Cleveland architectural historian, Steven Litt has an excellent article on Cleveland.com titled "Closing of Catholic churches raises an urgent question: Can these masterpieces be saved?". Midway down the article, there is a section where you can upload a photo of your church. Awesome idea. The spectacular photo above (one of 10 taken by Mr. Litt for the article) is of a "sail vault" that appears in the side aisle of St. Ignatius of Antioch's Church. It is named a sail vault because it mimics the form a square sail takes when filled with wind! Also notice that the arches in the church have have a reoccurring eight-pointed star, representing Christ's resurrection eight days after his death. This is why church architecture is so interesting to study! Older churches are filled with tons of meaning that is lost to most of us (including me) today. These buildings were meant to be read. They were meant to teach. Oftentimes, old churches are called "sermons in stone." St. Ignatius of Antioch Church is an amazing symbol in Cleveland architecture, and it is scheduled to be closed by 2010.
Has our visual illiteracy kept us from appreciating our older churches? Is a box-like church sufficient enough to feed our eyes and inspire our hearts?
St. Ignatius of Antioch Church | 10205 Lorain Avenue | Cleveland, OH 44111