A new spiritual care center is now open on the third floor of our Akron hospital, at the site of the former Locust Lobby. It replaces the chapel located near the third floor Atrium Lobby.
“Our chapel needed to move as part of the ongoing third floor renovations,” said Matthew Tweddle, MDiv, BCC, director of Chaplaincy Services. “However, this move created an opportunity for us to embrace intentional design and redefine the space to be more diverse and inclusive in how we provide spiritual healing.”
While the former chapel is one large open space, the new spiritual care center is divided into separate areas to better meet the needs of patient families and staff. It also provides a peaceful, calm and quiet setting for prayer, quiet reflection and respite.
Features of the space include:
- Sanctuary with flexible seating to accommodate small services
- Two private prayer rooms
- Children’s area
- Study/living area with a multi-faith library
- Place for supplies such as prayer rugs and crosses
- Office space for Chaplaincy Services and a conference room with a smart screen for Teams meetings
Design elements are grounded in nature, such as natural, light-colored wood. The stained glass in the sanctuary was made using a technique called slumping to create interesting textures and shapes. The space is bathed in ample natural light thanks to several opaque windows that let in the light, but enhance privacy. Matthew is also excited that the space has greater visibility due to its prominent location near critical care areas.
“We wanted to create a nice, vibrant space where all can feel welcome and more connected spiritually,” he said. “We’ve been very thoughtful in the design to make the space more flexible and inclusive to enhance the emotional and spiritual support we provide to patients, families and staff.”