Something in the water?
August 8, 2005
Dear Editor:There’s obviously something toxic in the holy water at the Snowmass Chapel. Over the past few months, applicants at the Chapel have pushed for town approval to construct an enormous 80-foot-tall cathedral in the center of a populous residential area of Snowmass Village.The sole purpose of this gigantic building would be to house a Fisk organ, the pride of what the Chapel calls “a gift from God.” It was a donation from a wealthy investor, in fact, and serves to do nothing for the community or residents of Snowmass. The organ’s tune is very foul, and now everyone’s ears are ringing.Snowmass does not need, and will never need, a building of this size for any purpose, other than to house the large load of dung that the Chapel is slinging to citizens these days. The fact that the Chapel has proposed this enormous design, solely to set up bragging rights over local choir groups, rings true of the old song, “We must have more, be bigger and be louder than the guy next door.” It was the opening hymn at the Chapel, but after denial from Town Council, the tune is now changing.The Religious Liberty Protection Act is the new tool that the Chapel hopes to use to gain approval for their structure. It is a federal bill that allows developers to override the decisions of community leaders for the purpose of constructing churches and religious buildings.The problem with the Chapel’s decision to utilize this act is their assumption that the building’s size is necessary to accommodate the needs of the people and the community. The truth of the situation is that the Chapel never intended on housing anything except bragging rights over an expensive organ, and the matter of religious sanctity is not in question in any aspect of the project. It’s a very bad public relations move for the Chapel.Chaplain Edgill Pile is pioneering the push for the Fisk organ, as he is an experienced organist. One might think that his experience would have taught him that the Fisk organ requires only a portion of the space that they propose to be acoustically sound in a building. The need for such a large building only hints at the Chapel’s greed and gluttony – the need to be bigger and more powerful – hardly the characteristics of a peace-loving institution that they represent themselves to be.The Chapel’s design was not intended to house the people, the community meeting space or the needs of the church at all. It was simply designed to create a monolithic structure in the center of a small town, something for Chapel management to brag about, like schoolchildren over rival choir groups. It has no place in Snowmass Village, and the residents at Seasons Four, Fairway Three and surrounding areas have already voiced their adamant disagreement to the project.Some day very soon, the Chapel is going to find out that there is no God hiding beneath their beautiful Fisk organ.Pat VigilSnowmass Village