HERE ARE PHOTOS of Saint Nicholas Church, in the village of Pocahontas, Illinois. The church is located about 42 highway miles east-by-northeast of downtown Saint Louis in Bond County, and is a part of the Diocese of Springfield in Illinois.
Statue of Saint Nicholas of Myra (270–6 December 343), in the narthex. The Saint is identified iconographically by his episcopal vestments, and he is holding three balls or bags on a book; this symbolizes the three bags of gold that Nicholas used to prevent three girls from being sold into prostitution.
This church has approximately 183 parishioners in 91 families. I arrived at this church during the Agnus Dei, and it looked nearly filled. [I belatedly realize that my photos are mainly architectural, and that I ought to include photos of the faithful.]
Before the altar is a crown of thorns.
The windows in this church are simple, but each incorporates a symbol. Here is a seashell, both a symbol of baptism, and an instrument used during the sacrament.
On the left is a butterfly, which is a symbol of the soul and of the resurrection. On the right is the phoenix, which is also a symbol of resurrection, and most specifically a symbol of Christ's resurrection.
Until recently, there seemed to be little hope in reviving the Church's rich treasury of symbolism. However, popular youth culture has lately revived this symbolism for us. See the article Can Man Read the Symbolic Book of Nature Today?
XIIIth Station of the Cross, Jesus is taken from the Cross.
The cornerstone of the church.
401 East State Street
Pocahontas, Illinois 62275