COLLEGE STATION - All Faiths Chapel at Texas A&M University has reopened after extensive renovations — but even more updates are coming.
The renovations to date were focused to the interior of the facility and included new flooring, seating, furniture and painting, says Neil Peltier, an assistant director of the University Center & Special Events Department who oversees daily operations for the chapel. He invites Aggies and others to come take a look and consider using the facility for appropriate upcoming events, including weddings.
“We had very modest plans for our initial renovations. Thanks to the very generous support of The Association of Former Students, private donors and increased funding from the Division of Student Affairs, we were able to accomplish much more than we originally intended,” he adds.
Peltier says the additional work is planned for later this year, including updates to the restrooms, indoor and outdoor lighting and some exterior improvements.
“We will select a time that minimizes impact on our student body so that they all have the opportunity to enjoy the changes we have made to the facility.” He notes that a rededication ceremony is tentatively planned for the spring semester once all updates to the chapel have been completed.
For almost 60 years, All Faiths Chapel has represented the spiritual hub of Texas A&M. The chapel is available for belief-based recognized student organization activities and meetings, including religious services. It is available to Texas A&M students, former students and employees of all denominations and creeds. Its purpose is to encourage the spiritual expression and belief-based development of the university community.
The original intent of the building was to create a space where persons of all denominations and beliefs could come for reflection, worship and spiritual growth. Peltier says that remains the intent for the chapel. “The refurbishment of this building reinforces the Division of Student Affairs and the University Center’s commitment to providing exceptional services, facilities, and experiences that enrich student learning and development.”
The chapel, one of the relatively few such facilities in the nation on the campus of a public university, is used on an almost daily basis and it also has been the site of thousands of Aggie weddings and numerous memorial services.
It is the work of Richard Vrooman, a 1952 Texas A&M graduate who created the winning design in a competition sponsored by The Association of Former Students — a competition conducted exclusively among Aggies holding architecture degrees.
With its beautiful stained glass entry and simple but rustic interior architecture, the chapel is described as “beautiful and inspiring in its simplicity.”
As its name suggests, All Faiths Chapel welcomes people of all religions to express their spirituality and develop their beliefs. “We celebrate the diversity of faiths of our campus community,” Peltier says pointing out a plaque in the chapel entry with a quote from the book of Isaiah that reads, “My house shall be called a house of prayer for all peoples.”