Pilgrim’s Progress

I remember it being a very hot day. I had traveled with friends and colleagues this past April on a pilgrimage to the ruins of Chichen Itza, Mexico, one of the places on my architect's bucket list. Now I stood at the threshold of this monumental … [continue]

The “S” Word

A few weeks ago I was invited to make some remarks at a gathering at Cornell University's New York City Center to open an evening panel discussion by architects and academicians on “Space, the Sacred, and the Imagination.” The event being held was … [continue]

Litmus Test

The other day, in the Faith & Form LinkedIn discussion group, a group member brought up the topic of the fealty of those who work with congregations on architecture and art projects. He wanted to know if he might not be considered for a … [continue]

The Gift That Keeps Taking

I'm on the Buildings and Grounds Committee of my church. Recently an email from our committee chair let us know that a parishioner had come forward to donate an irrigation system for our memorial garden. The chair wanted the committee's feedback on … [continue]

Betty’s Way

It is difficult to argue with a 92-year-old. When Betty Meyer told me she had decided to retire her Faith & Form column, “Just One More Thing,” I protested and tried to talk her out of it. But Betty has more than earned the privilege to stop. … [continue]

Mosque and State

What role should the mosque (or the church, or the temple, or any religion) play in the modern state? For Nasser Rabbat, Islamic architecture scholar and director of the Aga Khan Program for Islamic Architecture at the Massachusetts Institute of … [continue]

Keep It Local

Recent studies document the ongoing decline of organized, mainline religious groups, while the number of people who describe themselves as spiritual but not necessarily religious continues to grow . This is not good news for hierarchical … [continue]

“Dear God, Can We Talk?”

For most of the summer we watched an oil well gush in the depths of the Gulf of Mexico. A disaster in slow motion, every day for weeks it took its toll on wildlife, recreation, and livelihoods around the gulf. On top of the oil spill, we poured … [continue]

Mixed Messages

The name of this journal suggests that there is a strong connection between faith and form, that the environments we create for religious purposes — the art and the architecture of where we meet to worship or to celebrate our belief — always reflect … [continue]

No Minarets, Please, We’re Swiss

The 21st century’s first decade, a span of ten years marked with rising religious fundamentalism, intolerance, and sectarian violence around the world, closed with a new ban on minarets in Switzerland. Huh? That’s right. At the end of November … [continue]