Epworth United Methodist Church – Sanctuary Expansion

Epworth UMC commissioned Silling Associates to provide design services involving the reorganization of the sanctuary chancel area. The current split chancel choir seating arrangement and location of piano and organ instruments are modified to place the choir on‐center in alignment with the main axis of the worship space and face the congregation. Seating for the choir will accommodate 24 members for typical services with space for up to 40 members for special musical presentations. Other planning elements considered included: Arrangement of choir seats, risers, lines of sight, and acoustic performance; Location of altar table and central cross; Location of piano, organ, and organ speaker chambers;

Locations of pulpit and lectern; Location and configuration of communion rail and access to chancel from main worship space; Accommodation of contemporary praise band members and instruments; Accommodation of video projection equipment and screens to serve both congregational participants and occupants of the chancel area; General circulation between the first row of pews and the communion rail; Potential modification of the built “proscenium,” including side walls and ceiling bulkhead, separating the sanctuary seating from the chancel space. The architectural character of the existing sanctuary is honored, and modifications to the chancel area are in keeping with the design and detailing of the historic structure.


Epworth United Methodist Church


Ripley, WV


18,300 gsf


Additions, Renovations