|Main Alter at the Chapel of St. Ignatius|
Sacrosanctum Concilium. That document, though primarily about the reform of the liturgy, also spoke about church architecture. Some church designers, though, went farther than the document itself. “People within the various dioceses in the United States seized up on that because they wanted to promote modern architecture in the Catholic Church and said, ‘Well, Vatican II said we have to tear out all this old furniture because it’s old,’” Anthony said. “What a terrible destruction happened.” Duncan Stroik, an architect in South Bend, Ind., said, “The misinterpretation of Vatican II was like Pandora’s box in which architects and clients thought that it meant anything goes. Anything as long as it was not traditional styles.”
That spawned what Stroik called the “consistently dull” suburban churches of the late 1960s and 1970s. “Cheaply built, ugly, dysfunctional and iconoclastic,” Stroik said. “If they had been built as commercial or residential buildings they would have been torn down by now. There are some churches designed by famous architects which, though sophisticated, are rather poor places of worship.” He mentions Seattle University’s Chapel of St. Ignatius,
the Chapel of St. Basil at the University of St. Thomas in Houston and St. John’s Abbey in Collegeville, Minn. He also cites the Cathedral of St. Mary of the Assumption in San Francisco, which some locals refer to as “Our Lady of Maytag” because its dome looks like the agitator of a washing machine. “Interestingly, they all received awards from the architecture community,” Stroik said.
Link (here) to the full article at The National Catholic Register.