The Power of Media
... I learned this from an ardent youth minister today, who is Very Big on youth workers comprehending the (freaky) level of influence that contemporary media forms impose upon modern liturgies and worship.
Case in point: before the Reformation, the standard seating arrangement in Church looked like this: (see immediately above- look Lord, no chairs!) Anyone who has ever wandered through an Orthodox or Catholic basilica in Europe, and wondered at the tendancy of the faithful to wander around hither and yon during Mass, or at the lack of permanent seating in the off times, will know what I mean. Simply put, there usually are no pews or permanent seating arrangements.
BUT then, post Reformation, we have this major change in the interiors of churches, such that they begin to look like this (see top left): Notice the shift from a vastly empty interior space in the shape of a cross to a structure that looks remarkably like a wide-open book. Why the difference? Because the Reformation introduced a staggering and novel emphasis on this... (see the open Bible, top right)
Pretty cool, huh?
(Fr. WB has pointed out that modern church architecture tends to resemble IPods, laptops, or projection boxes...)