Posts Tagged ‘Jesuit Father Jerry Cobb’

Seattle University’s Chapel Receives Prestigious Architecture Award

Seattle University’s highly acclaimed chapel, has garnered the American Institute of Architects’ 2012 Gold Medal for architect Steven Holl. The medal is one of the most prestigious awards given to architects, with its previous recipients including Frank Gehry, Santiago Calatrava, Ieoh Ming Pei and Frank Lloyd Wright.

Built in 1997, the Chapel of St. Ignatius was immediately welcomed as Seattle University’s spiritual heart and has come to be a popular destination for visitors interested in joining the campus community in worship or simply marveling at its beauty.

Jesuit Father Jerry Cobb, currently provincial assistant for formation and the provincial assistant for higher education for the Oregon Province, chaired the planning committee that hired Holl and supervised the design and construction of the chapel. As the chapel celebrated its 10-year anniversary in 2007, Father Cobb shared his thoughts with Broadway & Madison, the printed faculty and staff newsletter that preceded the University’s current publication, The Commons. Excerpts from the interview follow.

Broadway & Madison:  What’s something the average faculty or staff member might not know about the chapel?

Father Cobb:  Non-Catholics might be consoled to know that in 1995 we asked Steven Holl to design a chapel that would be “engaging for people of all faiths or no faith or faith-under-crisis.” The poet Rilke once advised that when people disappoint you, you should turn to nature because nature will not disappoint you, and I feel something similar about the Catholic Church. When it disappoints you, which is likely to be every day, you can turn to places such as the chapel where God’s saving presence seems tangible and life-giving.

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