The new chapel, parish hall, courtyard and offices for Sacred Heart Church were designed with sympathy for the existing historic structures. The parish is a designated historical site containing the church, designed by Lewis Gill, the nephew and partner of Irving Gill, dedicated in 1920; a convent, built in 1950; and former parish hall. The convent remodel and new parish center provide modern business and ministry areas, while preserving Gill’s classical San Diego architecture.
The courtyard gathering space leads to a focal point, the new St. Francis Chapel. Its interior raises the eyes and spirits to heights of open beam ceilings and natural light. The courtyard is surrounded by graceful arches, inspired by Gill’s details, providing pleasant pathways and shade for outdoor events. One enters the parish center through the archway into open spaces, high ceilings, natural light and a modernized stage for ministry, social, and school use. Community organizations have already looked at holding events here in addition to religious gatherings. While retaining the historic ministry center (convent) exterior, the rejuvenated office building provides both open areas and private offices for activities including youth activity planning, educational programs, and private pastoral meetings.
Through open areas, natural lighting, and simple lines sympathetic to Gill’s aesthetics, the modern functionality and design are welcoming. It’s the perfect unity of history and modernization for religious and community gatherings.