St Paul's, College Square, Harlow Town Centre

St Paul's at Easter 2011, looking west. The photograph shows the temporary installation by Robert Enoch on the pillars. This Matisse style images incorporate symbols of Christian faith. Robert Enoch writes:
'The basic idea of this work came from John 3:16 "For God so loved the world..."  I wanted to make hands that wrapped around the pillars of the church, i.e. the people and the foundation of the church in a gesture of blessing.  I was also thinking of Psalm 139, "When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, Your eyes saw my unformed substance..."  I liked the idea of nascient forms, like microbes, as well as more diaphanous forms like the waves in water and the moisture of clouds.'

Notable internal features include the original brightly coloured furnishings designed by R.W. Hurst, the decorative colour scheme and the imposing John Piper mosaic that rises eighteen feet above the altar on the east wall. This was Piper's first mosaic (unveiled we understand a matter of days before that in BBC television centre) and the subject, the risen Christ in the home of Emmaus (Luke 24 v 31), was chosen to convey the sense of Christ being always present in His house and at worship - drawing people together in fellowship with Himself.

Click here for a reflection by Jonathan Evens of Commission4Mission.

The mosaic, inspired by Romanesque carvings, was realised by Dennis M Williams Ltd. A study for the mosaic, an oil on canvas is in a private collection. On the reverese John Piper pained a study of a Welsh non-conformist chapel. (This information from the Catalogue for the exhibition, John Piper and the Church at Dorchester Abbey, 2012).

A depiction of the Crucifixion by Polish artist Ruszkowski (born 1907) hangs above the choir and a statue of the Madonna and Child, with disputed origins, is displayed on the wall of the Baptistery. These form part of the foundation vision of Harlow with its extensive public art (sculpture) and Gibberd Gallery in the nearby Civic Centre.

Below: St Paul's, looking east, Easter 2011