The chapel was dedicated in 1959, three years after groundbreaking ceremonies. (View a copy of the dedication booklet from September 27, 1959.) Originally called Memorial Chapel in recognition of the many memorial gifts made to help fund its construction, it was named the Chapel of the Resurrection in 1969. Numerous special events highlighted the 50th anniversary of the Chapel in the 2009–10 academic year.
Clearly visible from nearby U.S. Route 30, the building is located on the highest point of ground on the Valparaiso University campus and has been a Northwest Indiana landmark for more than 50 years.
Architects for the building were Charles Stade and Associates of Park Ridge, Ill., although other designers were involved in special elements such as the stained glass windows and the baptistry. Construction costs totaled $7.5 million.
It has been said that inspiration for the design of the building was provided in part by the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem. This plan has the chancel as the most significant part of the structure with the nave attached to it rather than the two areas being viewed only as a single building.
The chancel of the Chapel of the Resurrection is 98 feet high and is circular in shape with a roof shaped like a nine-point star. The nave is 58 feet high and 193 feet long. There is seating for approximately 2,000 people, although capacity varies depending upon the configuration of the chairs.
The Chapel is home to the Fred and Ella Reddel Memorial Organ. Learn more about it here.
The Chapel of the Resurrection is a place of corporate worship for the University community, but since the Athletics-Recreation Center is the only facility on campus with greater seating capacity, the chapel serves a variety of roles. It regularly is the site of University convocations, commencement ceremonies, and special lectures as well as performances by instrumental and vocal ensembles.
Learn more about the university’s history.