Saturday, April 30, 2011

John Paul II

Tomorrow Pope Benedict is set to beatify his predecessor in the pontificate, John Paul II. Beatification is official recognition by the Catholic Church that an individual is in Heaven and can intercede with God. This is the last step before declaring someone a saint. John Paul II was known for his travels, visiting 129 countries while he was Pope, and he often rode in the Popemobile (here by Esbenkolind) so he could greet the crowds. After the attempt on his life in 1981, the vehicle was fitted with bulletproof glass.

Next year in Jerusalem

JStrouse made a version of Jerusalem from about 1000 BC, including the city walls, David's Palace, and of course the Temple on Mount Zion.

Thursday, April 28, 2011


During the middle ages, there was a constant back and forth between the church in Rome and local political authorities over who would control the power. At one point, Pope Gregory VII declared that as God was the sole source of authority, the Pope could choose to remove any sitting emperor. For his part, Holy Roman Emperor Henry IV of Germany felt that he could appoint church officials, and threatened to remove his support for Gregory as Pope. Gregory excommunicated Henry, and in 1077 (here by Jojo), Henry traveled to Canossa, where he did penance and received forgiveness from the Pope. A few years later, though, Henry invaded Rome and forced Gregory to flee.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Saint Basil's

Schneider Cheung built a great LEGO rendition of Cathedral of the Protection of Most Holy Theotokos on the Moat, more commonly known as Saint Basil's Cathedral. This cathedral was originally built in the mid-16th century on the order of Ivan IV (aka Ivan the Terrible), to commemorate a military victory. The design features a central sanctuary (commemorating the intercession of Mary) surrounded by eight additional sanctuaries (each commemorating a Biblical event or a particular saint), each with it's own onion-dome-topped tower. A tenth sanctuary was added later to house the tomb of local Saint Vasily (Basil).

Monday, April 25, 2011

Empty tomb

Building on the word of God - that's what kids at First United Methodist of Pittsburg, Kansas are doing. Sunday school teacher Dorcia Johnson has her kids building LEGO models as a way to connect with events from the life of Jesus, including this large-scale empty tomb, on display at the church during Holy Week events.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Good Friday

When they came to the place called the Skull, there they crucified him, along with the criminals-- one on his right, the other on his left. 34 Jesus said, "Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing." -Luke 23:33-34
Easter in LEGO by Steve Adamson.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Church of Saint Hedwig

The Church of Saint Hedwig in Opava, Czech Republic (here depicted in LEGO form by Hana129) has a history as interesting as it looks. Construction was begun on this cubist design in 1933, but in 1938 German troops moved in. They used the church itself as a weapons storehouse and the tower as a lookout. Under Communist rule it continued to be used as a storehouse for medical equipment. It was only after the collapse of Soviet control that it could return to its original use. The church was consecrated in 1993 and the final details (e.g. the cross on the tower) were completed in 1999. I see this as a sign or renewal that this site ultimately was redeemed after the two oppressive regimes that interrupted its intended use.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Journey to the West

I've previously noted MOCs based on Journey to the West, a Chinese novel about the journeys of a Buddhist monk that also act as an allegory of the spiritual life. James37918130 has his own version of the characters: the Monkey King, the monk Yuanzang, the half-man half-pig Zhu Bajie and the sand demon Sha Wujing.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011


Just after posting the Salt Lake Temple, the spiritual heart of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, I also found another building from Temple Square in Salt Lake City by another builder, StevePoulsen. The Church Office Building is the administrative heart of the Mormon organization, helping coordinate their ministries all around the world.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Praying Hands

Albrecht Dürer was a German painter and mathematician who is often considered the greatest artist of the Northern Renaissance. In the early 16th century he was commissioned to create an altarpiece based on the Assumption of Mary. Unfortunately the altarpiece was destroyed in a fire, but a copy survives, as do many of his preliminary sketches. One of these, the Praying Hands (here turned into a LEGO sculpture by Raphael Heusser) has been repeatedly reproduced and gained popularity. I'm guessing from looking at the copy of the altarpiece that these hands were to become those of the martyred figure in the left-hand panel.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Salt Lake Temple

Central Salt Lake City is dominated by the Salt Lake Temple (here built by Xarquar), which is the largest Temple of the LDS and also home to the President and the Quorum of the Twelve, the leaders of the church.

Friday, April 1, 2011

The Playmo Testament

Markus Bomhard, a German priest began a project to illustrate biblical scenes with Playmo figures. His endeavor even earned favorable mention from the Pope. However, the fine lawyers at Playmo brought suit, and so the Klicky Bibel has been taken down. It may be back again someday in a different form.

I hesitate to bring it up, in fear of additional lawsuits, but it appears that another similar project is also available, the Playmobible.