In the heart of Lenoir-Rhyne University's Lutheran Theological Southern Seminary (LTSS) lies Christ Chapel, a structure which has brought students together for worship for the past 50 years. The church, dedicated on May 14, 1967, was designed by Harold E. Wagoner of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Christ Chapel's design is intended to combine traditional and contemporary architecture, symbolizing worship's relationship to both past and present. The great center rise, with its pointed arches and upward thrust, are reflective of Gothic architecture, which flourished in Europe during the high and late medieval period. However, the wide nave, which brings worshippers to a close relationship with the altar-table, reflects the contemporary emphasis of gathered fellowship of God's family about his table.
LTSS is one of seven seminaries supported by the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA). It is located in and supported by six regional synods, incorporating ELCA congregations in South Carolina, North Carolina, Virginia, Georgia, Tennessee, Alabama, Mississippi, Florida, the Bahamas, and the Caribbean. These supporting synods are reflected through materials used in the construction. The floor is Tennessee crab-orchard stone, the marble is from Alabama, and the granite from Georgia. The altar's metal work and baptismal rails, as well as the altar-table sticks, are made of hand-hammered Swedish steel, reflecting a kinship with world Lutheranism.
The chapel's great facade window consists of five panels, presenting the theme of the decent of the Holy Spirit. The window consists of large, clear, plate glass panels to which stained glass is laminated by means of crystal clear apoxy resin. When the window was installed, it was the only window in America utilizing this newest and most exciting development of stained glass fabrication. While the window was designed by the Willet Stained Glass Studios in Philadelphia, PA, much of the actual work on it was done in Belgium, where this unique process was perfected.
A special prayer of thanksgiving will be held during a Memorial Service on Alumni Day, May 19 at 10 a.m.