Catholic churches are among the great architectural treasures of England and Wales yet hardly known and rarely explored. This beautifully illustrated guide opens up a hidden heritage with its survey of 50 of the finest Catholic churches. Each entry includes other fascinating buildings in the area that are worth a detour. There are Gothic Revival churches, neo-Classical, Byzantine, English Arts-and-Crafts and Modernist as well as a few built prior to the Reformation. Behind every one is a compelling story, peopled by courageous old Catholic families; visionary priests and religious orders; captains of industry and commerce; and poor Irish migrants who contributed their pennies, and often their labour, to raise buildings that give glory to God. 'Throughout the ages, Catholic people have dedicated their faith, time, energy, and money, to building these sacred spaces, and with love and care adorned them with commensurate beauty. The transcendent architecture of churches is a witness to human destiny beyond this immanent world. Cardinal Hume once said Churches are not just places in which we worship God but with which we worship God . As Chair of the Church s Patrimony Committee I warmly welcome the publication of Elena Curti s Fifty Catholic Churches to See Before You Die.' + George Stack - Archbishop of Cardiff
Elena Curti has always loved visiting churches and, in recent years, has specialised in writing about Catholic heritage and conservation. Born in Italy, she was educated in England and trained as a journalist. She has been a newspaper and radio reporter and a television producer. In 2000 she joined the international Catholic weekly, The Tablet, serving as Deputy Editor from 2004 to 2016. She is now a freelance journalist based in London.