Chancel Steps Poured

Steps for Chancel, Communion Rail Completed

West Ambulatory Stairs also Completed

Those who toured the construction site during the Homecoming Picnic saw a very tall, single “step” between the chancel (altar, pulpit, lectern, etc.) and the main floor of the church nave.   This week the team responsible for concrete flatwork formed, poured and smoothed the actual steps that will allow one to step up to the chancel.

Several small but important changes were made in the chancel elevation and steps. 

  • First, the chancel was raised an additional step.  A small but notable change that will improve site lines and visibility, whether you are attempting to better engage with the pastors, get a better look at the bridal couple as they exchange their vows, or simply get a better view of your child/grandchild as they sing at the front of the church.
  • Second, the communion rail and kneeler cushions have been moved from the top level of the chancel to the front edge of the chancel.  This means everyone has full access to the communion table, without having to navigate any steps.  You can also see below that the communion table will be wider than before, affording the pastors and elders the opportunity to serve traditional communion tables, if desired, in larger worship services.

The steps were built from custom cut wooden forms.  The forms were temporarily nailed to the concrete floor.  Pieces of hard foam board were used in strategic locations under the concrete to reduce the total load.  Finally, concrete was delivered directly to the forms via a pumper truck (like the one used for the foundations) that extended it’s large boom right over the top of the new sanctuary walls!

Another, smaller set of stairs were also formed and poured in the west ambulatory (hallway) that connects the town square and the new sanctuary.  Remember, there is also an east ambulatory (so now there are two ways to enter the sanctuary from the town square) that has an ADA-compliant ramp.  No one has to navigate stairs to enter the building or the sanctuary!

Wooden forms are custom cut to size to create the new chancel steps.

Hard foam board is used along with concrete to reduce the load (weight).

The forms are temporarily nailed to the concrete floor while the steps are poured.

An extra step was added to the chancel height to improve visibility.

A pumper truck was used once again to place concrete directly into the forms.

The wider bottom step holds the communion rail and kneeler cushions.

This eliminates any barriers (steps) to receiving Holy Communion.

After the concrete cures for a time, the tradesmen smooth the final finish.

Side stairs in the west ambulatory (hallway) were also formed and poured.