Father Sean Connor was looking for an alter set to complete an intensive restoration for the lower church at St. Ann's in Dorchester, MA. I let him know that if I had ample time then I would design and build him something very beautiful.
At the time, catastrophic events overwhelmed the parish and community as a result of the Boston Marathon bombing. Young parishioner Martin Richards was killed and the family was severely injured. I decided to use the same design that I had recently built for St. Joseph's Retreat House in Milton. The project was to become an in-kind donation from my family.
I was able to improve various elements of the previous altar set. The presiders chair was made from oak that was originally intended for an altar rail for a Boston church back in 1992. The long aging process made the wood very stable which is important for this type of joinery. The inside of the altar has the same fine detailing as the outside. The flooring and the 4 offertory candle benches were all made from recycled church pews.
This altar design has been retired. I will however continue to make chairs that will be similar in design. A previous blog item explains more about the original design and the initial amount of work there was to creating a set. The design's success, comes from creating each piece to be individually unique, beautiful and functional while also matching as a set.