also have a challenge of being close to the viewer (eye level) instead of some distance away.

According to an expert consulting with the committee, the best stained glass windows in Colorado are at Sacred Heart Parish in Peetz Colorado.  Peetz is located in Logan County in the northeast corner of of the state, on Highway 113 and on the rail line between Sterling Colorado and Sydney Nebraska. Peetz is home to 200 souls, and is the “Biggest Town for it’s Size in the State“.

Sacred Heart in PeetzSacred Heart Church (shown above) isn’t big – in fact, it now seems to be a mission from Saint Anthony’s in Sterling Colorado. But Sacred Heart has a set of beautiful stained glass windows designed and donated by European artist Bradi Barth. Born in Switzerland and working from Belgium, Ms. Barth perfected a medieval Flemish style that works well for this space.

Bradi Barth Stained Glass in Peetz ColoradoTom Noel’s history of the parish describes the church and windows:

Omer V. Foxhoven, pastor from 1962 to 1965, presided over the 1963 dismantling of the old frame church and construction of a modern, red brick church in 1964, the parish’s fiftieth anniversary.

The new $68,000 parish home, designed by architect Henry De Nicola, showcased six stained glass windows by the noted Belgian artist, Bradi Barth. Miss Barth worked bits of local color into her stained glass compositions: The creation scene includes the cat who became her constant companion as she worked, while the Coronation window includes in the background the old frame church of Peetz.

The Coronation window is on the far right of the four shown above. Click the image to visit the Sacred Heart web page about the windows.

The next question is, “How can we get to Peetz to see these?”

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Holy Family Cathedral in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Phot...The folks at Holy Family Cathedral, the mother church for the Diocese of Tulsa Oklahoma, are wrapping up a remodeling project that they starting in 2006. They’ve been tracking their progress on a blog too – theirs is called Haec Est Domus Domini. The current project includes rebuilding the cathedral spires (replacing wood with metal), a new copper roof, a complete renovation of the chapel, and a new vibrant paint scheme.

Holy Family’s founding families invested in providing a beautiful house for the Lord. Here’s a view of some of the original Stained Glass Windows – “The Crucifixion” (click for more):

Holy Family was erected in 1914, and was remodeled several times over the years. Here’s the 1930’s look:

Holy Family Tulsa 1930sHere’s a view after the 1948 remodeling. The priests chose an ornate set of stencils for their co-cathedral:

Holy Family Tulsa 1948

Tulsa was elevated to a diocese in 1973. This is a view of the post-Vatican II remodeling and monochrome paint scheme from 1974:

Holy Family Tulsa 1974The remodeling Holy Family has restored the noble beauty of earlier designs. This is a view of the new paint scheme, as completed May 2008 (not yet stenciled):

Holy Family Tulsa 2008Plans for the new Chi-Rho stenciling behind the main altar, and the stencils for the Mary and Joseph chapels:Holy Family Tulsa - Stencil PatternsNew Stenciling in the Mary Chapel:

We wish Msgr. Gier, the staff of Holy Family Cathedral and the artisans and workers the best of luck on their project. Follow their remodeling progress on their blog Haec Est Domus Domini. You can find the first posts from June 2006, including a quick history of the parish, by clicking here.

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Saint Joseph the Carpenter

We had a great building committee meeting tonight. Our project is still alive, and the days until (planned) demolition are ticking down. Due to some critical work that needs to be done over the next 10 days, this would be a great time to start a Novena to St. Joseph the CarpenterSt. Joseph’s feast day is celebrated 19 March and 1 May.

BONUS: See The Person and Mission of St. Joseph by Pope John Paul II – August 15, 1989

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St. Pius X

Stained Glass Window depicting St. Pius X.
Dimensions: 21 1/2 inches width, 29 1/4 inches height.
From a suppressed church in Philadelphia.
via King Richard’s Religious Artifacts

On his Catholic Sacred Arts blog, writer Hugh J. McNichol makes a point about reclaiming what is ours:

Building a Church…let’s buy back our Catholic heritage!

While the American Catholic Church is shifting in the demographic distribution of its Catholic population, careful consideration and reintegration of sacred spaces materials and accessories should always be a primary concern. In a ever conscious eco-friendly world, the Catholic Church needs to reconstitute its sacred materials into new and renovated sacred spaces as an ecological message to the world, and as a gesture of good financial stewardship. Faithful Catholics that struggled and provided the financial resources to provide for our older parishes never imagined their donation, intended for perpetual memorial, to find new homes as designer accessories or surplus architectural details.

As we begin to acknowledge our Catholic architectural and artistic heritage, it is time to design, build and worship in Catholic Churches that identify us as Catholics. Incorporating materials from other Catholic sites as appropriate provides a keen tie to our history in both secular and religious forms.

As a parishioner, I strongly shout to all of those responsible for new Catholic buildings and their planning. Utilize an architectural firm that is knowledgeable of the history of Catholic art and architecture. Plan to reuse materials from suppressed or closed parishes. Remember the truly tangible connection that exists between our Catholic ancestors and their aspirations they left us a spiritual and physical legacy. Incorporate old and new, modern with antique, such integration will allow the parish to experience the physical and historical continuity of an inherited Catholicism.

Read the whole article – it is worth it.

Hmmm… I wonder if Debbie and Larry have any pull with uncle King.

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One day in January of 1206 A.D. St. Francis paid a visit to San Damiano, a decrepit church on the outskirts of Assisi. There he knelt in prayer before an ancient icon depicting Christ Crucified, with Our Lady and St. John standing beneath His right arm. Suddenly a voice came forth from the icon and said, “Francis, go and rebuild My Church, which as you can see, is falling into ruin.” Afterwards, St. Francis resolved to obey Our Lord and set quickly to work repairing that old church.

— The Franciscan Archive

Following the example of their founder, the five Franciscans at Sacred Heart Parish Church fostered a 2006 renovation which added noble beauty to their landmark church. The present church building was dedicated at in 1906 as a German-speaking parish for the Catholics in the Diocese of Peoria, Illinois. For the 100th Anniversary of the dedication of their church, the Friars coordinated a $3.2 million renovation, with stunning results.

Before – Choir Loft and Back:

Loft Before

Before – Altar & Sanctuary:

Sanctuary Before

The newsletter for the Franciscan Province of St. John the Baptist provides some details in a 2006 article titled “A Church Is Reborn in Peoria“:

The goal of the renovation of Sacred Heart was a simple one. “Fr. Larry wanted to make it look like a church again,” says Rick Lair, whose company, King Richard’s Religious Artifacts, played a major role in the massive makeover of the 100-year-old Peoria landmark. What he means is, they wanted it to look like the churches we remember from childhood, the ones that enveloped us in such grandeur that we felt we were halfway to heaven.

On Oct. 29, the day the results of his work will be revealed to the public, Rick is running around like a proud papa, snapping pictures of the high altar, the intricate inlay of the Sacred Heart of Jesus in the center aisle, the 29 paintings of saints of the Americas that line the upper walls.
It’s no wonder he’s excited: From the marble floor to the symbolically red ceiling, the church is spectacular. But there’s something more, something stirring about knowing that these trappings, from the statues to the granite altar to the light fixtures, came from churches that no longer exist as houses of worship. In a sense, Sacred Heart has become a repository for the faith and hopes of legions of people beyond Peoria.

I’d say it looks like Father Larry got his wish!

After – Loft and Back (Taken at Dedication):

Loft and Back After

After – Altar & Sanctuary:

Altar & Sanctuary After

After – New Altar Details:

New Altar

See Sacred Heart’s Rededication Page for more images of the completed building and their progressive photo gallery for more before and during images.

Hat tip on the suggestion to Shawn at the New Liturgical Movement blog.

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The first St. Aloysius Church was built in New Canaan Connecticut in 1862. The third St. Aloysius Church was built in 1967 as a modern, plain white-box space with the feel of an auditorium:

St. Aloysius Before

In 1995, the members of St. Aloysius asked Catholic architect Henry Hardinge Menzies to reorder the interior and exterior of the building. Menzies describes the interior project:

This was a complete renovation of a church built in 1967. After the interior was gutted, the southern portion including the sanctuary was completely re-designed and a new sanctuary, Blessed Sacrament Chapel, sacristies, vestibules and mechanical rooms were installed; existing pews were re-finished; floor re-surfaced; entire area re-painted and re-lit; all artwork was designed especially for this church.

The focus is on the central altarpiece consisting of a 12 by 19 foot high stained glass window in which is located a two-sided tabernacle behind which is the Blessed Sacrament Chapel. The central window depicts the sacrament of the Holy Eucharist and the other six rose windows depict the other sacraments.

The difference is dramatic:

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