Architecture and evangelization have often been intimately related, although in a way that we could describe as unorthodox.
Benedict XVI recently affirmed that the Catholic Church will only be progressive if it is missionary. In fact, in all periods, Christian architecture has evolved from the missionary impulse, responding to the expectations of the institution it serves and represents, and to its specific program: announcing the Gospel and baptizing people (cf. Mc 16 :fifteen). Father Capellades, director of the L’Art Sacrè magazine, remembered it more than 40 years ago, with these provocative words: “This is a war, and I do not care if the churches are beautiful or ugly, as long as they serve to evangelize el mundo »(Conversations of Religious Architecture, 1965).
During the 16th century, the massive evangelization of Mexico led Spanish missionaries to propose, more or less intentionally, new spaces of worship called chapels of Indians or open chapels. It was the circumstances – and not the theoretical reflection – that got the guy to implant himself and survive in time, to become, for many, the most original architectural contribution of American culture until the arrival of the skyscraper.