Posted in projects
on March 19, 2015 10:03 am EDT
Case Study: The Merging of Two Mississippi Churches
Post Hurricane Katrina, two Southern parishes join forces in a new build designed by a local architectural firm.
Holy Family Catholic Church, Pass Christian, Miss. Images courtesy of JH&H Architects Planners Interiors PA.
Dedicated in January 2014, the new Holy Family Catholic Church in Pass Christian, Miss., is a response to a parish’s need for a new worship space to accommodate its growing congregation and community. After Hurricane Katrina devastated the Gulf Coast and severely damaged nearby St. Paul Catholic Church and School, a decision to merge two existing parishes created the new Holy Family Parish. The existing Our Lady of Lourdes Parish and the St. Paul Catholic Parish were merged together causing an increase in the number of parishioners at the existing Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church Campus. The objective of the new church is to provide a traditional worship space with updated technology and a new outdoor gathering space that connects the new church with the existing church buildings on the site, as well as the nearby school.
The church’s humble exterior, which consists of lap siding, board and batten siding, and brick, allows it to maintain a simple coastal image while showing respect for the aesthetic of its surroundings.
The Holy Family Parish site is located in a residential district along Menge Avenue. The new worship center is sited away from the road so that it does not overpower the neighboring homes. It also works with the arrangement of existing buildings to create an inviting courtyard and a sense of place for the parish. The church’s humble exterior, which consists of lap siding, board and batten siding, and brick, allows it to maintain a simple coastal image while showing respect for the aesthetic of its surroundings.
The blending of the bold interior with the modest exterior provides a sacred place of worship for the parish and complements the character of the local community.
The design of the 10,230-square-foot church is a traditional nave with small side transepts seating 380 in traditional pews. The church has a rich, traditional interior with bold colors and elegant stained glass to reflect the worship style of the parish. The main nave is entered through a gathering space where the baptistry is located. The baptistry, altar and tabernacle are all located on a main focal axis, symbolically connecting all three.