The chancel and a table decorated with candles for a Lenten Taizé service - 2018

A Taizé worship service involves sung and chanted prayers, 

meditation, a period of silence, and readings.

First Presbyterian Church of Racine—The Sanctuary

The spiritual heart of the church is the sanctuary where the congregation gathers to reflect on and honor God.  The sanctuary is elegant in its simplicity.  It is virtually devoid of symbolic decoration or iconography, as is the case going back to the Reformation.  There is a feeling of calm among the rows of original 1852 white pews with their stained mahogany railings.  The stained glass windows were added in 1885. 

A large cross now hangs on the organ pipes in front of the sanctuary or chancel area. There are a dozen gold plaster rosettes on the ceiling, a gold stencil pattern just below the ceiling, and gold leaf above the four slender columns supporting the balcony. 

The 2008 renovation of this space included a complete redesign of the chancel platform to allow for much greater accessibility and adaptability of this front area.  The chancel can now accommodate a small concert orchestra, dramatic presentations, large choirs including bell choirs, and a variety of liturgical celebrations. 

The interior was completely relighted, painted, and decorated to properly display the mid-19th century Greek revival character of the room.  The new wooden floor for the chancel area was matched with the original oak floor in the sanctuary.

(The photos below show you what the chancel looked like prior to and after the renovations.)