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A School Chapel on Long Island

St. Anthony’s High School, South Huntington, L.I.

“I have a general disgust for Catholic architecture since the 1950s,” says Brother Gary Cregan, the Franciscan friar who is principal of St. Anthony’s High School in South Huntington. The friar was quoted by the once-great New York Times in a 2008 article on the new chapel built by the Catholic school on Long Island, recently featured on the NLM blog. The Franciscans, according to the Times, “believe that the new chapel, with its soaring 30-foot ceilings, will teach teenagers that they are ‘worshiping God, not each other.'” Many of the chapel’s furnishings were bargain finds on eBay including the confessionals, the pews, a 110-year-old stained-glass window, and a century-old statue of St. Anthony. A new bell for the chapel’s tower would’ve cost $20,000, but Brother Gary (or “Mr. Cregan” as the newspaper referred to him) found an old one for $4,000.

This post was published on Sunday, July 18th, 2010 8:00 pm. It has been categorised under Architecture Church Featured New York and been tagged under , , .
  1. 19 July 2010
    12:20 am

    Bravo. The fresco and crucifix are stunning.

  2. Robin
    19 July 2010
    10:50 am

    Si sic sunt omnes!

  3. Mark R
    19 July 2010
    1:40 pm


  4. Kathleen
    24 July 2010
    1:29 pm

    So glad to see they didn’t succumb to the temptation to make one gigantic auditorium/cafeteria/chapel space the way they did when they renovated my old high school. Bravo to St. Anthony’s.

  5. B T Van Nostrand
    2 August 2010
    6:26 pm

    God bless Mr Cre -; er, Brother Gary.

  6. valeria kondratiev
    16 August 2010
    5:52 pm

    Absolutely amazing especially in suburban Long Island where tackiness reigns supreme. The students at that high school may be the only LI teenagers who get used to seeing Church architecture. Hopefully they bring friends along to visit.

  7. Br. Casimiro Kuypers
    2 September 2010
    3:19 pm

    About modern Church archetecture:
    Last year I was on holiday in my birthtown of Breda (in Holland)and noticed that the peter and Paul Church had been demolished, but instead there was something new. At first I thought it to be a sauna building.
    But no: it was a new smaller church. Getting into it I noticed a dozen little tables right at the entrance, with cups of coffee (sorry, coffee-cups) on the ready. Apparently it was a multifunctional thing. But no, Sunday mass was said, and afterwards people could have a nice get-together. With little ease this building could be tranformed into a sporting hall.
    In short it could be qualified with:
    “Holy water at the beginning, coffee to end up with.”
    A colourful poster about the coffee would have been nice.

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