Wednesday, July 17, 2019


Crystal Cathedral:
Now Christ Cathedral:

I watched Dr. Robert Schuller's services from the Crystal Cathedral years and years ago. I was intrigued by its architecture and its size. I found it odd that it was called a cathedral without a "bishop's" throne. I wondered what it would be like if turned into a Catholic Church never thinking it could be a Catholic Cathedral!

Dr. Schuller's version of Christianity was celebrity Christianity and entertainment often on the level of spectacle, especially his Christmas extravaganzas! He put on a good show.

I am not denigrating his character. He did what he felt he was called to do and did it on the medium of television and next to Hollywood and did it with a Hollywood flair.

The demise of his ministry and life are sad but a part of the Gospel too.

The resurrection of this cathedral into Christ Cathedral is a part of the Gospel too!

I am glad it has become Catholic. It's much more than the cathedral. The entire property is spectacular with many useful, functional and beautiful buildings. It will serve the Diocese of Orange County well.

Ad multos annos.


Carol H. said...

Sorry to say that I disagree with you, Father. The old version looks better than the new. The old seating arrangement made more sense. The wood tones gave it a sense of depth, and a focal point.

The ugly light-box in the middle reminds me of really old medical buildings that had fixtures like that for fluorescent light tubes on the ceiling. I do like that the windows are more opaque than they used to be.

My 26 year old son said, "I know that they probably couldn't, but they should have torn it down."

So much for attracting the young.

Anonymous said...

The redesign of the building wasn't accomplished to attract your son.

Carol H. said...


Your comment says it all!

TJM said...

Anonymous K,

Is snark your middle name?

Anonymous said...

Yes, it does. "My son doesn't like it, therefore, it is bad."

It's yet another example of the absurd radical individualism that infects our culture. It's not about your son, his likes and/or dislikes. If he wants a church that fits his specifications, he can build one. Then, and only then, will it be just right.

The Egyptian said...

if the kids don't like it and only the hip" oldsters do, it says many things
the 70's are dead
The "hipsters" in charge probably are in need of a hip job they are so old
And without the "kids" it really don't matter any more does it?

rcg said...

If her son isn’t allowed an opinion it would be fascism.

rcg said...

If her son isn’t allowed his own opinion it would be fascism.

Anonymous said...

Her son is allowed any opinion he cares to hold or express.

When he (or his Mom) elevates a mere opinion to a statement of what is indisputably true or normative then, Houston, we have a problem.

"Fiddlebacks are best" anyone?

JDJ said...

To each his own, Father.
I’m not a fan, partly because our 38 y.o. son lives there says the diocese can’t afford the payoff, let alone the upkeep. He is now in another parish, hoping his tithe doesn’t go there, but of course some of it will. That diocese is heavily filled with migrants who are very good, faithful Catholics, but not wealthy. Nor is he. He could be wrong, of course, as I often am. I remind him of this frequently.

Egyptian Magician said...

People are leaving the church in droves, so I guess we need more and be her cathedrals, more gold, more flash & glitz, never mind the people in the pews, don’t let the door hit you on the way out. It’s all about looking like a garish evangelical monstrosity.

johnnyc said...

Huh? What the heck...the demise of Schuller's ministry is not sad in the least. He put on a good show? How many people did he lead out of the One True Church? Same with Billy Graham. Sheesh ecumenism gone wild here.

Btw....I don't see Mother Mary represented anywhere.

John Nolan said...

Carol's son was cited as being representative of a younger generation of Catholics. Anonymous was too busy being sarcastic to take this into account. He (Anonymous) comes over as an extremely unpleasant individual.

Anonymous said...

"Carol's son was cited as being representative of a younger generation of Catholics."

What makes him a representative of a younger generation of Catholics?

Only the assumption, without much basis, that his tastes are shared by other in that generation.

What is the basis of that assumption?

Anonymous said...

Sometimes various Protestant churches (especially traditionally black ones) call their pastors or ministers "bishop", even thought they are not hierarchal (i.e., lacking the three traditional ordained offices of bishop, priest and deacon). I agree, indeed odd this was called a "cathedral" given that Schuller's Dutch Reformed denomination does not have bishops.

As for Johnny C asking how many people did Billy Graham lead out of the "one true church", Graham encouraged those who answered his "altar call" (even though you never saw an altar at his crusades) to join a church. I saw him for the first time at an Atlanta crusade at the age of 10. I did not leave the "one true church" (?) just because I went to one of his crusades...

TJM said...

John Nolan,


TJM said...

Father McDonald,

Off topic, but I think you will find this quote from Rorate Caeli interesting:

In its news programs, EWTN has retained an informed and measured view of the insanity promoted by and under the current Pontiff. Many good people have been pushed over the edge by the bizarre behavior, words, and documents produced by Francis or under his name. It is good that EWTN retains enough independence to portray things as they are: after all, the Catholic Church is not a cult under a capricious figure, but a bulwark of Truth, reason, and reasonableness.

TJM said...

Father McDonald,

Off topic again. Do you think PF will laud President Trump for this? Lefty Obama did nothing for Christians but PF seemed to love him! Is PF a lefty politician or a spiritual leader?

Anonymous said...

Nope, I can’t say I like the design of that church. I think they would have done much better if they saved their money and built a Church that is truly Catholic in its design.

Anonymous said...

Another off-topic: Georgia Right to Life is ticked off about state legislators who voted FOR the heartbeat bill (which limits abortions after 6 weeks, with the typical exceptions of rape and incest and a few others). GRTL says the bill "did not go far enough"---as in, no restrictions. What thinketh the bloggers on this sit---is "all or nothing" the ultimate answer as to whether pro-life legislation should pass?

TJM said...

Given the evil Roe v Wade decision, an "all or nothing" bill has little chance of passing Supreme Court muster until Ginsberg is gone. Better to pass a bill that stands a chance and at least it would be a big step in the right direction because at least some innocent lives would be saved. I don't want to hear a damn word from the fake Catholics who routinely vote for the Abortion Party. They are a huge part of the problem, not the solution

Carol H. said...


I hope that you are not offended, but I am sincerely praying for the state of your soul. You assert that I said things that I did not say.

I clearly stated that my opinion differed from that of Fr. McDonald, and stated a few reasons why. I also quoted the exact words that my son spoke, as an example of the opinion of a young person. I never stated that it was bad, in fact, I commented that the new windows are better than the old. Another opinion.

The serpent in the Garden of Eden was the first to twist someone's words. Satan wanted to separate mankind from God and to create chaos in the world that God made good. I'm not sure of your motivation to twist my words, but I love you enough to pray for your soul. Please consider contemplating these things and turn toward Jesus, who is the Way, the Truth, and the Life.

God bless you.

Anonymous said...

Carol, your prayers are unwarranted, but thanks for the effort.

The redesign of the cathedral was not accomplished with your son's preferences in mind. That he should be less than pleased with the results is, therefore, of no consequence.

I twisted nothing of what you said. Nothing. I simply pointed out that his dislike for the redesign, his opinion, of no importance whatsoever. You presented it as if it were.

I'm glad you like the windows.

John Nolan said...


I'm sorry you have had a run-in with Anonymous, our resident troll, who believes that all opinions (apart from his own) are 'of no importance whatsoever'; who believes that liturgy is simply a matter of personal taste and is purely a man-made construct; who thinks that there are no objective standards of greatness in art and music, only subjective opinions; and who can assume that your son speaks only for himself and cannot possibly be representative of his generation.

Leave the little b*****d to me, who have his measure and can demolish him with a modicum of effort. And by all means pray for him, whether he deserves it or not. I have better causes for my imprecations.

Anonymous said...

TJM, I think you have right idea on abortion---go for what you can get in legislation. As in, don't let the perfect be the enemy of the good. Someone used the analogy that if there were a burning building and you knew you could not save everyone, wouldn't a fireman at least try to save whom he could? Or should he just say "well, we can't save everybody, so I am not going to do anything." A bill banning all abortions would not pass the Georgia Legislature this year (it was hard enough just to get it passed in the House with exceptions) and probably never would, but in any event you could try in subsequent years (depending on court rulings).

And I agree the fake Catholics are part of the problem---why in heaven's name have there not been any clerical condemnations of Joe Biden's switch on the Hyde Amendment?

Anonymous said...

John, I do not believe that opinions are of "no importance whatsoever."

Opinions have importance - as opinions. In my opinion, most chefs like to serve steak that is woefully undercooked. That opinion is important, but only to me. Others do not share that opinion and enjoy eating steak that is, in their opinion, sufficiently cooked if a car has driven over the cow and the hot tailpipe has passed within six inches of the meat.

Some opinions are more important than others. Three oncologists confer regarding the procedures to be followed after a patient has been diagnosed with cancer. Three believers in the healing power of stones also confer. In my opinion - which I suspect you may share - the opinion of the doctors is the more valuable opinion.

Carol, your son's personal appraisal of the renovations of the Cathedral are important - to him. Based on his opinion, he need never set foot in the Cathedral, finding it unattractive or uninspiring. Well and good.

His opinion, however, is not representative of a younger generation of Catholics, as John suggested. John may be of the opinion (!) that this is the case, but in making such a statement he is making an assumption based on his own preferences and prejudices, likes and dislikes.

And John, I would love to hear your credentials for making absolute judgments on the greatness of art and music. But, more to the heart of the matter, I would like to see a list of the standards that lead you to judgments of these art forms. If they are "objective," tell us what they are.

John Nolan said...

'His opinion is not representative of a younger generation of Catholics.' So that's that - Sine Nomine locuta est, causa finita est.

Reference Anonymous's last paragraph, I suggest he look at the discussion which followed a post of 11 September 2017. I suspect he may have been one of the contributors, since he used a lot of pseudonyms at that time. My comments on Beethoven's Eroica Symphony included a list of objective standards by which its greatness can be measured, and which are self-evident to anyone who knows anything about music.

No-one took issue with this, which is hardly surprising.

John Nolan said...

Should have been 'locutus est'. I don't wish to insult the female sex by suggesting he's a woman, although his cattiness indicates possible homosexual tendencies.

Православный физик said...

I'm not too far from this Cathedral, and I must say, they could have done much, much better. I suppose the only solace is the fact that the Blessed Sacrament is there....but they sincerely could have done much better with the space in question. it's almost as if LA and Orange had a competition for which diocese could build an uglier cathedral, I don't know who is in the lead.

Anonymous said...

John, are you referring to this comment? "Daniel, this blog is not the place for a lengthy dissertation, with musical examples, which would show that Beethoven's music represents one of the highest achievements of mankind. I suggest you look at the first movement of the 'Eroica' symphony, where he takes a simple eight-note motif from a juvenile opera by Mozart and uses it to build a seamless construction lasting twenty minutes, a daring and utterly original handling of sonata form, a large-scale integration of contrasts (melody, harmony, tonality, rhythm, instrumentation, dynamics, mood) creating an inexorable sense of forward movement. Nothing like it had been attempted before.

Popular music can't do any of this. It's harmonically unadventurous, has musical ideas but fails to develop them, is rhythmically repetitive and lacks tonal and dynamic contrast. It scales no heights and plumbs no depths. It's here today, gone tomorrow in most cases (there are notable exceptions). It's not intellectually challenging. Pretentious videos can't conceal its superficiality. Sorry, Beyoncé, I didn't mean to single you out; I picked your name for the sake of alliteration."

John Nolan said...

At Princess Diana's funeral in Westminster Abbey (1997) Elton John performed a reworking of his song about Marilyn Monroe, 'Candle in the Wind'. Some found it appropriate, others not. That is a matter of opinion.

Ian Hislop, editor of the satirical magazine 'Private Eye', asked rhetorically why popular music was incapable of expressing awe. The Dies Irae from Verdi's Requiem, he said, scares the pants off you. He actually received death threats for stating what is surely a truism.

Elton's song, in its original incarnation, is not without musical merit, and the sentiments are easily understood. But they are equally liable to spill over into sentimentality, which is precisely what happened.

Purcell's funeral music for Queen Mary II (1695) is indeed awesome, and whether it was, or is, appropriate is not a matter of opinion.

In 2017 'Daniel' tried to play the relativist card. He also made unwarranted inferences and constructed ridiculously inapt analogies (e.g. those who don't like pop music in church are comparable to Islamic extremists who go around beheading people). He was aided by a troll called 'Bean' who made what must be one of the silliest comments ever to appear on this blog.