Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Walking through St. Francis de Sales Oratory: Odds and Ends

A few more items of note from St. Francis de Sales Oratory in St. Louis.

Jesus is ready for the Year of Mercy!
Good Shepherd window.
A view from the Infant of Prague transept.
An unused confessional booth sitting in the transept. Its brother booth rests in the other transept.
My Latin isn't good enough to know what this is all about.
A closer look.
Roofed pulpit.
The in-use confessionals are positioned rather awkwardly in the middle of the nave. There is another on the opposite side, and it can be grimly humorous to watch penitents walk back and forth between them during Mass as priests come and go according to their duties.
This and the following grotesques appear to be representations of the kinds of workmen who built this temple.

A wide view of the baptistery. Eight-sided, according to tradition.
A closer view shows a little more of the golden color in the mosaics.
One last farewell look at the oratory before I leave.

Definitely worth a visit, lace and all!


  1. Dunno why, but this church looks so Christmassy...

  2. The latin document confirms the aggregation of a Sodality of the BVM under the title of the Perpetual Help and St Alphonse de Liguori to the already existing sodality in a parish of the Redemptorist fathers in Rome and the concession of the indulgences attached to this sodality.

  3. 1. One wishes more churches had traditional baptisteries (and we could put an end to the modern practice of sticking an oversized fountain at the nave entrance). SFDS has an exquisite one.

    2. "The in-use confessionals are positioned rather awkwardly in the middle of the nave." And yet this is common in so many churches of that era. And too often, the side aisles are left so narrow, that it's difficult not to hear snippets of the confession from the nearby pews. This is not a problem at SFDS yet, since the seating capacity is so large that people are able to avoid those pews; but I do hope that future renovation plans reconsider placement of the confessionals. (but they have a long list of improvements to get to before that).

    3. Speaking of renovations, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch actually had a story up yesterday on St. Francis de Sales, a feature story on the restoration of the church's bells, which have long been silent until now. Worth a look:

    1. Oh good. Maybe they'll be playing the bells when I'm in St. Louis next.

    2. You mean as a warning signal: The RadTrad is coming? :)

    3. Speaking of baptisteries, can this one in St. Louis be considered as a "separate baptistery" in the sense of 1962 rubrics so that on Easter Vigil one can indeed bless the baptismal font (and baptize there if needed) rather than a bucket?

    4. I couldn't say for sure, but the baptistery is in the rear of the oratory, and there is a clear separation between it and the nave. You have to step up into it.