Tuesday, October 24, 2023


 I could only find one “before” photo, but the renovation of Saint Andrew Church in Roanoke, VA is quite nice. 

Normally I would not like to see the removal of side altars which include shrines to various saints. But what replaced these appear to me to be mosaics and are quite beautiful. I don’t think these are tapestries, but if so, still quite beautiful. 

It was recently named a “Minor Basilica” by the Vatican. Congratulations to the parish.

If I could wave my magic wand, I would have placed a freestanding altar that is more solid-like and more like the Mensa of the high altar. 

I would definitely get rid of the grand piano in the location it is—dumb! 




TJM said...

I notice the altar rail is gone, so no, this is not an improvement

Unknown said...

Agree with TJM. The placement of the "presider's chair" is also awkward and silly, but at least it's not up on the predella in front of the tabernacle.

It still is a beautiful church with almost all of the right "bones" to make it a proper basilica, and it could be realigned with Catholic tradition rather easily.

Another parish a little ways up I-81, though it will never be a basilica, is adding an altar rail to its sanctuary, praise God.


Jerome Merwick said...

Ditto that, TJM.

TJM said...

I am an accomplished pianist and cringe when piano music is played at Mass. Funny how “pride of place” is ignored

ByzRus said...

Thank goodness they found room for the pie-ana.

James E Dangerfield said...

My first priority would be to remove the piano (and any guitars, tambourines and/or drug paraphernalia and ask the hippies to be Catholic or leave. (In a fantasy world)

Jerome Merwick said...


I am a horrible dilettante-pianist, and I too cringe at pianos at Mass. Probably comes from remembering how prominently the instrument was heard when I used to watch Rex Humbard from the Cathedral of Tomorrow.

The piano is a beautiful instrument, capable of incredible sonic invention and stirring emotions. But something about the piano in Church screams, "Redneck Protestants".

Can I hear an A-May-Un?

TJM said...

Jerome Merwick,

I usually feel that I am in a piano bar when the tinkling of the keys commences but your analogy works too!

Fortunately, my thirty-something pastor removed the piano so the organ once again has "pride of place."

qwikness said...

I have an acquaintance that insists all black and white checkered floors are Masonic. What do I tell him or should I bother?