Church

There's something quite wrong with my gallery entitled "Church" .  Well, wrong might be the wrong word... how about... missing.  The missing element is people.  As many have heard ad nauseum, the Church isn't it's buildings, it's architecture; the Church is the people.  The buildings are simply the places in which the Church meets .  

The massive vault of Canterbury Cathedral not only implies grandeur and loftiness, but also the tremendous potential of the community of the Church in working together (the delicate tendrils of the fan arches working together hold up the massive roof).

But looking at the architecture, and the art with which we adorn the architecture does tell us something of who it is that meets there.  The enormous effigy of Christ, palms out in welcome that sits above the great gates of Canterbury Cathedral implies an expectation of divine comfort to be received from this sad-eyed Christ.  The massive support of the fornications (no - not that fornication - look it up) of the chapter house in Westminster Abbey suggest both the vaulted space and air of the room, which echoes the freedom given by the pneuma  of God (pneuma  is Greek for air or wind or spirit - here I mean the Holy Spirit).  The graveyard surrounding a small Church of Scotland parish in the North, near Wick, communicates how fully we wish to keep our passed mothers and fathers with us in the community of the Church, in in the midst of our faith - for our God is not a God of the dead, but of the living. 

By exploring religious art and architecture we can see what it is that we build for ourselves to make our worship easier, more beautiful, richer, more accessible; how we encourage one another, and how we communicate to one another who we really are, and what we really believe.   That we are the beloved of God, living as one in community, destined to the promised eternal rest - alive in the perfection of the Lord.