Sanctuary Refresh

June 2024

Repurposing the Former Baptismal Font and Christ Candleholder
Previously, the Worship and Music Committee has proposed that the congregation decide how to repurpose the materials from the former baptismal font and Christ candleholder in a way that honors the legacy of those pieces’ service in the Saint Andrew’s Sanctuary. In a few weeks, you will have the opportunity to share your ideas to do just that.

The Worship and Music Committee will ask that the pieces be put on display, probably in Fellowship Hall, sometime this summer for the process of remembrance and re-imagining how the materials could and should be repurposed. We will provide note paper for you to share your ideas and all will be thoughtfully considered. More information will be forthcoming in the next few weeks.
For more information, contact Worship and Music Committee Chair Sharon Gurtel.

December 2023

Worship and Music (formerly Worship and Liturgical Arts) is aware that there is a variety of comments, questions, and concerns about the recently dedicated furnishings that are intended to help accomplish the vision stated below (see “Background”). We are in the process of organizing a listening session so that they can be addressed We also have included here answers to the questions we’ve received so far.

  • Where are the baptismal font and candle stand that we’ve been using? These two items are in storage at the church until the congregation has decided how they’d like them to be repurposed. There will be a process for this to happen. The lectern has been returned to the classroom lectern inventory and is being used for its original purpose.
  • Where is the baptismal bowl that Ed Short’s family gifted to Saint Andrew’s? The Short family bowl is also in storage and has not been used for some time as a baptismal bowl as it has black mold in the glaze. The congregation will also have input as to how they would like this to be repurposed.


Comments received so far include:

  • Great pieces, new furnishings look great, absolutely beautiful.
  • Excited to see the new look.
  • Love how the new pieces catch the light.

We recognize that the Sanctuary is a deeply personal space for all who worship with us. The love and work poured into it by previous congregation members have allowed us to develop strong roots as a faith community from which we can continue to grow.

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November 2023

The new lectern, baptismal font, and Christ candle holder that you’ve been hearing about and seen photos of have been completed by the artist, Warren Weber, and are in place in the Sanctuary. They were dedicated in worship on November 12, 2023.

The wood in these pieces is ash and is from trees blown over in a windstorm in the Bothell area and salvaged by the artist.  The metal accents on all three pieces are aluminum.  The lectern, font and candle holder are significantly lighter in color than what we’ve had in the Sanctuary before. That is on purpose.  Worship and Liturgical Arts’ (WLA) plan and vision in using the dedicated funds to refresh the Sanctuary is to transform the space from a darker, heavier feel to a lighter, ethereal aura – enhancing the beautiful outdoor views available through our windows.

Additionally, WLA has purposely elected to have furnishings reflect the story of our faith as much as possible.  The new lectern base reflects the alpha and omega presence of God.  The baptismal base and bowl reflect moving waters. In order to show the alpha and omega of the lectern, paraments will not be used on that furnishing.  WLA will be working with the Altar Guild on how to best display seasonal colors in the Sanctuary.

In order to make the Sanctuary furnishings more connected together esthetically the next phase of the refresh will be to restore the altar rail to its natural oak, by removing the dark stain and varnish.

As time-honored furnishings are replaced, WLA would like to hear your ideas as to what might be done to repurpose them.  Contact WLA chair Sharon Gurtel or Pastor Lara. The temporary lectern we’ve used during the past 5 years will again be used as a classroom lectern.,

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The Sanctuary refresh opportunity began in 2018 when Worship and Liturgical Arts (WLA) received donor-directed funds to imagine how our Sanctuary could look more contemporary with a few updates implemented. Together with Pastor Red Burchfield, our transition pastor, and Judy Gowdy, our resident degreed interior designer, WLA identified a list of potential things that could be done toward that end. In addition, we studied the ELCA’s paper “The Place Where We Worship” to learn about the national church’s description of the continuous evolution of worship spaces and then wrote a vision for the Saint Andrew’s Sanctuary that was approved by the Council in 2019.

The vision was and is to create a light, ethereal ambiance in the Sanctuary. WLA consulted with artists of different mediums (e.g. metal work, wood work, glass work, etc.) for their ideas on how our vision could be achieved. Their ideas stemming from their visit to our Sanctuary included mixing in various mediums beyond just wood, using more organic shapes, and using lighter shades of wood for furnishings while leaving the darker ceiling, pillars, and flooring.

The overall scope of the project, which will be done in stages, is to update the look and feel of the Sanctuary with more of a nod toward an extension of the view from our beautiful windows using different mediums and lighter colored wood tones in a few new furnishings to replace worn or temporary ones. WLA worked with Judy Gowdy to develop these overall design principles. It is WLA’s vision to use Sanctuary furnishings to help tell the story of what we believe as Christians. All of these pieces are intended to work together and be of similar design, to tell that story.

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  • 2018/2019: Worship and Liturgical Arts (WLA) received designated funds to use to update furnishings in the Sanctuary. Overview of proposed project presented to 2018-2019 Council received full support to proceed.
  • 2019: work begun to identify the greatest needs and a prioritization process.
  • Vision for the refresh project described how some new furnishings would bring a more contemporary look and feel to the Sanctuary, extend the outdoor elements we see through our sanctuary windows to the interior, lighten the overall color palette.
  • Met with several local artists, identified by interior designer Judy Gowdy, to hear their recommendations to achieve our vision.
  • 2020: project put on hold due to the pandemic shutdown.
  • 2023: project re-started post-pandemic, building on the work already done earlier.
  • Reviewed the artist’s recommendations from 2019.
  • Searched for a local artist with whom we could work to design and build the prioritized furnishings and stay within the dollars we had in the designated funds
  • Warren Weber from Bothell chosen, based on experience with building church furnishings, his artistry, and his love for this type of work.
  • Warren spent several hours in our Sanctuary, getting a view from all sections and the space as a whole.
  • November 2023: The new lectern, baptismal font, and Christ candle holder were completed by the artist, Warren Weber, and are in place in the Sanctuary. They were dedicated in worship on November 12, 2023.

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  • Replaces the temporary classroom lectern we’ve had in place for nearly 5 years.
  • Is more appropriately sized for the Sanctuary space.
  • An alpha and omega is the vertical construct.
  • Materials are natural ash wood with some minimal metal accents.

Baptismal Font and Christ Candle Holder:

  • Designed with curved wood structure representing rushing waters. The new Christ candle holder matches the design of the font.
  • The new pieces are similar in size to the furnishings they replaced.
  • Materials are natural ash wood with minimal metal accents.

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