Grace Lutheran Church, Tacoma, WA

P.O. Box 9292
Tacoma, WA 98490

Though Grace Lutheran Church has sold its buildings and property, much of the contents including the Schwidder liturgical art pieces are reportedly stored for another day. Grace was the home congregation for Professor Schwidder from the mid 1960’s through his death in 1998.
He was instrumental in working together with Chervenak (Seattle) architects in providing a worshipful design and furnishings in the late 1960’s. He also served the congregation as liturgical deacon for most of his years at Grace. The outside signage which bore his calligraphic style was moved from the street view and re-located above the main church entrance. The chalice/cross/flames became a logo for many years on stationery and service folders. The chancel area captured a sense of doxology, pedagogy and durability. The massive altar, though without lettering, has roughly chiseled facades. The towering altar cross and processional cross visually teach of the Christ in the Eucharist (though sacramentally present) as portrayed above the altar, was sacrificed to death as presented in the processional cross. The baptismal font vividly identifies the action of the Holy Spirit’s descent with gifts of faith and life. On the Gospel side of the Altar Cross is a sanctuary lamp and two other candles balanced with three candles on the Epistle side. A large and a small portable credence table provide matching utilitarian surfaces. Over years seasonal vestments were designed by Professor Schwidder, but fabricated by others – mostly altar guild members.

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