La Crosse: new old church

Many thanks to NLM for this great glimpse of a new old church being completed in La Crosse, WI, which H.E. Raymond Burke initiated.

Honestly, this church looks like it was transported from Baroque Rome.

Look at this new … I repeat… new… baldachino.

 

Go over to NLM for more. 

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22 Responses to La Crosse: new old church

  1. Prof. Basto says:

    Father.

    Unrelated news also from the NLM. I’m no Sarkozy fan – with his divorce and remarry stuff – but this seems huge.

    As you probably are aware, France has a much stricter policy of Religion/State separation than the US, that borders (or reaches the level of) anti-clericalism, the exclusion of faith from the public square, as if secularism were a kind of State religion, and faiths were only supposed to be lived in private places, but not to inform people’s public actions.

    Well, I’ve read reports in the past that the French President favors
    a less anti-clerical form of secularism, more similar to the US model
    of Church and State separation. In that context, the following report
    on the NLM site is huge:

    “The following story comes from French news source, Nouvel OBS. This is an NLM translation of the piece.

    The French president Nicolas Sarkozy, honourary canon of the Basilica of Saint John Lateran in Rome, has sent a message of congratulations to four Catholic traditionalist deacons who were ordained Saturday, it was revealed on Monday, February 24 by the religious information agency, I. Media.

    This message was read at the end of the ordination ceremony of four deacons – two French, an Italian and a Polish – by Father Philippe Laguérie, superior of the traditionalist Institute of the Good Shepherd, said a witness to AFP.

    [...]

    France is one of the bastions of Lefebvrists celebrating the Mass in Latin, called “Tridentine”, and who reject the teachings of the Second Vatican Council on religious freedom and inter-religious dialogue.

    Prior to being reinstated to the Catholic Church with the Institute of the Good Shepherd, Father Laguérie was from 1984 to 1997 the priest of the Church of St. Nicolas du Chardonnet in Paris, occupied illegally by the integrists since 1977.

    Nicolas Sarkozy had moved last December 20 in Rome to receive the title of honourary canon of St. John Lateran, the cathedral of the pope, a purely honourary distinction given to kings and presidents of France since Henri IV in the 17th century.

    The speech he made on that occasion led to a wave of shock in France. Nicolas Sarkozy has exalted the “Christian roots of France” and spoke of “the suffering” among Catholics caused by the implementation of the introduction of secularism with the 1905 law. (AFP)

  2. Most impressive! This would quite unthinkable over in these British Isles: concrete bunker Catholic churches are de rigour here. More sensible attitudes seem to prevail on the other side of the Atlantic.

  3. jane in memphis says:

    Beautiful church!!!

    Where’s the altar rail?

    jane in memphis

  4. Jonathan Bennett says:

    am very impressed. I actually like the idea of having a freestanding Altar with the baldacchino, very renaissance. I suppose most of the Masses here will be celebrated versus populum (though hopefully utilizing the “Benedictine” Altar setting), but at least it will allow for ad orientem Masses in both forms.

    I am also glad to see the revival of side Altars. Most other modern churches are sadly lacking in this regard. Does anyone know if the side Altars are intended to actually be used, or are merely for aesthetic purposes?

  5. Jonathan Bennett says:

    Jane in memphis,

    The architectural floorplans show a communion rail in front of the baldacchino. There is also an actual pulpit rather then the small lectern we see in most other modern churches.

  6. Doug says:

    Expectation,
    This is pretty unusual on this side of the pond too. On the original post for these pictures at Creative Minority Report, architectural historian Dr. Denis McNamara noted this development in particular because he wants to convince people “If anyone is still in the ‘it just can’t be done any more’ school of beautiful liturgical art and architecture, this will gently nudge them out of it.

    We have too many concrete bunkers too

  7. David Andrew says:

    Ah. . . that baldachino . . . now THAT’s what I call “noble simplicity!”

  8. Doug, thankyou for your answer. It is certainly true that this may be also unusual on your side of the pond, but the USA does have strong and vibrant islands of orthodoxy where beauty and traditional church architecture can flourish. I noticed this when I last visited. Alas this is not the case in England, with the possible exception of the Birmingham, London and Oxford Oratories, which happen to be largely exempt from the authority of our bishops!
    God bless.

  9. RBrown says:

    Prof Basto,

    You’re right about France. The Abbey of Fontgombault has no tax exempt status–it is listed as a pottery factory.

    And Catholic weddings are not recognized by the state. Anyone married in a Catholic Church must do a secular repeat.

  10. Maureen says:

    However, it’s on the English side of the pond that a Goring-by-Sea Catholic parish rejoices in a full scale reproduction of the Sistine Chapel ceiling.

    Stupefying, I’m telling you. And much better than acoustic tile.
    http://joannabogle.blogspot.com/2008/02/you-have-got-to-see-this.html

  11. Papaefidelis says:

    What an awful church! You can’t see any baptismal pool anywhere. The sanctuary is set off from the “people.” All that marble and triumphalistic artistry is going to turn off and alienate those who do not share their high Christological and Eucharistic theology. Or is that the point? Next thing you know, they’ll be chanting in Latin and you won’t be able to find any women in the sanctuary. What about the altar girls and eucharistic monsters (I mean ministers. Sorry.)? As for me, I’m just glad that my parish has a “Leader of Song.” Gosh, if she didn’t flail her arms around as she does, I’d never know when to sing!

  12. magdalen says:

    There will be a communion rail. And the Shrine will be staffed by
    the Franciscans of the Immaculate so there will be both the ordinary
    and extraordinary form of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.

    We will have a wonderful pilgrimage destination there in Lacrosse!

  13. EDG says:

    Molto nice.

  14. Adam says:

    This is completely off topic, but I have heard today from my music professor that some sort of Vatican document was issued last year banning all things like the “Mass of Creation” stuff starting in 2009 in place of more Baroque music. I pride myself on trying to keep up rather closely and I don’t believe I would have missed something quite this momentous. I remember reading the other day on this blog a similar question from someone whose parish musician said something similar. At first I wrote it off, but now I’m beginning to wonder if it has any credence. Here in my Archdiocese, liberal as it is, they intend to “implement” this, so I’m confused. Any insights?

  15. Malta says:

    this is a beautiful rood. Roods were destroyed around France during the Revolution, and only that at Saint Etienne has survived.

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

    They are enormously significant symbolically (and here is where the East has maintained this tradition and we have lost it); it symbolizes entering the Holy of Holies. Here is where you priests come into play, and where there really is a separation between lay worshippers and you: only you can ascend the three steps to the Holy of Holies, and make ordinary bread into the Body of Christ. That is fair, since you often give up family and financial wealth (since many priest were or could be wealthy, and are very intelligent, and yet give up that aspect of life to serve Our Lord.) Why can’t there be that separation? It is the way it should be (maybe Castro disagrees, but who gives a s**t about him?!)

    So, the Priest ascends to the Holy of Holies, and performs the greatest miracle on earth–greater than the parting of the Red Sea–in turning ordinary bread and wine into the Body and Blood of Christ. There should be a symbolic emphasis on that in Church. This church in La Crosse is just gorgeous!

  16. Former Altar Boy says:

    Praise God! A church being built in this country that actually looks like a church.

  17. Matt says:

    Ahem….

    Where will the choir and band assemble themselves? There is certainly no room
    left up front! It seems that the clerics have once again relegated the laity
    to the sidelines, preferring them to dooze and doodle during Mass rather than
    actively participate as the second Vatican council instructed. When will you
    people learn?….

    I humbly suggest that if the laity ostracizing baldachino can not be removed
    to the side of the church, they could at least suspend one massive
    powerpoint type screen from it. This would at least allow us lay folks to sing
    and follow the readings.

    I think a famous saying is appropriate here: Those who don’t learn from the
    past are doomed to repeat mistakes in the future. Think about that and think
    about starting a LifeTeen group in your parish if you really want to reach out
    to today’s youth.

    Sincerely,

    Matt

    Viva la pandereta y guitara!

  18. Matt Q says:

    Matt, are you serious about what you wrote? What you are talking about are the very things which is the false interpretation of Vatican II. The Holy Father is not putting integrity back into the Liturgy merely for the fun of it. I’m surprised after all this time reading our posts, you haven’t caught on to how critical it is to re-orient the Liturgy back to the historical and organic roots of its development, to recapture the sacredness of true and holy worship.

    You asked:

    1. Where will the choir and band assemble themselves? There is certainly no room left up front!

    ** That’s the point. They don’t belong up front. Mass is the holy and reverent worship of God, not campy campfire concert time. The choir and band ( a bad habit if one just can’t part with ) can go in choir loft like everyone else.

    2. It seems that the clerics have once again relegated the laity to the sidelines, preferring them to dooze and doodle during Mass rather than actively participate as the second Vatican council instructed. When will you people learn?…

    ** That statement shows up front you don’t understand the effort underway in the Church. Those are false interpretations of Vatican II. The Pope just said per se that active participation at Mass doesn’t mean one physically has to be doing something in order to fully participate. We lift up our hearts to the Lord. With our hearts we enter fully into the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass and easily be done quietly from the pew. When will people like you learn?

    3. I humbly suggest that if the laity ostracizing baldachino can not be removed
    to the side of the church, they could at least suspend one massive powerpoint type screen from it. This would at least allow us lay folks to sing and follow the readings.

    ** First of all, following the readings is done with a Missal or a missalette. You’re in church to worship, not be entertained. Such a parish building a church as above is not going to be squandering money on a flat panel to hang in church.

    Secondly, if such a type of worship as you described is so desired, do it the auditorium.

    4. I think a famous saying is appropriate here: Those who don’t learn from the past are doomed to repeat mistakes in the future.

    ** You got that right. That is why there such an effort on the part of the present Pope and committed laity to reverse all the false teachings and what-not which resulted from a false and incorrect interpretation of Vatican II. Yes, we are trying very hard not the let falsehoods of the past forty years continue to repeat itself over and over again and to spare our youth from all of this nonsense.

    5. Think about that and think about starting a LifeTeen group in your parish if you really want to reach out to today’s youth.

    ** Our teens would be better off being introduced to their Holy Roman Catholic Faith by authentic worship and posture, giving them a true sense of the sacred and what it means to be reverent to what is truly holy. More of the youth are attracted to the Tridentine way of things because it shows them these very values.

  19. Matt Q: Very well said….

    to the other Matt: on why you shouldn’t have Lifeteen: go here: http://truthbloggedhere.blogspot.com/2008/01/i-am-going-to-get-slammed-for-this-my.html

  20. Joseph says:

    Hi Matt,

    I thought you were pulling legs here, but on reading, and then re-reading, I get that you are serious!

    That certainly does not shock me, as I myself — a GIA composer (no big name) and leader of Cath. contemporary, indeed gospel choirs, for more than 25 years — have come full circle and think that all we have become through all of this is poor imitation protestants, and usually that of the worst branch of Protestantism, i.e, World Council of Churches type, (and that is exactly what I, and my ilk, worked for, so I’m not just blathering theoretically here! Well intentioned though we were/are.) I don’t hate contemporary music, per se, even in church, but look at the sum total of what this so called “movement” has done, and I mean not the music as such, but the whole package.

    Again, not blaming the music, but Matt, can we get the big picture in focus? Just one stark example: it would have been just a thing of nonplussed unbelief to anyone, never mind Catholics, years ago to even suggest a “Vagina Monologues” play would become a yearly event at Notre Dame (as it is and has been and also other “Catholic” U’s.) I myself am familiar with a recent situation where this same hallowed University recently sent forth one its newly formed “liturgists” (this term in and of itself needs some serious dissection/discussion here) only to be fired on that person’s first job for on the job morality issues (don’t want to elaborate, but starts with g and ends with n and a y and a p somewhere in the middle). This same church, hypocrites that THEY are, (cheek firmly tongued here) have as one of the choral directors a gay man “married” to one of the choristers, (the share, besides a bed, a hyphenated last name, isn’t that “special”). Another such couple at the same church have recently adopted a cute Asian boy and they are more a “family” than Sister Sledge. And I could write a book on the other things I have seen, and BTW, Matt, look into Life Teen more closely, will you, please? The Arizona based founder, etc. Some well documented scandals.

    My “book” might start with the lack of real understanding of the Catholic faith that I encounter ubiquitouslly, and go on to the “Home Depot” look sported at the more affluent churches near my house. (Actually, people look better at HD!) Chapters come to mind of PC this and that, non orthodox theology, liturgical abuse and language wars, eating/drinking in church, dumbed down, imprecise language, destruction of perfectly good church architecture, replaced with?? Catholic schools now rented out to “Rainbow” schools, great Catholic hospital closing right and left, names like Providence and Queen of Angels, replaced with Sweedish and Dream Center, and etc., etc., and we have now?? oh, yeah, nuns in pant suits bossing effete priests around who are afraid for their jobs and guess what, Matt? this just doesn’t exist where I find those “unenlightened” traddy’s — who may, in the end have some other issues, but at least they understand that the great veil did not lift from the church with VII — and history will prove that correct.

    Answer? We need a real infusion of a Christ centered and historically rooted Catholic identity again, and only tradition can supply this, from my viewpoint.

    Now, Matt, where should those guitar amps go? Should I pick up an “Autotune” while I’m at Guitar Center?

    If you decide to really look into this, and find it all shockingly true and common place, don’t feel dumb. I have been where you are, and for a good amount of time. I thought that if we had just better played instruments, better executed songs, hymns and homiletics, these would bring it all home, and the Church would “really” become the Church. It doesn’t quite work that way.

    Best wishes,

  21. RBrown says:

    Where will the choir and band assemble themselves? There is certainly no room left up front! It seems that the clerics have once again relegated the laity to the sidelines, preferring them to dooze and doodle during Mass rather than actively participate as the second Vatican council instructed. When will you people learn?….

    Bands belong in parades, dances, and sporting events. I recommend those events should you desire that kind of music, which has almost nothing to do with the worship of God.

    I humbly suggest that if the laity ostracizing baldachino can not be removed to the side of the church, they could at least suspend one massive powerpoint type screen from it. This would at least allow us lay folks to sing and follow the readings.

    Us lay folks? What do you mean “us” Kemo Sabe? Who appointed you to speak for the laity?

    I think a famous saying is appropriate here: Those who don’t learn from the past are doomed to repeat mistakes in the future. Think about that and think about starting a LifeTeen group in your parish if you really want to reach out to today’s youth.
    Sincerely,
    Matt

    Of course, that famous saying also applies to the recent past. Those who don’t learn from the events of the past 40 years are doomed to live in a Church with priests pawing at altar boys–and of course, there’s the little matter of almost no one wanting to become a priest or religous.

  22. Prof. Basto says:

    It’s a joke isn’t it? Come on.