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Hoosier Musings on the Road to Emmaus

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

USAFA Student Chapel(s)




This is the student chapel at the Air Force Academy. Actually, "chapels" would be more accurate, as it is quite the multi-use facility.








This is the main level, and the Protestant Chapel.











Immediately below is the Roman Catholic Chapel. The most notable difference in appointments, from a random worshipper's standpoint, is that Catholics get kneelers.






Next, we came to the Jewish chapel (I know this sounds odd, but that's what they call it). Just outside of the door is a framed case with a Torah scroll hidden and saved during the Holocaust.








Next door is the Buddhist chapel. A small, intimate space, and perfect for meditation. I liked the feel of it.

(no, I'm not jumping ship.)




I am told that they also have Orthodox and Muslim chapels, as well as undesignated space, but we did not see those.

5 Comments:

Anonymous Mark J. said...

...and a Muslim space, if I recall correctly, but we couldn't access that on the tour either.

June 02, 2008 11:40 AM  

Blogger Jane Ellen+ said...

Yep-- duly added. Thanks for the reminder.

June 02, 2008 11:56 AM  

Blogger The young fogey said...

I appreciate the Jet(sons)/Space Age go at Gothic but prefer today's post-modern return to traditional forms of course.

The RC chapel's not in a style I would have chosen nor as striking architecturally as the big Protestant space but I think it works. I like it because I can tell it was built for the old rite, very 1950s liturgical movement, even with a canopy/baldacchino. Imagine these vestments, facing liturgical east as shown here, using the Communion rail and singing a cappella chant (no piano) and there you are. :)

I imagine the Orthodox chapel might look like the Byzantine Rite one in the crypt of the RC National Shrine in DC.

I like the Buddhist space too.

June 05, 2008 8:53 PM  

Blogger Jane Ellen+ said...

You're right, YF, the RC space is not as dramatic; but it was just as large, really, and felt very comfortable as worship space. Mark had led worship in both spaces, and said he preferred serving there, too.

My only real criticism would be that I found the mosaic behind the altar to be visually distracting, in a way that even the most pervasive Orthodox iconography or RC statuary (common, where I grew up) is not. I don't know what it was, exactly, but something about all those little tiles (which seemed brighter in person) was too busy for my taste.

June 05, 2008 9:09 PM  

Blogger liturgy said...

Thanks for these photos
& for this reflection and site.
Please visit Liturgy
And please consider linking.
There’s even a video of mine you may be interested in embedding.
Let me know if you link so I link back.
Blessings

June 16, 2008 11:13 PM  

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