On Tuesday evening, CC invited me to join her for the inaugural mass at the newly renovated St Patricks, Soho Square. It’s a truly beautiful space, and with the long evening sunshine streaming through the windows, the light inside was incredible. Even rammed to the gills as it was (we stood for the full two hours right at the back of the church) it felt incredibly spacious.
Sacred spaces are rare in cities, places where as soon as you step inside, you feel a desire to be silent, to slow down, to stare, to sit and reflect.
In his homily, Archbishop Vincent Nichols expressed this feeling perfectly:
‘…the beauty of this church opens for every heart a pathway to the Lord. So often our contact with other people is filled with words: those of argument and persuasion, claims and counter-claims, as we try to fashion a way of living together. Yet, as many have commented, the testimony of beauty is the one which today most eloquently calls us…’
I’m in the business of words, but ultimately, it’s not my chatter, or the written record of my thoughts that has the power to inspire or lift the mind and heart to think about greater things. Only beauty has the effect of rendering the ordinary, the busy and the urban into something sacred and holy.