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New Zealand: Did You Know Their Cathedrals Fell Down?

*subhead*Trying to Help Bring Beauty Back.*subhead*
A week from today I'll be going to New Zealand to give a week of lectures on the theology of church architecture. Several years ago, the beautiful and historic city of Christchurch, New Zealand, was rocked by 2 large earthquakes. 183 people were killed.
     It was just a blip on the news in the United States, but it destroyed a large part of their downtown and caused major portions of both the Anglican and Catholic cathedrals to fall down, both now unusable. Almost half of the Catholic churches in the diocese are unusable as well. The task they have before them is daunting: rebuilding much of the city, including two new cathedrals. I've been invited to do my little part.
   This video clip below shows part of a documentary filmmaker's beautiful and horrifying footage captured as the earthquake was happening. Watch especially from -11:50 forward (note: some uncensored cursing is in the footage as people are panicked) and at -10:55 and forward as the Anglican cathedral takes a major hit (it's steeple is already gone by then). At -6:11 and forward you can see more of the Anglican cathedral's condition, with its steeple's cross lying on the ground.
   Please pray for them and for me. The Holy Spirit's the one who will bring understanding, hope and peace to this place. And hopefully some beautiful new churches as well.


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4 comments:

Erica said...

Devastating. Good luck with the lectures. Can I ask you to please remember the theology of sacristy architecture too? See http://www.sacristies-of-the-world.com/?p=231 at Sacristies of the World http://www.sacristies-of-the-world.com/

Erica said...

Devastating. Good luck with the lectures. Can I ask you to please remember the theology of sacristy architecture too? See http://www.sacristies-of-the-world.com/?p=231 at Sacristies of the World http://www.sacristies-of-the-world.com/

spraffmeister said...

This is sad. When I visited NZ I stayed in a hostel in Christchurch right next to the Anglican cathedral. Hard to believe it's destroyed.

Ryan said...

Thanks for this video and reminding me to pray. I did a short study abroad in New Zealand five years ago and still remember how charming the city was, given its size. The Anglican Cathedral was magnificent and during some free time I snuck away from my group to visit the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament, which was beautiful and worth the walk. I was devastated when I heard about this quake.

Of you find yourself under dark night skies while in NZ, look up because the stars in the Southern Hemisphere are different and there is a much grander view of the Milky Way.

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