Does your parish have a beautiful church with all of the art and sculpture still intact? Are you beginning or in the middle of a renovation of your church? Have you been through a renovation and thought that not everything was completely above board? Are you simply interested in the tactics used by many church renovators to convince parishes that all of the grandeur must be removed to make way for a barren church-in-the-round? Then this book is for you.
Michael Rose is a Cincinnati architect who for years has been studying the "blueprint" used by church renovators as they move from parish to parish. He has discovered that many of these renovators are much more interested in promoting a personal agenda than in being faithful to the teachings of the Church.
In this book, Rose shows where the current renovators get their inspiration (it isn't from Catholic theology). He also shows how the committee document Environment in Art and Catholic Worship, declared by many renovators as official Church law, has roots that grow far from the Catholic Church.
After showing where the renovators get their ideas, Rose walks the reader through all the steps of a renovation and shows how the parish is unknowingly guided towards a specific end even though the process is always declared to be one of "dialogue and consensus".
One of the most useful sections of the book is an analysis of statements frequently made by renovators. Rose takes each statement and shows where the renovator and the Church differ in their theology.
The last section of the book contains a list of resources to assist parishioners in resisting the changes sought by these types of renovators including websites, books, documents and quotes.
Having personally been through a parish renovation, I can say that Rose might as well have been writing the book specifically about our parish. The only thing that I believe the book lacks is a "before and after" photo section to make it clear to parishioners just how destructive some of these "renovations" can be. I highly recommend this book to all who are interested in preserving the heritage of their churches so that they may hand it on to their children intact.