A Tour of the London Oratory: The Chapel of St. Mary Magdalene

A Tour of the London Oratory: The Chapel of St. Mary Magdalene So far in our tour of the London Oratory you have seen some pretty familiar sites; the high altar, the altar of Our Lady and St. Philip Neri, as well as the new chapel of Blessed John Henry Newman. We also saw St. Wilfrid's chapel, which may be a little less familiar t…

Incense Review: Catacombs

Incense Review: Catacombs "Dirigatur oratio mea sicut incensum in conspectu tuo..." But which one? So sings the psalmist about the symbol of incense in relation to divine worship and today begins the first of, what I hope, are many incense reviews. My method will be to include comments on…

Five Examples of the Thurible

Five Examples of the Thurible One of the most beautiful objects in the area of liturgical metalwork is the thurible -- or at least, it has the potential to be one of the most beautiful in my estimation -- and today I wanted to show five examples taken from different periods, some more gothic in their s…

Before and After: The Positive Impact of Basic Ornamental Designs

Before and After: The Positive Impact of Basic Ornamental Designs Very often the 'before and after's' that we have shown here are renovations of entire churches. But an impactful 'before and after' needn't always be so grandiose.  Sometimes a positive impact can simply be found in some of the most basic of details…

A Cimabue Inspired Italian Crucifix

A Cimabue Inspired Italian Crucifix Today I wished to share some new woodwork coming from ALBL Oberammergau  in the form of a medieval Italian inspired crucifix. Specifically this particular work was inspired by Cimabue's "Crocifisso di Santa Croce." The crucifix is approximately four feet high …

A Tour of the London Oratory: Chapel of Blessed John Henry Newman

A Tour of the London Oratory: Chapel of Blessed John Henry Newman To date we have covered the high altar, two primary side altars of St. Philip Neri and Our Lady, and the chapel of St. Wilfrid in the London Oratory, Let us now turn our attention back to the nave. To each side of the nave of the London Oratory are various chapels dedicate…

Sacred Music Symposium in Canada Sets a High Standard

Sacred Music Symposium in Canada Sets a High Standard Catholics interested in sacred music will be making their way this August to Saints Joachim and Ann parish in British Columbia, Canada to participate in the 2019 BC Sacred Music Symposium . The organizers have announced the dates of this second annual event for August 2-4, …

A Tour of the London Oratory: St. Wilfrid's Chapel

A Tour of the London Oratory: St. Wilfrid's Chapel To the right of the high altar and sanctuary, near the Lady Altar, is a doorway which leads into the chapel of St. Wilfrid.  Above the door which enters into this chapel is an inscription which reads, "Remember your leaders. In honour of St Wilfrid, confessor and bish…

Teaching Sacred Music Through Musical Groups

Teaching Sacred Music Through Musical Groups I cannot say enough good things about the Belle Voici a Capella Ensemble.  This small group of professional singers leads the way in creating an effective environment where the broader community can be introduced to the best of sacred polyphony and choral music.  Further, …

A Tour of the London Oratory: The Altar of St. Philip Neri

A Tour of the London Oratory: The Altar of St. Philip Neri Continuing with out tour of the art and architecture of the London Oratory, today I wished to turn your attention to the other major side altar of the Oratory, the altar of St. Philip Neri.  After the High Altar and Lady Altar, this is the next most well known altar at the…

American Church Artist Bancel La Farge's St. Paul Seminary Mural

American Church Artist Bancel La Farge's St. Paul Seminary Mural On occasion I think it important to showcase local Catholic artists, both living and deceased.  One of my favorite American-born artists and church mural painters is Bancel La Farge (1865-1938).  As you can see, he had his own unique style. Bancel was the son of a famous p…

Cloistered Carmelites Reviving Ancient Architecture

Cloistered Carmelites Reviving Ancient Architecture Fortunate souls are blessed to visit this special hidden place - the Carmelite Hermitage of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Lake Elmo, Minnesota.  Here Carmelite hermits have built a lovely brick and limestone cloister with matching buildings.  They now intend to finish the bui…

A Tour of the London Oratory: The Lady Altar

A Tour of the London Oratory: The Lady Altar In the previous piece we gave consideration to the high altar and sanctuary of the London Oratory. Today we turn our attention to what is probably the next most well known altar of the London Oratory, the Lady Altar, located just to the right of the sanctuary. One of the w…

A Tour of the London Oratory: The High Altar and Sanctuary

A Tour of the London Oratory: The High Altar and Sanctuary The Church of the London Oratory, or what is more properly the Church of the Immaculate Heart of Mary in South Kensington in London, is notable as a gem of sacred architecture, sacred art, sacred music and sacred liturgy. Most of us are already familiar, at least in passing…

St. John Fisher by Gwyneth Thompson-Briggs

St. John Fisher by Gwyneth Thompson-Briggs An artist whose work I have been intending to feature for a little while now is the painter, Gwyneth Thompson Briggs . Ms. Briggs, in the words of her own website, is "a contemporary sacred artist in the perennial tradition of Western sacred art. She is dedicated in …

How Basic Elements Can Create Simple, Beautiful Vestments

How Basic Elements Can Create Simple, Beautiful Vestments Today I wished to share an example of contemporary vestment work that I believe demonstrates how much good can be accomplished with little good taste and something noble to work with. Put another way, with a good eye for materials and design, you can make an awful lot from…

Rempublicam Nostram: A Patriotic Text for the Latin Mass

Rempublicam Nostram: A Patriotic Text for the Latin Mass The versicle and response Domine salvum fac regem , “God save the King” is liturgically part of the Divine Office, where it appears in the Preces said during Lauds and Vespers in Advent and Lent. There had also developed a secondary usage, originating in the Ancien RĂ©gime of…

Mozart's Famed Requiem Properly Seen and Understood: Liturgically

Mozart's Famed Requiem Properly Seen and Understood: Liturgically It has been awhile since we have spoken about sacred music and one video I have frequently shared elsewhere is this recording of Mozart's famed Requiem setting, but as executed within its proper context: the traditional Requiem Mass. More frequently Mozart's great w…

Embroidered Buskins of Pope Pius VII

Embroidered Buskins of Pope Pius VII In a previous piece about pontifical buskins (stockings) it had been noted that in instance of cardinals and popes, their buskins might also be embroidered in gold.  This is something mentioned but rarely illustrated so I thought it would be fitting to remedy the latter poi…

Gothic Revival from Altarworthy

Gothic Revival from Altarworthy Yet another fine offering from  Altarworthy , this time coming from the gothic revival. They have done this pattern in other colours, including rose , and it is a very dignified pattern. A very fine example of a good "day to day" type of vestment that is both straig…