What's your opinion on offering Mass in baroque vestments in a Gothic chapel?
Quote:The reason I'm so belligerent is because it's fascinating to try to understand why trads are so big on Gothic. You have to oppose it strongly to bring out your opponents' reasons for liking something. I want to get right to the psychological and symbolic core of it. No one is ever adequately able to tell me why it's so Christian... in their own words. I don't want to be directed to a book; I want your personal reasons.

Personal reasons? Well, for starters, my very first memory in my entire life is of stained-glass windows in a church in College Station, Texas. It was Methodist and the church wasn't actually Gothic, but stained-glass is a property of the Gothic period. A great many churches in the Baroque period had their stained-glass windows broken out and replaced with clear glass, the thought of which just seems outrageous and Protestant-like. I also have very vivid memories of the stained-glass windows of the Washington National Cathedral in Washington, D.C. when I was in elementary school. Indeed, I can remember the windows of virtually every single church I've ever walked into my whole life. There's something about the way they catch light and form sacred images that commands my attention.

Beyond that, Gothic belongs to the High Middle Ages, when Christianity was more saturated in the daily lives of western Europeans than any other period. It was a style made entirely by Christians, for Christian purposes. Even my bedchamber, as you pointed out, which is painted and decorated in a Gothic style, makes an impression of medieval Christianity to anyone who visits it, even if the shrine weren't there. To look at it another way, you can build a Jewish synagogue in the Baroque style easily enough, but it would be really odd to see a synagogue in the Gothic because it's so associated with Christianity. (I imagine one could dig up a Gothic synagogue with enough Googling, but I'm talking generalities here.)

Quote:I especially want to learn why trads are so shocked when a Catholic dislikes Gothic; it's like putting down the Rosary or Novenas.

*shrug* A few saints who lived in the High Middle Ages disliked Gothic style when it first was being created, but for wholly different reasons than what you've put here. They usually pulled the "noble simplicity" card. Your reasons boil down to liking the ancient pagan Roman ways a lot.

I'm not mad if someone prefers a certain style over Gothic, but rejecting Gothic and medievalism entirely is to basically reject Christian civilization. Since you mentioned the Rosary and novenas, I can draw a parallel by saying that I'm not the biggest fan of those devotions, but I wouldn't knock them down. Doing so would be an attack on Christianity itself. I just think private devotions have eclipsed the importance of the Divine Office, which is a very bad trend.

I'll address your longer post shortly.

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Re: What's your opinion on offering Mass in baroque vestments in a Gothic chapel? - by The_Harlequin_King - 09-26-2011, 05:25 PM

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