Shalom Lutheran Church

Alexandria, MN

In their first thirty years, Shalom Lutheran church served the community without a sanctuary. Church services were held in the fellowship hall, which had a nine-foot-high flat ceiling and poor acoustics. As the parish grew, the shortage of Sunday school rooms, office space, and restrooms as well as a fellowship hall that was serving double duty became a growing concern.

WSN redesigned the existing space to improve efficiency creating two new classrooms and new men's and women's restrooms without adding any additional square footage. In a new addition, WSN created a 300-seat sanctuary, sacristy, and audio control room.

The church community felt strongly about creating a warm and inviting space with rich acoustics for its music ministry. The wood ceiling, stone wall behind the altar, and bright colors foster warmth while the polished concrete floor in the main worship space contributes to a robust sound. The sanctuary is bathed in natural light through custom-designed windows behind the seating area as well as through the windows that form a cross behind the altar. At night, light streams through the custom windows to the parking lot, inviting parishioners and visitors to come in. The cross, which faces the roadway, is also illuminated by LED strip lights at night, enhancing the church's strong, visible presence in the community.