Author Topic: Churches in Mechelen, Belgium ... 5 down, 18 to go.  (Read 655 times)

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Offline Fiji

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Churches in Mechelen, Belgium ... 5 down, 18 to go.
« on: February 22, 2013, 05:14:44 AM »
Mechelen is one the larger cities in Belgium at a little over a quarter of a million inhabitants. Currently it has 23 (Catholic) churches. However, later this month, four of those will be permanently close. Lack of priests, lack of sheeple and the cost of maintenance have convinced the diocese to close these plus a fifth one. There's still urgent maintenance work ongoing in that one, basically to keep the whole damn thing from collapsing.
Last year something similar happened in Lier (smaller city, 45K people) and then there was some grumbling about the churches being converted to other uses ... notably, in one case, converting it into a mosque.
In this case, the diocese has yet to actually decide to sell them off. But here, people are actually calling for them to be converted to secular uses. Or, for the ugly ones to be simply torn down.
Now Lier is a bit more conservative (or should I say 'parochial') than Mechelen, still, I do see this as progress ... and this in just one year.

I SO hope Belgium adopts the German system of religious taxing. I wonder what percentage would still officially remain Catholic ... 25%? 20%? Much less than the 50% that's being claimed today, at any rate.
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Offline Hatter23

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Re: Churches in Mechelen, Belgium ... 5 down, 18 to go.
« Reply #1 on: February 22, 2013, 09:26:39 AM »
Some people's ugly is some pleople's beautiful. Personally, I am big fan of Googie architecture, and, paradoxically, one of the most common examples still surviving is churches.
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Offline Shandi

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Re: Churches in Mechelen, Belgium ... 5 down, 18 to go.
« Reply #2 on: February 22, 2013, 03:15:43 PM »
Same here in Germany, in smaller communities the´ve turned churches into restaurants, concert halls etc. And there will be more. Concerning the religious taxing: it doesn´t work exactly the way it should due to the fact that most religious institutions are paid through the general taxing, including all non-members. That´s what really drives me insane, I´m paying for stuff I really don´t want to be spread around.
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Offline Ambassador Pony

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Re: Churches in Mechelen, Belgium ... 5 down, 18 to go.
« Reply #3 on: February 22, 2013, 04:19:31 PM »
Burn mother fucker, burn.

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Offline Fiji

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Re: Churches in Mechelen, Belgium ... 5 down, 18 to go.
« Reply #4 on: February 25, 2013, 05:46:07 AM »
I hope[1] that religious taxing would be introduced on a one-one basis. You're Catholic? Your tax goes to Catholics. You're Jewish? Your tax goes to the Jewish council. You're 'none of the above'? Your tax goes to secular organizations (probably Doctors without borders and the like).

I did notice some converted churches when on holiday in the Trier-Cochem-Sankt Wendel area last year. And that's supposed to be one of the more religious parts of Germany (or so I've been told). Seems Belgium still has some ways to go before we're at the German level of getting rid of religion.
 1. though, Belgian politics being what they are, that's mostly against hope
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Offline screwtape

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Re: Churches in Mechelen, Belgium ... 5 down, 18 to go.
« Reply #5 on: February 25, 2013, 08:48:42 AM »
Some people's ugly is some pleople's beautiful. Personally, I am big fan of Googie architecture, and, paradoxically, one of the most common examples still surviving is churches.

And bowling alleys.
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Offline Fiji

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Re: Churches in Mechelen, Belgium ... 5 down, 18 to go.
« Reply #6 on: February 25, 2013, 09:09:10 AM »
^^  can you imagine the acoustics of a bowling alley inside an old church? Earmuffs required, methinks! ;)
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Offline Hatter23

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Re: Churches in Mechelen, Belgium ... 5 down, 18 to go.
« Reply #7 on: February 25, 2013, 10:25:54 AM »
^^  can you imagine the acoustics of a bowling alley inside an old church? Earmuffs required, methinks! ;)

Actually I wished to so that, if I had the money. There was a church for sale on the main street in the Hamden neighborhood in Baltimore, which prides itself on an off beat sort of Soho vibe, and I thought "Our Lady of the 7 - 10 Split"
An Omnipowerful God needed to sacrifice himself to himself (but only for a long weekend) in order to avert his own wrath against his own creations who he made in a manner knowing that they weren't going to live up to his standards.

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Offline Hatter23

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Re: Churches in Mechelen, Belgium ... 5 down, 18 to go.
« Reply #8 on: February 25, 2013, 10:29:15 AM »
Some people's ugly is some pleople's beautiful. Personally, I am big fan of Googie architecture, and, paradoxically, one of the most common examples still surviving is churches.

And bowling alleys.

Yes, unfortunately some great examples have been lost recently to the wrecking ball.  Funny enough though on Live Journal I had been a part of the 'Antitheist' and 'Googie Love' groups for nearly a year until I noticed they both have the same founder/administrator.

An Omnipowerful God needed to sacrifice himself to himself (but only for a long weekend) in order to avert his own wrath against his own creations who he made in a manner knowing that they weren't going to live up to his standards.

And you should feel guilty for this. Give me money.

Offline 12 Monkeys

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Re: Churches in Mechelen, Belgium ... 5 down, 18 to go.
« Reply #9 on: February 26, 2013, 01:32:37 PM »
Some people's ugly is some pleople's beautiful. Personally, I am big fan of Googie architecture, and, paradoxically, one of the most common examples still surviving is churches.
Almost every reservation where I live has a church on it,it drives me nuts,but the remaining converted(to Christianity) Elders are against tearing these eyesores down.
 
 Most are just small wooden one room buildings,so it is not like tearing down a brick castle.
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