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A brainchild of the great Lloyd Wright, the Wayfarers Chapel is full of sacred geometry and inspired beauty. With plenty of glass to let the sunlight, moonlight, and starlight pour in, man's connection with the heavens is ever-present. The scenic surroundings and gorgeous atmosphere have made this little chapel famous as a wedding venue. Even the most secular individuals cannot deny the charm and allure of this glass church, which was built as part of the Swedenborgian Church of America. Since the church is not strictly Catholic, Lutheran, or Orthodox but is something different altogether, visitors will have no trouble feeling included regardless of their denomination or lack thereof.

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The History & Architecture Of Wayfarers Chapel

Construction for the Wayfarers Chapel began in 1949 and was completed in 1951. The original structure included a tower that was destroyed in a landslide soon after being built. The church was built to commemorate Emanuel Swedenborg, an 18th-century Swedish philosopher, scientist, and Christian hermeneutician who inadvertently founded his own sect of Christianity based on a priori emanations from the Bible. At the time that Swedenborg was alive, in the post-enlightenment era of humanism and rationalized misbehavior, his writings were so pure that they were and still are considered divine revelations.

The design of the chapel is an example of organic architecture. Organic architecture is a philosophy of architecture that stresses the importance of harmony between man and nature. The age-old question of whether human grace perfects or destroys nature was answered by Thomas Aquinas, and organic architecture is an elucidation of his answer -- that human grace indeed perfects nature. The Warfarer's Chapel, like a lot of Lloyd Wright's projects, was built with the surrounding landscape in mind. It is located in the woods on the lush forested cliffs overlooking the Pacific Ocean.

Related: These Are The Oldest Churches In The World (And Their Histories)

How To Visit Wayfarers Chapel

While Wayfarers Chapel is in a tranquil and secluded location, it is easily accessible. From the heart of Los Angeles, the Glass Church is a mere 45-minute drive away. The I-110 S will bring travelers most of the way there. The Chapel is open seven days a week from 9 AM to 5 PM, and it is usually fine to walk in at any point between those hours.

  • Address: 5755 Palos Verdes Drive South, Rancho Palos Verdes, 90275, California, USA
  • Hours: 9 AM - 5 PM
  • Admission: Free
  • Sunday Service - 10 AM onwards
  • Phone Number: 1 (310) 377-1650
  • Email: contactus@wayfarerschapel.org

Visiting Wayfarers Chapel

Since the Chapel is often booked for private events, there may be restrictions on how freely visitors may peruse the area. Regardless of occupancy, the Wayfarers Chapel is worth viewing from the outside, and the glassy facade gives viewers a solid window into the interiors as well. Also, the Chapel sits on 3.5 acres of coastal redwood forest with fairy-like gardens and paths tastefully carved out. Visitors can spend an entire day picnicking, worshipping, and appreciating the splendor of the forest and ocean.

On Sundays, like in most churches, there are religious processions. Of course, visitors may not interrupt Sunday service. If they want to join in the prayers, they should consider joining the parish by registering online. The website is linked in the first paragraph of this article.

When visiting Wayfarers Chapel, donations are encouraged. The Chapel, like many houses of worship, relies on tithes, donations, and private events to make enough money to maintain the grounds. In many big cities where religious fervor has dried up, so has church funding, which has led to partial closures. This means that visitors often cannot walk into city churches at any time of the day and are relegated to only entering during mass or by invitation. Luckily, Wayfarers Chapel can afford to remain open to the public throughout the day, and donations help make that happen.

Related: This Incredible Glass Chapel In Eureka Springs Is Open To The PublicInterestingly, in Los Angeles style, the Wayfarers Chapel occasionally makes additional income through Hollywood. TV shows like The O.C., Lucifer, Revenge, and Beverley Hills 90210 have used the Chapel as a filming location. In addition to television, musicians like Clean Bandit, James Blake, and Pentatonix have filmed music videos and live performances in the sacred Glass Church.

Booking Wayfarers Chapel

Visitors may book the Chapel for a variety of services such as baptisms, memorials, weddings, and baby showers. There are set contribution costs for booking the Chapel for weddings. On weekends and holidays, the fee amounts to $6,400, while on weekdays, it costs $5,400. The Chapel website has a calendar of available dates to choose from, and there is a $200 booking fee to reserve one of them. The contributions are non-refundable, but couples are given the flexibility to change their selected date once, so long as it is done with enough notice.

In addition to the base cost of renting the Glass Church, being in a recession economy, the Chapel offers a number of add-ons for extra money. Add-ons include floral arrangements, candles, professional video recording, and stone engravings.

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