Preparing a Holy Place of Encounter
In our churches and worship spaces we prepare a holy place of encounter. Liturgical celebrations and rites enable more than a brush with the divine; they become bridges to the sacred. The liturgical environment exists to serve this experience and does so in various ways through works of art.
Sacred art in service to the liturgy comes in many forms. While the particular focus of this guide is the creation and installation of suspended art much of the content can be applied to the planning, design and creation of all types of sacred art.
The pages of this website progress from the reasons for including Liturgical art to preliminaries of space assessment and choosing rigging systems, to the enriching creative process of making art for worship, and finally to its installation. The content herein reflects the expertise of area experts and other creative minds supported by both the theological and practical position of the Catholic Church which has always encouraged and supported the creation of sacred art for liturgy.
“The fine arts are considered to rank among the noblest expressions of human genius. This judgment applies especially to religious art and to its highest achievement, which is sacred art. By their very nature, both of the latter are oriented to God’s boundless beauty, for this is the reality which these human efforts are trying to express in some way.”
—Sacrosanctum Concilium Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy), no. 122 
 Austin Flannery, O.P., ed. Sacrosanctum Concilium, 4 December, 1963, in Vatican Council II, Vol. 1: The Conciliar and Postconciliar Documents, (Costello Publishing Company, 1975) 34.
IMAGE: Washington National Cathedral Centennial Celebration. Copyright ©Nancy Chinn