Saint Paul’s, the Antwerp Dominican church, a revelation
A church for sermon, confession and music
A church for sermon, The sacrament of reconciliation. The believer [or penitent] confesses his / her shortcomings to a priest [the confessor] and expresses his / her regret. On behalf of God the priest grants forgiveness [absolution] and imposes a form of penance. This may include several prayers, an order to reconcile with the other party or, in the past, sometimes a pilgrimage. and music, or in other words for truth, good and beauty. In every Catholic church people do not only want to stand grateful or beseeching before God. People want to be intellectually trained by sermons, edifying and inspiring speeches. During confession people want to help the believer to fight evil by helping him or her to contemplate good and evil and especially by making good victorious through the reconciliation with God. And in liturgical services harmonious beauty wants to be resounded by both thundering and tender organ sounds. This treble aim ‘to hear the truth, to make good victorious and to make beauty resound’, corresponds with the definition the great Dominican scholar Thomas Aquinas made of God in his Summa Theologica: “God is truth, good and beauty” (Deus est verum, bonum et pulchrum’).