The ancient basilicas of the Roman Empire, intended for administrative, commercial and judicial functions, gave their shape to the first buildings of Christian worship.
Christianity adapted that pagan heritage to its own needs with the greatest of ease, giving over the courtyard to the catechumens who were not allowed enter, the triumphal arch to the processions in honour of the victorious Christ who triumphed over death, the judicial apse to Christ the Pantocrator, and the name itself Basilica, an abbreviation of basilica domus - the house of the basileus (king) to the house of Christ the King.
In the solemn vigil of Christ the King, the Benedictine monks of Saint Paul's Outside the Walls will celebrate the Divine Regality by meditating on elements of the basilica's art and the sacred music of the "Basilica Domus".
Wednesday, November 22, 2006
Another Roman Liturgy...
The Benedictines at St Paul's Outside the Walls seem to promise quite an evening on Saturday with their 'Solemn Vigil of Christ the King' - starting at 8pm from the Basilica Courtyard. Their invite says: