Wednesday, April 30, 2008

St. Mary, Millersville

I just recieved these, by e-mail, from a gentleman whose second-great-grandparents were founding members of the congregation. The windows look like they were good.
My source also sent some information from Mossing. The church was built in 1859, at a cost of $1,800.00. At the time, it was 36x50, but it was enlarged to a length of 95 feet, in 1882. That cost $5,000.00, showing that inflation is nothing new. Bishop Gilmour of Cleveland rededicated it on May 6, 1884.

This is very good. I like the side altars.

It was torn down to build the present church, so the pictures are from before 1920.

Putting Matters in Perspective

We hear a lot about the shortage of priests, in the diocese. Well, we have 121 diocesan priest on active duty and about 40 from religious orders. We have 131 parishes. Admittedly, that's a bit of a stretch. However, let's not forget that it could be worse. Have a look at Angela Messenger's description of the situation in her diocese, in British Columbia.

"There are 20,000 Catholics in a diocese that covers about 133,205 square miles! There are 18 parishes and 20 missions. We have 21 priests, 2 are on leave. You do the math! In fact this summer while our pastor is away we are going from 3 weekend Masses to 2. In the neighbouring parish they are doing the same. But one priest will say Mass at both parishes. Two Masses for us, FOUR for him! And he has to drive 40 miles to get to the other parish in less than an hour."

St. Pius X

One of the best lessons to be learned from this church is, perhaps, the most important lesson any parish with a contemporary building, or planning to build one, can learn. I should make that "relearn", since before my own generation came along, everyone knew it.
The lesson's simple. Older sculpture, and sculpture in older styles, looks fantastic against the backdrop of a contemporary sanctuary.
Every parish is a community, and a community needs a home, not something that looks like a meeting room at the Holiday Inn. The judicious use of artwork makes a church feel homelike and welcoming. Isn't that the goal?
Now, with that said, maybe someone could forward this post to the planning committee at Little Flower Parish. They could get some very good guidance at St. Pius.

St. Joseph, Galion

Christ the King

The tower's even more impressive when seen at first hand.

The arrangement of the windows goes a long way toward softening the box-like shape. I'm very impressed with the interior, so I'll have to go back when it can be photographed.

Christ Renews His Parish

I've forgotten to mention my opinion of the Christ Renews His Parish retreats, which originated in Ohio. I wholeheartedly endorse them and would recommend them to any individual, and to any parish. In Toledo, St. Pius X and Blessed Sacrament have them. Anyone else?

Our Lady of Consolation, Carey

A collection of excellent historic photos of the shrine in Carey can be viewed at Ohiolink's Digital Media site, "Lake Erie Yesterdays."


Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Helpful Reminders

Immaculate Conception, Old South End

St. Hedwig

I've been given information on who to contact to get into St. Hedwig and St. Adalbert, so there's another project. Since my memory card only holds about a hundred pictures, I think I'll have to do one at a time. If you don't see the results within three weeks, feel free to nag.

St. Pius X

The exterior's utilitarian, without being boring. I like the idea of placing the church in the middle of the school, rather than off to one side. Keeps the priorities straight, as well as giving the building a balanced appearance.
I'm not sure how the lighting effect around the crucifix is done, but it works very well. By the way, the easel was there for the retreat, so it's not a regular feature.
Now I remember how I made the Morse/Morris mistake in yesterday's post. I was thinking of the line from William Morris. Something about having only things you "know to be useful or believe to be beautiful." It sort of sums up my reaction, and reinforces my notion that the place is like the better sort of monastic chapel.

Whoever does the landscaping is an artist.
Another statue of my confirmation patron. This one's outside the school gymnasium.


These are actually two identical buildings, one next to the church and the other behind the school. They were meant to serve as a rectory and a convent. The Oblates of St. Francis de Sales are using one and I'm not sure what they're doing with the other.

Visitation Monastery

Blessed Sacrament, Toledo

Monday, April 28, 2008

St. Pius X, Toledo

So many churches aim at "noble simplicity" and end up with something more like sterility. St. Pius X parish aims at it and hits right on the target. There's an almost monastic air about it. Simple, but dignified.
All of the artwork seems carefully chosen, and every piece is a gem.

I've been wanting to see this ever since I first heard of it. It's one of the saint's zucchettos. Just how many parishes are fortunate enough to have a relic of their patron?
The eponymous saint. Notice the papal tiara and keys on the base.
It's good to see a picture of Bishop Blair in a church vestibule. I like the idea, and it's made even more appropriate since Bishop Blair's episcopal lineage, the line of consecrating bishops, goes back to St. Pius. You'll find the details HERE.
I particularly like the enamelled cross on top.

St. Francis de Sales. Rather a Romanesque feel to this one. The parish is pastored by the Oblates of St. Francis de Sales, currently by Fr. Dick Morse.
I'll post more pictures and comments later.


I'd like to congratulate the Office of Worship and Church Music for doing such a good job on the Novena to the Holy Spirit that was distributed this weekend. It's beautifully done.


Not sure who the priest me out?