Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Crucifixes in government buildings

"It is important that God is present in public life, with the sign of the cross, in homes and public buildings," the Italian news agency ANSA quoted the pontiff as saying during his homily in a parish church in Castel Gandolfo, the hill town outside Rome where the Vatican has its vacation retreat.

(via Drudge Report)

If, as the headline writer interprets him, he means displaying crucifixes, before we get to government buildings, I'd suggest we start with our church at St. Al's.

The story is told that when the church was built in the 1980's, some parishioners wanted a crucifix. Rather than try to justify telling them no, they were told that if they wanted one, they'd have to raise the money to pay for it. Which they easily did. What the parish bought was a cross and statues of the Crucified Christ and the Risen Christ. In practice, we have a crucifix on Good Friday, and the rest of the year Jesus and the Amazing Liturgical Color Dreamcoat.

So when our building fund drive came along a few years ago with the architects renderings of a new chapel with a design suggesting a traditional church, I found it rather appealing while I was pretty sure it would never be built that way. I pledged, and it wasn't.


Blogger Dad29 said...

Fraud statutes cover that.

A close relative of mine (an attorney) pledged to and raised funds for a new parish convent.

When the pastor realized that the sum available was large, he decided to build a rectory, instead.

The relative called the pastor and told him, in NO uncertain terms, that he would institute a civil fraud lawsuit AND persuade the DA to pursue criminal charges, as well.

It worked.

9:31 AM  
Blogger Terrence Berres said...

I'm more concerned that some cynicism might develop if insiders fall into a pattern of misleading financial appeals to what they perceive as "Old Church" types.

11:37 AM  

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