Concordia Experience


The Chapel of Our Lord

The Chapel of Our Lord stands as a constant reminder to the Concordia-Chicago Community of God's Grace in our lives through His Son, Jesus Christ. It emphasizes the importance of worship as the very heart and center of all college activities. The Clara and Spencer Werner Auditorium is a symbol of the Christian use of the arts in the service of God and His people.

On May 18, 1980, the Chapel of Our Lord and the Clara and Spencer Werner Auditorium was dedicated to the glory of the Triune God. The furnishings of the chapel, including the stained glass windows, were financed by special gifts from individuals including students, faculty, staff and friends of the University.

The ecclesiastical appointments of the chapel emphasize the importance of the proclamation of the Word of God and the celebration of the Sacraments. Carved from Botticino marble, the altar, baptismal font, lectern and pulpit remind us of the solid foundation upon which our faith is based, namely, "the foundation of the apostles and prophets with Jesus Christ Himself being the cornerstone" (Ephesians 2:20).

The design of the building permits its use either for worship purposes or for a variety of musical and dramatic productions. The front half of the nave features moveable pews that can be rearranged to suit the occasion.

The north window of the chapel with its flow of colors, together with the massive cross, symbolizes the power and grace of the Trinity.

chapel organ

The Schoknecht organ was built by Wilhelm Zimmer & Sons and designed by Paul Bunjes. It was repaired and refurbished in 2004 to better meet the needs of near-constant use by University students and faculty. The organ has 52 ranks with 2,791 pipes.

Rising directly from the floor of the organ transept, the 22-foot wide instrument rises some 26 feet to the ceiling in a maximum depth of 6 feet. The organ has mechanical key action for the Great, Swell, Positif, and Pedal, and electric drive for the fanfare.

In 2004 the facade pipes were all replaced. A new combination system was installed providing 32 memory levels (enough for each of the University's organ students), and the tonal concept of the organ was adjusted to make the organ more versatile.

The bronze Christ Sculpture on the building's exterior shows the resurrected Christ. The lower portion displays the open tomb. The Christ figure is depicted with arms extended in victory and in blessing. Above and to the right of the figure is the sun representing the statement of Malachi 4:2: "The Sun of Righteousness shall rise with healing in His wings."

The north chancel window symbolizes the Holy Trinity. There are no predominant symbols other than the color of white representing the Father, the cross representing the Son and the color of red representing the Holy Spirit.

The east chancel window depicts the work of the Holy Spirit in the lives of the graduates. Represented are the graduates and various scenes symbolizing teaching, the family, the spread of the Gospel in the world and service to the needy. The descending dove, together with the flowing of red color throughout the window, represents the presence and guidance of the Holy Spirit in the lives of God's people.

The south sanctuary window represents "the sword of the Spirit which is the Word of God" (Ephesians 6:17). The five figures symbolize the five races of men—all redeemed by Christ.