Oakland's new Cathedral, part 2


Sometimes readers write in with insights that just stun an editor and author. Yesterday, I wrote about the promising design of the new Oakland Cathedral. But evidently, I didn't look at the plans with sufficient, ahhh, imagination. The reader, who wishes his name be withheld, writes:

As an Evangelical Protestant, I am used to churches that are more of the worship—warehouse variety, which do not train us to view church architecture as symbolism.  I've never attended, though I've visited for example, a Catholic church in the classic shape of the cross; and I'm familiar with the Vatican's rows of collonades which, in effect, embrace the visitor with outstretched arms.

I can't escape noticing, however, the rather... feminine shape of the new Oakland building.  Whether you view the large, organic cutout in the front, or the view from above, it seems almost as though the architects were making this statement on purpose.
Now, I know that sometimes a cigar is just a cigar, and sometimes a large, female—reproductive—organ—shaped church is sometimes just a church, but given the Catholic predisposition toward symbolism in architecture, do you think this was intentional?  Perhaps as a symbol of the church being the Bride of Christ?  Or as some type of reaction to all those phallic church steeples thrusting up everywhere?
Just wondering what your thoughts are about that.  Have the architects or the church made any statements about this?
As far as I know, there have been no official statements on the matter.
Thomas Lifson    5 23 05