Today we commemorate the Dedication of the Lateran Basilica in Rome. Contrary to some belief, St Peters is not the seat of the bishop of Rome, i.e. the Pope, since it is the home of the universal church, not just one person. The seat of the bishop of Rome is the Archbasilica of St John which is situated in the Lateran section. It actually lies outside of the Vatican City but is part of the Vatican by historical agreement.
It is a most ornate and beautiful basilica. The apse is stunningly decorated in gold and magnificent artwork. This raises the thorny question, often expressed by protestant Christians, of why so much money is spent on church buildings. After all, it is argued, that money could be better spent on feeding the poor.
The simple answer is that Catholic churches are not just places of worship; they also house the tabernacle. In other words, there is a REAL presence of God in the building which does not exist in other churches. And God deserves nothing less than the best. The full answer is quite detailed so I have included a link (there are others) for anyone who wants to read more in depth about this topic: https://catholicchristianity.wordpress.com/2013/02/17/the-beautiful-church-why-must-catholic-churches-be-so-ornate/
A final comment, taken from the first reading of today from 1 Cor.3:16, is that “You are the temple of God..” The privilege of carrying God within us every day and everywhere should be a constant reminder of our role as disciples of Christ. However we prize the House of God should be mirrored in the way that we carry Jesus in our daily lives. Our Catholic Christian example should never be compromised by the standards of modern society.
Have a wonderful day, filled with God’s presence.
God bless and stay safe.
Dc Mike & the team.
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