Yesterday evening I was able to visit Conception Abbey, MO.
Conception was founded by a monk, Frowin, from Engelberg Abbey in Switzerland. The Abbey shows a real influence of Beuron, with is distinctive artistic style. The monks even wear the Benedictine habit in the style of Beuron. Alas, they sing their office in English, but they do sing it. We heard Vespers before having supper with some of the seminarians in the Abbey’s college, a minor seminary.
The church is a minor basilica.
Nearby, there is a monastery of Benedictine sisters.
They have a spectacular church.
First, consider that these buildings were built in the glory of God. Their ecclesiology their love of God and their understanding of what liturgical worship meant led them to built them as they did. Think of that when you look at churches which look more like municipal airport terminals than sacred edifices.
Also, it is possible to build great buildings today. It takes sacrifice. But it took sacrifice for people to build these buildings in times past as well. It was never easy to build them. It won’t be and shouldn’t be now. But it can be done, provided we desire to express what we believe.