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There is something about visiting an old church.
Course - Evangelicals - Church - Building - Meeting
Of course, many churchgoing evangelicals will warn about getting too attached to a church, which after all is just a building or meeting house, as early Protestant churches were once called. Obviously, the real church is the congregation.
Setting aside denomination and even theological questions, there is something special about visiting an old church be it a chapel, church or cathedral.
Edifices - People - Times - Prayers - Celebrate
These edifices are where people have gathered in times good and bad to say prayers, celebrate and remember. Even houses of worship belonging to other faith traditions, say Christian Scientists, have something special about them.
It is also hard for some of the non-believers who come to admire architecture not to be mesmerized by these sacred spaces, which in the Christian tradition were built for the glory of God.
People - Europe - Church - State - Architecture
Many people also think they must travel to Europe to find a magnificent old church. This is somewhat understandable given the state of ecclesiastical architecture — and, frankly speaking, secular and civic architecture — since the postwar years. However, there are countless examples of notable old churches on these shores.
The following five churches, listed in no particular order, are among my favorites. Best of all, none require a passport to visit.
Couple - New - York - City - Fifth
A couple blocks down New York City’s famed Fifth Avenue from the better known St. Patrick’s Cathedral (Roman Catholic) is St. Thomas Church.
An Episcopal parish, the church is renowned for its choral music and prim and proper liturgy.
Edifice - Towers - Manhattan - Architects - Ralph
The present edifice, which can be lost amidst the towers of modern Manhattan, was designed by architects Ralph Adams Cram and Bertram G. Goodhue — whose services were the best money could buy at the time — and built between 1911 and 1914.
The finest part of their design is what immediately catches your eye...
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