St Mary’s Church, Crosthwaite, Cross Small

St Mary’s Church at Crosthwaite, near Windermere, is another standard nineteenth-century construction at which Kevin Price and I called in the autumn. I was struck by the gaudy decoration of the sanctuary, that part of the chancel close to the altar. Various saints and angels gazed up and out from shimmering, gold backgrounds. The whole was railed off and it is probably considered to be the church’s finest feature.

Upon that altar with its sparking backdrop was a small wooden cross, which a casual observer might even overlook. This is the difficulty with much theology and ecclesiology (church practices); their grand arguments and impressive traditions may reduce the Cross and Christ’s work to a mere footnote, a side issue or a peripheral. They can distract us from the fundamentals. If you are more interested in spiritual gifts, eschatology, church history or church growth rather more than Christ’s atoning work- go home and start again.

For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified. 1 Corinthians 2:2, NKJV