Crystal Cathedral closing for transformation

Organ will be shipped to Spain for refurbishing

Organ will be shipped to Spain for refurbishing

The following comes from a Nov. 26 story in the Los Angeles Times.

The former Crystal Cathedral will close to the public as it undergoes a transformation from a space built as a television studio as much as a sanctuary into a Catholic cathedral, the church’s new owner, the Diocese of Orange, announced Tuesday.

Beginning Sunday, the newly named Christ Cathedral will be closed for construction as crews launch a $29-million effort to restore the more than 75,000-square-foot space.

The diocese has been working with liturgical consultants and architects to modify the cathedral built in the vision of the Rev. Robert Schuller into one that meets the requirements to serve as the headquarters for Orange County’s Catholic community of more than 1.2 million people.

“The beauty and inspiration evoked by the cathedral grounds and its architecture are only surpassed by the extraordinary communities of faith that now call this campus home,” Bishop Kevin Vann said in a statement.

“The cathedral will be an international center of faith and evangelization, a vessel for the love of God, a beacon of faith, a home for neighbor and traveler, and a sanctuary for the human spirit.”

The bishop announced in September that two architectural firms, Johnson Fain and Rios Clementi Hale Studios, were selected to lead the design process.

One of the first steps in the renovation will be to remove the pipe organ — said to be one of the largest in the world — so it can be shipped to Italy and refurbished in time for the cathedral’s reopening, set for 2016.

The renovation process of the 34-acre campus began in July, when the diocese took possession of the grounds from Schuller’s ministries, which had fallen into bankruptcy.

The renovations started with the Arboretum, the first sanctuary built by Schuller, which had a unique design that allowed for him to preach to a congregation inside as well as to people who sat outside in their cars, much like the Orange drive-in theater where his ministry began.

Later, Schuller broadcast his sermons worldwide from the Crystal Cathedral — a sprawling, open-aired fabrication of metal and glass that became closely tied to Schuller and his sunny theology.

The building was designed in the late 1970s by the noted architect Philip Johnson. It took more than two years to build, and stood 12 stories tall, with an exterior of more than 10,000 panes of mirrored glass.

To read the original story, click here.



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  1. Maryanne Leonard says:

    Let’s keep our fingers crossed – or better yet, pray for a vision to appear to them in a dream!

  2. Larry from R.I. says:

    Where’s the Tabernacle?????????

    • The tabernacle is right where the Blessed Sacrament is reserved.
      In Saint Peter’s Basilica, this means a lovely side chapel dedicated to prayer, set off from all the yammering tourists.
      In our parish church, this means right behind the Altar Of Sacrifice, because we have no tourists.
      It varies.

      • Some people live with the belief that unless the tabernacle is “front and center” then there is a problem. Pure bunkum of course.

        • Ann Malley says:

          Some people live with the belief that unless God Himself is at the center of their lives, there is a problem. Pure bunkum? I don’t think so.

          • R.B. Rodda says:

            Having the tabernacle located in the center of the sanctuary in no way ensures that God is the center of anyone’s life.

            As I said earlier, pure extremist bunkum.

          • Ann Malley says:

            It’s not insurance, R.B., it was an analogy. You are really a very literal individual aren’t you?

    • Maybe it will be located in it’s own Blessed Sacrament Chapel like it is at St. Peter’s Basilica?

      • Precisely.
        We come to Holy Mass to celebrate the Saced Liturgy — not to stare at a tabernacle.
        When the new bishop Karol Józef Wojtyła defied the communist regime of Poland and celebrated Christmas Mass in the city of Nowa Huta, he did not carry a tabernacle out to that cold field.
        He knew that Christ would be present in the Eucharist, which was distributed to the brave and faithful townspeople who had been denied a church by the communists.

  3. Does the Cathedral really need a two year renovation? Perhaps its age necessitates certain things be done. Roman Catholic Canon Law and related regulations probably require certain features in a Catholic Cathedral.

    Keep it to a minimum and use the difference to feed the hungry and house the homeless.

    Remember the Bishop of Bling. Let’s not repeat it it locally.

    • The money donated to refurbish Christ Cathedral was not to “feed the hungry and house the homeless.” Those that gave also no doubt gave to that cause as well.

      The “feed the hungry and house the homeless” argument is without merit.

      • The let’s hide the Tabernacle anywhere I want argument while mocking those who want Our Lord’s Truths to always be placed first and foremost as well as front and center has it’s historical roots in IWNS = I WILL NOT SERVE.

        • Your Fellow Catholic says:

          Except, Catherine, that there are nuances to be considered. When I was in my pre-catholic days, for example, I could never figure out what the purpose was of having a mass to consecrate more eucharist, when there was already eucharist there for us. It completely befuddled me. Once I realized that there could be altars off to the side where folks could worship the Blessed Sacrament 24 hours a day 7 days a week, THAT made sense to me. But having it on the altar while one is celebrating mass is something I could not then, and cannot now, really get my head around. If Jesus is already here and available for us, let’s not pretend that we need to go through this liturgy to make Jesus truly present. Jesus is already truly present!

          • Ann Malley says:

            There are other nuances to be considered, YFC, but there are also Catholic Truths that need to be taught – to non-Catholics – and reinforced for Catholics. IOW: (in other words) the mass shouldn’t be ‘dumbed down’ because others do not understand it. (And that is not a slam in any way.) People, all people, MUST be taught what these things mean in their entirety. If not, ALL will lose the fullness and become blind so as to not understand.

            I explained this to you in a previous post. One you never replied to. That yes, Our Lord Jesus is fully present in the Blessed Sacrament. But this you should know as well:

            John 14:8 – 12…Phillip said to Him, “Lord, show us the Father and it is enough for us.” Jesus said to him, “Have I been so long a time with you, and you have not known me? Phillip, he who sees me, sees also the Father. How cans’t thou say, “Show us the Father? Doest thou not believe that I am in the Father and the Father in me?”

            This question is directed at us, YFC. This means that not only is Our Lord Jesus truly present in the Blessed Sacrament, but also God the Father and the Holy Ghost. How so is the mystery of Faith. As in, “… what our senses fail to fathom,” from the Tantum Ergo.

          • YFC, Why would this glass tower of bling be any different when each little parish or school in a diocese is often run like it’s own autonomous little fiefdom of beliefs. Who is truly guarding the flock? There is often no unity or true understanding of the beauty and the purpose of the Teachings of our Catholic Faith. Parishes have been allowed to exist on partial truths at the expense of many who are left befuddled such as you claim. When our Catholic Faith is taught in it’s full expression, nuances are not necessary. Nuances enabled Bill Clinton the crafty but transparent loophole to say, “It depends on what your definition of IS is.” Nuances often protect error that is being coddled. Today each little parish often teaches it’s own nuance version of partial truths and it is not according to the authentic Teachings of the Catholic Church, it is according to what makes the least amount of waves when affecting the comfort zone of anyone or the least amount of damage to that collection basket. This is NOT the faith of our martyrs who chose death over ever offending God. We are currently facing an era of oncoming persecution and Catholics cannot afford the leisure of being befuddled. Father Hardon SJ warned us about the real attack that was to come and that attack was on the Blessed Sacrament. I hope you are not intimating or powerfully suggesting that the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, which is a re-presentation of the Last Supper as well as a re-enactment of Jesus’s Sacrifice on the Cross, is really not all that necessary. Please CLARIFY if that was what you meant. …Then neither of us will be pretending or confusing others.

          • YFC, We have shaped a generation of Catholics who think that all religions are equal because they have not been taught the faith. Our own bishop even chose to use the word mosque in a kind of comparison statement about prayers rising up to God when he wrote about this Glass Cathedral. We have shaped a whole generation of Catholics who voted for a man who promotes abortion and infanticide. YFC, When a cherished loved one asks you to do something in order to keep them very close to your heart, and to your thoughts, do you pretend that it is really not all that necessary and ignore them or simply pretend to just go through some meaningless motions because someone told you to do so?

            YFC writes. ” If Jesus is already here and available for us, let’s not pretend that we need to go through this liturgy to make Jesus truly present. Jesus is already truly present!”

            YFC, Was Jesus also present at the Last Supper when he said to his apostles…..


            Hæc quotiescúmque fecéritis, in mei memóriam faciétis. = “As often as ye shall do these things, ye shall do them in remembrance of me”

            YFC, I found this quote below and it is an important teaching quote to reflect on.

            “The liturgy of the ancient Roman Church emerged from the times of intense persecution and today, as Christians are more and more persecuted for their Catholic faith, they are attracted to the ancient Mass which helped to evangelize a world that has turned its back on Jesus Christ. As the Catechism of the Catholic Church succinctly says, “the liturgy itself generates cultures and shapes them.” (CCC, #1207)”

          • Your Fellow Catholic says:

            Catherine, I’m sure that no one but you misinterpreted my post in a same way you did such that it requires clarification. I really wish you would not read things into my posts that I don’t say and then demand that, for having said those things that I never said that I must therefore be obscuring the faith. I never said, nor did I even suggest, ” I hope you are not intimating or powerfully suggesting that the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, which is a re-presentation of the Last Supper as well as a re-enactment of Jesus’s Sacrifice on the Cross, is really not all that necessary. Please CLARIFY if that was what you meant. …Then neither of us will be pretending or confusing others.”

            What I attempted to relate to you is how liturgy, which is in part a teaching tool (lex orandi lex credendi), there can be things which don’t quite add up to people. Liturgy ought to be an unambiguous statement of our faith. I think the reason that most Churches moved the tabernacle to side altars is to avoid exactly the befuddlement of people like me. And please don’t go on quoting doctrine. I know what the doctrine is. I don’t need another lecture, thanks.

          • Ann Malley says:

            “What I attempted to relate to you is how liturgy, which is in part a teaching tool (lex orandi lex credendi), there can be things which don’t quite add up to people. ”

            That is precisely the point, YFC. How we pray is how we believe. That said, you don’t seem to believe and/or understand that God the Father and God the Holy Ghost are also present in the Blessed Sacrament. That must be why it was confusing to you, especially in your Protestant days, to understand the why behind having the Tabernacle front and center in Church…. and the priest face it instead of the people. (you said something to the effect of not understanding why you would offer Jesus to Jesus)

            Thing is, the Faith and the mysteries thereof are not there to ‘add up to the people.’ With that mentality, all that didn’t quite add up to the people should be sidelined. And why not if the Blessed Sacrament itself is sidelined? There is a correlation.

          • Ann Malley says:

            YFC cont:

            Firstly, the reasoning you present is human centric, not God centric. As if Truths were subject to shifting according to human understanding. When the reasoning you present is carried to its conclusions, one could have the philosophy that ‘if I don’t understand or it confuses me, truth be darned, it has to be removed or I just won’t get it or do it.’

            That’s not faith, YFC. That’s walking away from Christ when He explains the necessity of eating His flesh and drinking His blood as the required means of having life inside you. That is turning away from the ‘hard teaching’ because we just don’t get it. Or as is too often the case, we refuse to get it because we’re too hung up on the superiority of our own human reasoning and our all-knowing, infallible five senses.

            That said, Peter didn’t ‘get it’ when he and the Apostles stayed with Our Lord. And they were no better intellectually than those who walked away. What Peter and the Apostles did ‘get’ was that Jesus was the Son of God. That He held all answers. They believed….in HIM. So it didn’t matter if they didn’t quite understand precisely what He said.

            And they didn’t or else when Christ asked them why they remained, Peter would have explained as much. Instead, Peter simply professed Faith in Christ – that was it. And it was precisely this believing in Christ over the reasoning of the senses and human intellect that showed Peter’s faith.

  4. How about simply re-selling it? This thing is the epitome of bling, cubic-zirconia style.

    • Brian, you are 100% correct – Sell it along with the Cathedrals in Oakland & Los Angeles. Use the money to help the poor and not keep the Bishops in the lap of luxury. Stop their traveling all over the world and make them stay home and attend to the problems in their area.

    • Sad that this beautiful cathedral does not meet your personal architectural preferences.

      Millions will still love it nonetheless…

      • RB blindly proposes, “Millions will still love it nonetheless” but “Homo proponit sed Deus disponit!” “For the resolutions of the just depend rather on the grace of God than on their own wisdom; and in Him they always put their trust, whatever they take in hand. For man proposes, but God disposes; neither is the way of man in his own hands”. -Thomas a Kempis

        Another Tower of Babel & Bling built as a tribute to themselves!

        Douay-Rheims Catholic Bible, Book Of Genesis Chapter 11

        The tower of Babel. The confusion of tongues. The genealogy of Sem down to Abram.

        [1] And the earth was of one tongue, and of the same speech. [2] And when they removed from the east, they found a plain in the land of Sennaar, and dwelt in it. [3] And each one said to his neighbour: Come, let us make brick, and bake them with fire. And they had brick instead of stones, and slime instead of mortar. [4] And they said: Come, let us make a city and a tower, the top whereof may reach to heaven: and let us make our name famous before we be scattered abroad into all lands. [5] And the Lord came down to see the city and the tower, which the children of Adam were building.

        [6] And he said: Behold, it is one people, and all have one tongue: and they have begun to do this, neither will they leave off from their designs, till they accomplish them in deed. [7] Come ye, therefore, let us go down, and there confound their tongue, that they may not understand one another’ s speech. [8] And so the Lord scattered them from that place into all lands, and they ceased to build the city. [9] And therefore the name thereof was called Babel, because there the language of the whole earth was confounded: and from thence the Lord scattered them abroad upon the face of all countries. [10] These are the generations of Sem: Sem was a hundred years old when he begot Arphaxad, two years after the flood. [9] Babel: That is, confusion.

        • R.B. Rodda says:

          How long did you spend typing the above out?

          Like it or no, people WILL (and DO!) love Christ Cathedral — no matter how much that might anger you.

          • Ann Malley says:

            Time spent, R.B. Rodda, is often indicative of caring. And caring deeply. After all, time requires the giving of oneself. That said, although you may not agree with Catherine, you cannot discount the depth of true Faith and Christian charity with which she speaks.

  5. St. Christopher says:

    This is going to be a laugher — except for the sadness when yet another monstrosity to the ego of a bishop is branded as a “Catholic” church. Wait until the “explanations” are provided as to why there are no kneelers (or not everywhere, at least), why the tabernacle is in a “chapel,” why there are so few statues and religious paintings (although you can bet that there will be plenty of space for dancing), why the choir needs to be in front of the altar, just like the good old Protestants!, and why there are no confessionals — that sort of thing. “Brian S” is absolutely correct — it is time to sell this nutty purchase. But, wait, isn’t the Pope (who we must believe is at least trying to intercept the Holy Ghost’s direction at some level) saying that “real” authority must now be given to the Catholic episcopacy? Another truly awful idea (and no, no, a thousand times no, the Holy Ghost is not behind every idea that the Pope adopts, or initiates; many popes have said and done questionable things, sinful things). Just look at the Germans who have contorted beyond all reason the words of Francis to support their heresy of permitting twice-married Catholics to receive communion; notwithstanding what the Vatican says. Giving bishops even as much power as they presently claim is a calamitous mistake. The Papacy and Curia must be strengthened, not weakened, just as the Church must show itself to be Triumphalist now, and not just another flavor at the world’s gelato counter. The Crystal Cathedral is not, and will not be, a legitimate place of Catholic worship. But it might become a great venue for clown masses, dancing nuns, kumbaya events, and, perhaps, a “shared” space for “worship” with the Methodists, and, maybe, “witnessing” events of WomenPriests.

  6. Read past articles on this topic. It is actually much less costly to renovate than to start from scratch. It appeared to me from reading all the articles
    that this is in fact a wise purchase.

    • I’m sure Christ Cathedral will be absolutely beautiful following the remodeling but 2+ years is a very long time.

      I fully expect Pope Francis to visit the first year that it is open. What a grand, grand campus.

  7. @Larry, I think the 2-year period is needed because they’ll need to gut the interior. My guess is that they’ll want to turn the church 90 degrees around, since they’ll have to rip out the seating anyway. The existing seating doesn’t allow for the installation of kneelers

    • R.B. Rodda says:

      There really isn’t much to “gut” other than some theater seating. I suspect the pacer is the giant pipe organ that could well take 2 years to restore and reinstall.

      It would be truly sad if they revolved the layout by 90 degrees. Hideous actually. If they do that they will have failed.

  8. Will they be able to offer the Mass in the Arboretum? Will that be completed before 2015?

  9. Fr. Gregory Coiro, O.F.M.Cap says:

    Your photo s not the Hazel Wright Organ in the former Crystal Cathedral. Rather, it is the Rodgers digital organ purchased from Fred Swann, organist-emeritus of the Crystal Cathedral. Crystal Cathedral Ministries installed it in Shepherd’s Grove, the former St. Caliistus Church (my home parish), which is being leased from the Diocese of Orange. St. Callistus has moved into the Richard Neutra-designed Arboretum on the campus of Christ Cathdreal while the Philip Johnson-designed cathedral undergoes renovation.

    The Hazel Wright Organ was designed by the greatest organ virtuoso of the second half og the twentieth century, Virgil Fox. It was built by the Fratelli Ruffatti firm of Padua, Italy, where it is being shipped for refurbishment (not Spain). The organ incorporates the Aeolian-Skinner pipework that was built for Philharmonic Hall (now Avery Fisher Hall) of Lincoln Center for the Performing Ars in New York City, with the Ruffatti organ originally installed in Garden Grove Community Church (now the Arboretum), as well as other components. It is among the five largest church pipe organs in the world with over 16,000 popes.

    • Fr. Gregory Coiro, O.F.M.Cap says:

      …over 16,000 pipes. (Excuse the error, please.)

    • R.B. Rodda says:

      Terrific posting, thanks. How is your parish adjusting to the move to the Arboretum? How does it compare to your old parish church down the street?

      • Fr. Gregory Coiro, O.F.M.Cap says:

        @R.B.–I left St. Callistus over 40 years ago when I entered the Capuchin Franciscan Order. When I was in high school, I used to play the organ for the evening Mass on Sundays in the old St. Callistus Church which became the parish hall when the new church was built, the one now called “Shepherd’s Grove.” You can imagine how happy I am that as the parish community of Christ Cathedral, St. Callistus now has the beautiful Aeolian-Skinner pipe organ in the Arboretum and will be heir to the Hazel Wright Organ when the renovated Crisit Cathedral becomes St. Callistus’ new home.

        • R.B. Rodda says:


          I have absolutely no question that God played a HUGE part in delivering this beautiful campus to His Church. I cannot wait for the HR Pipe Organ to sing again! Thanks for your posting.

          • Catherine says:

            RB Rodda,

            Do you also feel that God played a HUGE part in delivering Loretta Sanchez as a campaign speaker to St. Callistus parish? There was never an apology or an admittance of injustice to Christ when the pastor allowed this abomination to take place at a St. Callistus Catholic Church. I realize that you are extremely thrilled and excited about having a larger venue to indoctrinate unsuspecting Catholics.

            View.. ‘You Tube Loretta Sanchez Starts Campaigning at a Prayer Vigil’

            The video shows Loretta’s entourage of female thugs trying to intimidate everyone into silence (shutting up) while calling this campaign meeting a so called “prayer vigil”. No wonder you are so very thrilled about this campus. RB God is not as pleased as you are trying to sell it when a rabid pro-abort, partial birth abortion, same sex marriage politician is invited to lie to Christ’s unsuspecting lambs, all while a bishop is sitting at the table. Once again the pastor of St. Callistus parish has NEVER admitted that this should not have taken place. What does it profit a man’s soul to strike a good business deal in purchasing a property when he in turn uses that property to strike directly back at Christ. Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI and Pope Francis both admitted that there IS serious and evil corruption within the Curia so when you try and sell this abomination as a Vatican approved good, just remember the VATILEAKS SCANDAL and may God deliver us from the scourge of buying larger and cheaper properties in order to indoctrinate many of the very same evils that helped to cause a Pope to leave his reign.

        • Catherine says:

          Father Coiro,

          Do you agree that pro abortion, partial birth abortion, and same sex marriage advocates and activists should be invited and allowed by pastors to indoctrinate unsuspecting sheep at St. Callistus or any other parish? Please respond. Father Coiro, Should a pastor publicly apologize for allowing such a meeting to take place on Church property in order to correctly defend the teachings of the Catholic faith?

  10. My first thought was some construction workers are going to have jobs. We put people to work and we get a church . Thanks be to God.

  11. Bhp Vann seems firmly set on keeping and “Catholicizing” this Modernist monument to nascent 1970s Protestant televangelism.

    I can only urge him and his diocesan advisors and staff to please reconsider this project, sell the Crystal Cathedral property to the highest bidder, and hire real Catholic church designers, architects, paid contractors and volunteer builders to erect a truly worthy Catholic cathedral church for the diocese of Orange which will stand as a lasting monument to the Catholic Faith and the faith, genius, and industry of the Catholics of the Orange diocese.


    • And, FourMarks, what is a Catholic cathedral to look like? What are real Catholic church designers? You can’t use volunteer builders for something like this. Liability insurance alone would be too much. It is obvious that you are not a construction management expert. Anyway, I have been in thousands of Catholic churches, and not one is alike and most don’t conform to any specific format. What is a Catholic church building? Please tell me!

      • FourMarks says:

        Bob One- You have only to do a brief review of the last 2,000 years of the history of the Church and church architecture, up through the year A.D. 1960, to know what a Catholic church does and should look like. Although Modernistic design elements were starting to appear in otherwise traditional Catholic churches as early as the 1930s, the floodgates of Modernist church design and construction were initially cracked open in 1950s with the wave of new church construction after World War II, and then fully opened in the wake of Vatican Council II. I recommend you read “Ugly As Sin” by Michael Rose.

        • R.B. Rodda says:

          Sad that you would cite Mike Rose (a bookkeeper by trade) as someone anyone would listen to. He’s an ignorant polemicist.

          Like it or not, Gothic was once heavily criticized. So was California Mission. The bottom line is that CC is objectively beautiful no matter how much you might personally dislike it.

          • FourMarks says:

            R. B. Rodda- Your sneering ad hominem attack on Michael Rose (“a bookkeeper by trade”) reveals more about you than Mr. Rose or his book; it’s clear you don’t consider yourself ignorant, but you are surely the biggest polemicist on CCD. Regardless of Mr. Rose’s job or profession, his book contains clear analysis and objective truth about the radical changes in Catholic church architecture in the 20th century, especially after Vatican II.

            Not surprisingly, you distort and even invert the truth of the widespread aesthetic criticism of the CC. If the CC was an “objectively beautiful” building of any architectural vintage, style or genre, I would not dislike it, I would praise it, at least aesthetically. As it is, the CC and it’s accompanying office buildings are not inherently beautiful, nor are they inherently ugly, they are mainly utilitarian in design, purpose and construction, and industrial in appearance. Again, the entire complex was not conceived or designed as a church, much less a Catholic cathedral church, but a television studio and administrative complex for a Protestant televangelism business. If you think the CC is beautiful, you’re entitled to your opinion, but don’t expect everyone, or even most people, to agree; “beauty” is not objective, it is subjective, and has tangible and intangible aspects.

            I believe the main underlying issue with the CC controversy is the spiritual propriety of the Catholic Church acquiring buildings designed and used by non-Catholics, and converting them for use as consecrated buildings for Catholic worship, regardless of their aesthetics. Instances of appropriation and conversion of non-Catholic buildings to churches are rare in Church history, although not unheard of; the conversion of the pagan Pantheon in Rome is a notable example from antiquity.

    • R.B. Rodda says:

      It’s a done deal…

  12. The purchase of the Crystal Cathedral by the Diocese of Orange was a great deal. The diocese probably saved $50m buying the campus rather than building their own cathedral in Santa Ana. That saved money will end up being available for Catholic charities, education and care of elderly priests and sisters. Anyone who visited the Crystal Cathedral in the last 5 years could easily see that the church and buildings were becoming run-down because the ministries were going bankrupt and didn’t even have the funds to re-upholster the frayed and dirty church seats. So no one should be surprised that the diocese has to spend some money to make the cathedral Catholic and take care of long-term maintenance issues. Instead of jumping to ill-informed conclusions about how the diocese is spending money, people should do a bit of research before making self-righteous comments criticizing others.

    • R.B. Rodda says:

      Thanks for your posting. I suspect most of the negative comments are from people who have never been anywhere near Christ Cathedral. Yes, it was a great deal.

      My huge concern is that by trying to make it more “Catholic”, the diocese will ruin what is truly a beautiful building.

      • ” *My* huge concern is that by trying to make it more “Catholic”, the diocese will *ruin* what is truly a beautiful building.” = Beauty is in the eye of the beholder’s destructive agenda. = IOW …. ME ME ME and not the salvation of souls.

        Christ did not die on a cross to redeem a glass bling tower. Christ came to redeem men (all sinners) who are on the path of ruining themselves.

        The systematic ruining of the Fullness of Truth is NEVER a beautiful thing no matter how much renovating lipstick you use to try and conceal it.

        • Your Fellow Catholic says:

          Catherine, do you really believe we dispute your saying “Christ did not die on a cross to redeem a glass bling tower. Christ came to redeem men (all sinners) who are on the path of ruining themselves.” ?

          Frankly, I think the Crystal cathedral is a shame waiting for bad design to appear on the scene. But I wouldn’t fall on my sword to oppose it, as so many here do. But you go even further with your insinuation that Christ himself has a stake in whether it stands or falls.

          No one has claimed that Christ died to save the Crystal Cathedral!

        • R.B. Rodda says:

          You need to get over your burning hatred of Christ Cathedral because it does not meet your personal taste of what YOU feel a cathedral should be.

          You don’t seem to realize that it’s your ego and not CC that is the problem.

          • You’ve got the biggest ego in this place, Rodda. While this glitz and glam obviously meets YOUR personal taste, your appeal to the lumpen proletariat, “millions” of whom will “love it”, while bashing individual, real-life people who do not is hilarious. Clearly, you like people best in the abstract, in large groups, with their individuality checked at the door.

          • R.B. Rodda says:

            @Brian S.

            Get over your ego and your belief that people should defer to your personal taste.

            It makes no difference if I like the CC or not. What counts is that it was approved by the Holy See — and like it or not, it’s an objectively beautiful campus.

            Yes, you burn with anger because the CC does not match your personal taste but that’s the extend of it. It doesn’t meet your taste, you’re angry yet in no way is it in any way inappropriate as a Catholic cathedral. That’s the reality you need to face.

        • Ann Malley says:

          “…The systematic ruining of the Fullness of Truth is NEVER a beautiful thing no matter how much renovating lipstick you use to try and conceal it.”

          Well said, Catherine. Sadly, it seems that Holy Mother Church is looked upon more and more as an aging wife that needs to step up Her appearance via face lift, sexy/youthful clothes, and modern lingo if she’s ever going to compete with the increasing appeal of ‘other women.’ As if Christ Himself were a husband with a wandering eye instead of Faithfulness itself that looks upon the silvering hair and lines of patience and concern as badges of honor and the utmost fidelity.

          We treat our Mother with such disrespect. And all the renovations in the world cannot masque that.

          • Catherine says:

            “We treat our Mother with such disrespect. And all the renovations in the world cannot masque that.”

            Excellent post Ann Malley!

          • This is a very inappropriate and offensive analogy.

          • R.B. Rodda says:

            Again, get over your own ego…

            You personally don’t like the CC. That’s too bad. But to suggest supporting the purchase and the remodel is wrong is pure bunkum.

            We get that you don’t like the structure, but the rest is merely your taste/opinion. I sincerely hope that one day you’ll realize that.

  13. To all the critics who think that the money should be given to the poor:

    What have YOU done for the poor lately?

    • El Gato – the question is what have the Bishops done for the poor for the last 50 years? My hard earned money should be used for the poor & not keeping these Bishops (and the Vatican for that matter) in the lap of luxury. Thank about it!!!

      • R.B. Rodda says:

        Your “hard earned money” would not go to the purchase or renovation of the CC unless you specifically made a donation for the project.


        • R.B., I think that you better stop kidding your self when it comes to money and these Bishop spending only for one purpose. They do what they want with our donations specified or not. As I stated above all these Cathedrals should be sold and the money used for the poor. “Sell your goods and come follow me” not “Buy your goods and give them to me”. The Church is declining due to lack of leadership from the top on down and buying/building Cathedrals is not helping maters.

          • R.B. Rodda says:

            Stop lying. The $$$ for the CC is coming from specific donations not weekly plate donations.

            The Church is actually BOOMING in OC.


    • Your Fellow Catholic says:

      Well, oh dear catty one I have worked hard to change systems that keep certain classes of people perpetually poor. To me, it is not enough to give money to the poor, one must change the circumstances which created their poverty in the first place.

      • Catherine says:

        YFC writes: “Well, oh dear catty one I have worked hard to change systems that keep certain classes of people perpetually poor.” = Lack of humility

        “It was pride that changed angels into devils; it is humility that makes men as angels.” — Saint Augustine

        YFC, The poverty of spiritual neglect is the greatest poverty of all. You HAVE worked even harder to undermine and change the authentic Teachings of the Catholic Church in order to keep un-catechized Catholics perpetually impoverished.

  14. I have been looking at the Holy Family Cathedral and this building on Google Maps.
    The current cathedral looks like a parish church, which is fine, but one expects more from a cathedral.
    One can’t deny that this is a spectacular building snd grounds. Where or how else could the Catholic Church glorify God so relatively inexpensively?
    Laus Deo

    • R.B. Rodda says:

      Holy Family WAS a parish church. When the diocese was created, a proper cathedral was never constructed. There has been a long-standing effort to build a cathedral on property purchased by the diocese but this is a far less expensive and beautiful option.

  15. Siollan Murphy says:

    I love that the Crystal Cathedral is actually going to be a cathedral. Seems pointless to change the name, particularly to something that’s one syllable shy of what it was (and will probably always be) called.

    It’s not the most remarkable building by Philip Johnson, but it’s still a signature work by one of the greatest architects of the 20th century (and Richard Neutra even more so).

    It says a lot that one of the most iconic mega churches is an ephemeral blink in the eye of Catholicism. Love it.

    • R.B. Rodda says:

      Very well said.

      It’s so sad to watch the burning hatred for this gorgeous structure (and campus) by some here based on nothing more than their personal beliefs of what a cathedral should look like. The ignorance and arrogance of some of the attacks are deeply sad to witness.

      • Maryanne Leonard says:

        Arby, oh, excuse me, I mean R.B., just because your admiration for this “gorgeous” structure is not shared by others, why do you persist in personal attacks against anyone who dares to voice an opinion that differs from yours? Your approach does not endear your cause to anyone reading your posts, but rather causes others, who in this case happen to constitute the majority, to associate a building we find appalling with mean-spirited attacks that are also appalling.

        When you choose your words up to represent publicly anything whatsoever that has the name of Christ associated therewith, please seek to express yourself a good deal more kindly and charitably in order to be deemed more worthy to have elected yourself to so do with honor.

      • Dislike of this TV-created, Emerald City wanna-be glam queen is “burning hatred”? What a silly thing to say.

        I think it is unattractive, but before the Catholic Church spent $50M for it (probably a good deal as a real-estate transaction, I admit) and promised to spend another $30 M on it, in a mistaken attempt to turn it into something it isn’t, I didn’t give it a moment’s thought, let alone hate it. Hatred toward a structure? Odd notion….

        Really, I do think the Bishop must be paying you to say these things.

        • R.B. Rodda says:

          Again YOUR personal taste — which means absolutely nothing.

          What matters is that the Holy See approved the sale and that it is indeed an objectively beautiful campus — no matter how much you personally dislike it.

          • Well, we all have our aesthetic opinions, R.B. And, as usual, those with money and power get to build what they like. So congratulations, for being on the winning side this time.

            It is a shame that those with power and money – and their coutiers – insist not only on their way, but in sneering at those who do not.

          • R.B. Rodda says:

            @Brian S:

            What part of “the Holy See approved the sale” don’t you understand?

            You also won’t accept the fact that while you personally detest the design of CC it is an OBJECTIVELY beautiful building in the eyes of millions including a great many design professionals.

      • RB – it’s not hatred for this structure it’s the waste of money to buy it that could have been used for other worthwhile things like helping the poor and not sending a organ to Spain for repair. I am sure that Christ did not have in mind these outrageous buildings when he started his Church. You must understand that these Bishops are buying/building these places so that history will remember their name. That is a plain and simple fact.

        • R.B. Rodda says:


          First, the diocese is growing, it’s never had an actual cathedral and it needs one. Buying this one not only saved money compared to building a new one, a far better structure was realized than what would have been built.

          Second, those paying for the cathedral did so because they wanted to. It was their choice. You have absolutely no idea if they did or did not give money to other worthy causes. If they didn’t, you have no idea if they would have, had they not given to the cathedral fund. Absolutely none.

          Your “argument” is continually used by those who wish to attack that which they do not personally like.

  16. Can one make a silk purse out of a sows ear? Ave Maria Purrissima!

  17. If you believe in God, you will accept His Will. Christ Cathedral is His; always was. The Israelites spent 40 years in the desert for refusing to go where the Lord had prepared a place for them.

    • R.B. Rodda says:

      “…always was…”

      I very much agree. God made this happen from the very beginning.

      • Anonymous says:

        I think the Cathedral is awesome. I often prayed that it would become a Catholic Church that would draw others to Christ.

        • R.B. Rodda says:

          Same here. I used to joke about it with family and friends. When I first heard the diocese was considering it, I felt goosebumps.

          I think it will be a GREAT asset for the Church.

  18. I suspect that “objective beauty” is no more than what you like, RB.

    How is beauty “objectively” determined? Please share!

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