Elements old and new are often commingled in our church furnishings. The noble simplicity of the Roman rite is exemplified by spare decoration, which allows the altar and tabernacle to have pride of place, serving both personal devotions outside of the liturgy as well as communal worship in the offering of the holy Mass. Note that the crucifix, not pictured, is suspended prominently from the arch above the sanctuary.
The altar can be approached from both sides, providing for celebrations both ad orientem and versus populum.
(Elements of Continuity is an occasional series of photo essays which explore the relationship between the living and organic nature of the Roman rite and the sacred spaces in which it is celebrated. Comments welcomed.)
Photo: Saint Mary of the Assumption sanctuary, Upper Marlboro, Md. by MCITL.
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