Church Building Symbolism
It has been the desire of the trustees that the new building should in itself bear witness to God and a number of symbolic features have been introduced to assist in this.
The Sanctuary Cross; probably life-size and of weathered texture, is tapered. as would have been the Cross of Calvary, wrought as it was from a tapered tree. It stands free, rising naturally out of the structure of the Church and is no “tacked-on” accessory.
The Reredos Panel: constructed from hand made, red sand stock bricks reclaimed from a century-old hotel at St. Mary’s, is symbolic of fallen mankind, reclaimed by God and given new grace and dignity through the Cross of Christ.
The Communion Table: is copied from the Leonardo da Vinci Masterpiece. “The Last Supper”. Communicants will kneel at the table itself to partake of the elements, symbolic of the sharing of grace enjoyed by sinners and saints at the last supper and as a reminder that John Wesley viewed communion as a ”saving sacrament” and for Methodists the invitation is to an open table. The rough texture is achieved by a sand blasting process and the rugged appearance reminds us that Jesus presided at an ordinary table in an ordinary home and transformed an ordinary meal into a perpetual feast.
The Pulpit: design highlights a lectern, reminding us that its function is not to parade a preacher. but to break open God’s Word, the bread of life.
The Baptismal Font: is located on the congregational floor level as a sign that the first approach a person makes to the Church of Christ is through the water of baptism.
The Western Window: is symbolic of heaven and earth united through Jesus Christ. The ; or Chi Ro symbol was the ancient sign used by illiterate people to write the word Christ and are the first two Greek letters of the word Christ. This symbol is of brass, reminding us of the non-corroding fact of the Gospel which is Christ. The Orb of earth contains the colours of the world, both land and sea, while the orb of heaven is basically of gold. Yet a closer look will reveal that some of the colours of earth are found in the orb of heaven and vice-versa, for the Son of God was also the Son of Man and ultimately the temporary distinctions will pass away and Christ will rule in every heart,
The External Grille: incorporates a concrete cross which is in fact a structural member. The grille fulfills the practical function of shading the Church from the low hot Western sun. God has built the Cross into the structure of the world, strengthening the frail and supporting the weak. Its shadow saves man and his church from being consumed by the heat of his own vicious ambition.
The Porch Window: incorporates sepia coloured, sand-blasted figures based on the theme “symbols of God and Man”. The tractor and factory represents man’s industries and the aircraft, man’s technological achievements. The fish was the secret sign of the early Christians, while the loaf, the wheat. the grapes and the chalice are symbolic of the sacraments and the dove is symbolic of the Holy Spirit.
Photos by Rob H.