“Whoa!”: church renovation in Madison, Wisconsin

From The Catholic Herald:  “Whoa!” That was the simple word of exclamation uttered by a young girl as she entered St. Mary Church in Fennimore on a recent Sunday morning. While the words used by others in the church may have been more sophisticated that day, the feelings were more than likely similar to those [Read More...]

Priest defends decision to host Paula Deen at church

Evidently, imperfect people should go elsewhere. Kudos to the priest for stating what should be plain to every Christian. Details, from Madison, KY:  The guest of choice for a Madison County church’s fundraiser is a woman who’s seen her fair share of controversy. But Father Jim Sichko stands behind his decision to invite Paula Deen [Read More...]

Shock: man caught on tape vandalizing LA Catholic church

From CBS in Los Angeles: Los Angeles police are looking for a man who vandalized a Catholic church in North Hollywood. Authorities said the suspect, who was caught on security camera, pushed over several holy statues and vases, as well as damaged paintings, at St. Patrick’s Catholic Church, which is located at 6153 Cahuenga Boulevard, [Read More...]

Back from retreat

Sorry for the long silence: I was away Friday night through Sunday morning at the Immaculate Conception Seminary in Huntington, NY, on retreat with deacons from the Dioceses of Brooklyn and Rockville Centre, and the Archdiocese of New York. It’s a beautiful place—still blanketed in snow, despite the warming weather—and a good time was had [Read More...]

Wanted: one used tabernacle

The following email arrived in my inbox yesterday: I am on the building committee for Mary, Queen of Heaven in Jacksonville, FL. We are in the final stages of design for our new church and will be going out for bid within the month. We are looking for a used dual access tabernacle, that we [Read More...]

Vandals strike New Jersey churches

Details from The South Jersey Times:   St. Joseph was cut in half, St. Francis lost his arms and several other statues were vandalized at two Vineland Catholic churches, according to reports. Vineland police officers were dispatched Thursday to Christ The Good Shepherd Parish at Sacred Heart Church on Landis Avenue for a reported criminal [Read More...]

“God forgive me, but I hope the ones responsible for that altar are still in purgatory”

Hot on the heels of yesterday’s post on beauty in churches, here’s a living example of a renovation gone wrong—and an effort to make it right. Last year, I posted on the remarkable renovation being undertaken at one Brooklyn parish, whose sanctuary looked like this: Now that’s changing. Here’s an update from the New York [Read More...]

“Catholicism is a religion of the senses”: why beautiful churches matter

I stumbled on this interesting review by Colette Arredondo of a new book by a leading Catholic architect, Duncan G. Stroik, who argues persuasively for traditional church design: Stroik seeks an architecture that is inherently Catholic. For him, the “form follows function” concept is at odds with the purpose of a church building, which needs [Read More...]

Buffalo Catholics organize “Mass Mob” for parishes

This is something altogether different, from the Buffalo News:  Sam Kolodziej Jr. had a few more people than normal in his pew on Sunday morning. In fact, there were a couple hundred extra members of the faithful inside Our Lady of Perpetual Help Church. And they had the Buffalo ‘Mass Mob’ – the latest iteration [Read More...]

Boom: California city builds first new Catholic church in 45 years

  Rendering of church designed by Robert Habiger of Dekker/Perich/Sabatini, with revisions by Mark Russell, Radian Design Group. It’s happening in Bakersfield—and if this is a sign of the times, the times are full of hope. From The Bakersfield Californian:  St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Parish, Bakersfield’s newest Roman Catholic parish and the first centered in [Read More...]