But anyways, near at the back of the Wanderer there was a note and two photographs of a rennovation performed on St. Mark's Church in Peoria, Illinois. Here's what they did, before and after:
OK I tricked you. Actually, it's not "before and after"; it's "after and before." The church had, at some point, been Cranmerized and turned into the ugly white ghost in the second photo immediately above, but they went back and fixed it.
Yes, the top picture is the "before," and that's a NEW high altar and murals ornamenting the sanctuary. And yes, that was all done just recently. And no, it's not unique; there's a similar project going on in Bishop Jenky's cathedral in Peoria right now.
Although I don't know much about art, it looks to me as though the firm's painting is in a Beuronese style, which some people object to because it was a minimalist baby-step towards the modernist disaster in liturgical art. However, why would one object to moving back towards that style, either as a worthy style in itself for our age, or as a big first step back to development of art from more traditional forms? Frankly, Philistine though I am, I do recognize that a new church, even a restoration of a traditional church that has been thoroughly Cranmerized, cannot and should not be an exact copy of a Baroque or Renaissance or Gothic form. The lavish detail and richness of the high point in those schools, while they're a good starting point, shouldn't be the end-all, be-all of today's ecclesiastical art or architecture. They should be carefully preserved where they exist, and lamented where they've been destroyed; and they should be the firm foundation for new art, but we can't simply build replica churches of 400 or even 100 years ago. Doing so is bad taste. The Beuronese style, to this fellow with almost no training in such things, seems to work well in avoiding the temptation to build replicas, while preserving something of the sacred.
Anyways, I've digressed. As for the folks at Murals by Jericho, wow! Three cheers for Bp. Jenky and his pastor at St. Marks, and the folks who are funding that work. I can't imagine they're having much trouble filling the pews in Peoria, like they are in Rochester.