Altar and Baldacchino
In the symbolism of the church architecture the sanctuary area represents heaven as seen by St. John and recorded in the Book of Revelation. It is also the Holy Place as in the temple in Jerusalem. The symbolism of the furniture and architecture in this part of the church is rich and profound.
The table on which the Sacrifice of the Mass is offered.
The altar was designed by Matthew Alderman and constructed by the Rattigan Schottler company.
The altar is a gift of the Byrne Family.
The Lamb of God Mosaic
The altar in the center of the heavenly city represents the throne of God. The mosaic portrays the Lamb of God–the “Lamb who was slain” enthroned in the center of heaven. The lamb’s blood is being shed into the chalice and he holds the flag representing the victory of his resurrection. He is seated on the book of life with seven seals as portrayed in the Book of Revelation. The mosaic is a gift of the Reed Family.
Beneath the altar is the main reliquary containing first class relics of a first century martyr, Saint Therese of Lisieux, Saint Mother Teresa of Kolkata, Saint John Neumann, and Saint Benedict.
The reliquary was donated by the Koschnitzki Family.
The main crucifix is a nineteenth-century hand-painted in the style of Duccio, the thirteenth-century Italian master from Siena. The monastic church of San Antimo, which inspired Our Lady of the Rosary church, is about a thirty-minute drive from Siena and was built around the same time that Duccio would have been active.
This piece was discovered online and was purchased from an antique store in Utah.
The crucifix is a gift of the Cunningham Family.
The retro altar was designed by Matthew Alderman and donated by the Higgins Family. The altar ware and tabernacle are all salvaged from old churches, restored and renewed for worship in the new Our Lady of the Rosary Church.
The missal stand was donated by the Walker Family.
The holy water bucket and sacristy bell donated by the Lucas Family.
The Virgin Mary
On either side of the crucified Lord are his mother Mary. The gospels record that she was there at his side to the end.
The Apostle John
The only disciple who went with Jesus to the cross was the “beloved disciple” John. It was from the cross that Jesus said to John, “Behold your mother” thus commending his mother to his care.
The Baldacchino brings focus to the altar and is like a temple within a temple. It adds a level of symbolism and beauty to the whole.
In the early liturgies of the church the altar was covered by a tent like structure or canopy. This was a reminder of the tabernacle in the wilderness which was a tent. Eventually this evolved into a more permanent structure of wood, then of marble and stone.
The baldacchino looks like a tower or house to remind us that heaven is a city. It is surmounted by a turret and cross to tell us that the city is the City of God.
The Baldacchino is a gift of the Mayer Family.
The dome above the altar portrays the night sky over the Bay of Lepanto on October 7, 1571. In the Battle of Lepanto the Christian forces defeated the navy of the Turkish Muslim Ottoman Empire. This was commemorated by the Feast of Our Lady of Victories which later became the Feast of Our Lady of the Rosary. Surrounding the starry dome are four archangels who surround the throne of God. The inscriptions in English remind us that the angels in heaven sing “Holy, Holy, Holy” in the presence of the Lamb who was slain to take away the sins of the world.
The artwork in the ceiling of the baldacchino was given by the Reed Family and executed by Anja Zunkeler to designs by Matthew Alderman.
The Book of Ezekiel and the Book of Revelation speak of the angels in heaven–the cherubim–who have the face of a man, but are surrounded by six wings. The cherubim surrounding the throne were painted by Anja Zunkeler.
Behold the Lamb of God
The entire church is a proclamation of the saving work of Jesus Christ, the Lamb of God. So on the front of the baldacchino we declare, Behold the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world.
Inside the baldacchino is the hymn of the angels before the throne of God, “Holy Holy, Holy, Lord God of Hosts. Heaven and Earth are full of your glory”.
Below the starry dome are the words from a hymn which invokes the Holy Spirit.
In the symbolism of the church, the sanctuary represents heaven. The Book of Revelation tells us what heaven is like. It is a great city surrounded by a glassy sea. The swirling blue grey in the tiles suggests the glassy sea. The architectural features of the canopy (the baldacchino) suggest a city.
Altar cloths by the Howards, and chalices and ciboria by the Hendersons, Mazurs, Kuffel, and Bellavance Families.
Processional torches given by the Hess Family, and servers’ stools by the Rumchak Family.
The sanctuary lamp burns constantly as a sign of the Lord Jesus’ presence in the tabernacle. This unique antique lamp was salvaged from an old church and restored for the new OLR.
The Sanctuary lamp was given by the Ballard Family.
The pulpit was given by a generous gift from Carolyn J. and Randal A. Watson, for the glory of God, in honor of Blessed John Henry Newman (1801-1890), the great English priest, theologian, and preacher, in gratitude for his luminous intellect and matchless eloquence of expression, and with the prayer that those preaching from the pulpit may be inspired by his motto: “Cor ad cor loquitur,” (“Heart speaks to heart'”).
Candlesticks were given by the Riggins and Montagne Families.
The sanctus bell was made possible through a gift from the Kennedy Family.
The credence table is the resting place for the gifts on the altar and the vessels to be used in celebrating Mass
The credence table a gift from the Cancellero Family. Vestments were given by the Kennedy Family.
Every person involved in the liturgy plays a symbolic part in the worship. The altar servers represent the service all of us perform by worshipping God at Mass, but they also remind us of the angels of God who bow down before the throne and serve at the court of God himself in heaven. Finally they are a reminder to us of the service we give in God’s world in seeking to serve others who are in need.