Sacred Silence

The World of Silence is Max Picard’s 1948 meditation on silence in our world, its violation, and its spiritual dimensions. I place this book within the same dominion as two other works that I’ve written about in these pages over the past year: … [continue]

No Place to Hide

The news is not good. Even before last November’s elections, threats and attacks on synagogues, Jewish community centers, mosques, Islamic centers, and churches had been steadily increasing. Across the country, news reports recount anonymous bomb … [continue]

A Winter’s Tale of Curves and Shells

My strongest memory of visiting Henry Hobson Richardson’s Trinity Church in Boston is the sheer breadth of the apse in which the chancel resides amid glowing gold-colored walls.. It is a great sweep of a curve that generously yet gently arcs from one … [continue]

Between Darkness and Light

Louis Kahn might be best remembered for talking to bricks and asking what they wanted to be, but for the creators of sacred space Kahn’s most prescient observations are about light, light of the natural variety. “Architecture appears for the first … [continue]

Sacred Time, Sacred Space

The core of Abraham Joshua Heschel’s book The Sabbath is that the divine can never be found in space, but only in time. Heschel articulates this view of the sacred, based in the Torah and Jewish teaching, as outside of the control of human beings. … [continue]

Millennials’ Views of Religion Take a Dive

Millennials have spoken, and they don’t much care for organized religion. New research from the Pew Research Center confirms that a trend that has been obvious for several years has picked up speed: Millennials’ favorable view of churches and … [continue]

Both Heart and Womb

The atrocity of Paris taunts with its threat of hopelessness. With nearly 130 dead at this writing, it is the worst loss of life in the French capital since the Second World War. The latest slaughter at the hands of intolerance and extremism tempts … [continue]

Whose House is This?

Many designers, architects, artists, and craftspeople see their ultimate calling as the creation of home for humankind through the environments they help fashion. Of course, our day-to-day existence is often filled with the minutia of the making of … [continue]

Architect’s Hour of Power Patron

This spring religious architecture lost one of its high-profile patrons, Dr. Robert H. Schuller, who for years headed the Crystal Cathedral in Garden Grove, California. Schuller was an innovative minister in the Reformed Church in America. Sixty … [continue]

Come Right In

Perhaps the antenna was just more in-tune with the topic of accessibility, hospitality, and inclusivity, but while this issue was being produced it seemed that there was a buzz in the religious architecture world about this subject. We were careful … [continue]