Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Progress on the Chapel

If you have been following the work on our chapel these photos might interest you. This one is taken from the choir loft and shows Gregory, who has just been accepted by the Archdiocese to train for priesthood, marking out the apse before applying the gold paint. You can see the stencils for the text of the inscription on the floor.

Four coats of gold paint later we have the horizontal 'tramlines' ready to take the text of the inscription. The chapel is already beginning to elicit a few "wows" from people who come to visit - and not only those who saw it before!

This picture gives you some idea of how the inscription is being applied to the apse. First of all we had to settle on a passage that would be both appropriate and also just the right length for our apse. It also had to allow for a break in the middle without detracting from the meaning of the text. Then each letter had to be printed individually and turned into a stencil. Next the stencils had to be put together to form the words with a consistent spacing between the letters. Finally they had to be fixed to the wall with just the right distance between them ready for painting.

The work isn't yet finished and you can see the stencils are still up but this picture gives you an idea of what it will look like eventually. The inscription reads: "Duc in altum et laxate retia vestra in capturam" - launch out into the deep and pay out your nets for a catch! Pope John Paul II used the phrase Duc in altum to encourage us to proclaim the faith boldly at the beginning of this third Christian millennium. The inscription seemed appropriate because it both captures the need to evangelise and to be ready to receive vocations and also ties in with the fact that Whitstable is a fishing town with its own working harbour.

We still have a long way to go so watch out for more updates!


Peter Worth said...

It would have made more sense to have had the phrase in English so it could be clearly and easily understood - in my opinion.

Fr Stephen said...

Thank you Peter. I find that explaining the meaning of the text to visitors enables them to understand it on a number of deeper levels. Forty seven characters also seemed to fit better than the translation.

Peter Worth said...

Well you would not need to explain the phrase if it was in English because it would be immediately understandable, plus I doubt you are always there to explain it.