What are the symbolic, artistic, liturgical, theological, legal and very practical decisions to make in converting a sacred space designed for one faith expression into a sacred space for a different faith expression? You might be surprised.
The name has already been changed to the Christ Cathedral. But the work of liturgical consultants, priests and architects to transform a temple so closely identified as a symbol of Schuller’s sunny, uniquely Southern Californian theology into one that conforms to the traditions of the Roman Catholic Church has just begun.
“The exterior will always be the Crystal Cathedral, at least for a while,” said Duncan Stroik, a professor of architecture at Notre Dame and editor of the publication Sacred Architecture Journal. “Catholic on the inside, but kind of Protestant on the outside.”
Those who have taken on the project recognize that their assignment is a intimidating one, but they also have faith:
They can turn the Crystal Cathedral into the Christ Cathedral.
It is a fascinating story. It affirms our quest here (in the blog) and in the Sunday Morning Forum to ‘pay attention’ to our faith expressed in art and our faith shaped by art (in its many forms). What do you think?
Image: Mark Boster in the LA Times. Click the image to view more photographs of this project and of the history of the Crystal Cathedral.