The renovation as much of a church-in-the-round as possible in a square space. They built the raised altar floor (predella) so all can see; the steps were curved and corners were rounded. They also put two concentric granite circles around the foot of the altar, and made the lectern, bishop’s chair (cathedra), and presider’s chair round.
The altar is the first of six altar-pieces, all made of the same two stone combination of Kasota Stone and a high grade of sandstone. Kasota stone is from Minnesota, and looks like a golden marble. The altar is placed in the center of the faith community, like a family around the Divine Table. Other altar pieces are: the baptismal font, the two tables holding the sacramental oils and the Tabernacle, the Cathedra, and Lectern [ambo].
The altar repeats the shape of the altar floor, or predella. There is no saint-relic in the altar. The base of the altar is a round carving of wheat shocks tied together with grapevines, symbolizing the Eucharist. The two granite circles around the altar emphasize roundness.
Cathedra, Bishop’s Chair:
The cathedra is round, as described above. It also has the diocesan coat of arms carved into the back. It symbolizes the teaching and guidance authority of the bishop, who is to model the chief Good Shepherd, Christ.
The Presider’s Chair, is the wooden chair next to the cathedra. It is also round and is made of the same wood as the people’s pews, oak stained red. It is for the priest presider.
The re-design of the Sanctuary is basically two-fold: to make it a Modern Neo-Classical style, and to make it as much of a church-in-the-round as it can be in a square space, moved from rectangle to circle shape. The visual roundness of the altar floor, the altar-pieces, and the placement in the center of the congregation, all contribute to the sense of roundness.
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