Project Canterbury

An American Cloister

The Life and Work of the Order of the Holy Cross

By Shirley Carter Hughson, O.H.C.

West Park, New York: Holy Cross Press, 1948.

Appendix. St. Augustine's Memorial Chapel.

ST. AUGUSTINE'S CHAPEL at Holy Cross was consecrated with a service of unusual splendour by the Right Reverend William T. Manning, D.D., Bishop of New York, on the Feast of St. Francis of Assisi, October 4, 1921. A great company of the friends of the Order were present, among them being the Right Reverend Charles B. Colmore, D.D., Bishop of Puerto Rico, who assisted in the sanctuary, and about seventy-five of the reverend clergy. The sermon on this occasion was preached by the Reverend Frank L. Vernon, D.D., rector of St. Mark's Church, Philadelphia.

Saint Augustine's Chapel is a munificent gift, erected as a memorial to the late William Masters Camac, Esq., of Philadelphia, by his widow. Mr. Camac was an old friend of the Order of the Holy Cross, a devout Catholic, and for many years a vestryman of St. Mark's Church, Philadelphia. It was especially fitting that the permanent Chapel at the mother-house of the Order should be in his memory. Not only had he been associated with the Order from its beginning, but it is recalled as a happy incident that one of the first buildings erected by the Order in the last century--the Chapel of the summer home at Farmingdale, Long Island--was designed by Mr. Camac, who was himself an architect.

The plans for Saint Augustine's Chapel were drawn by Messrs. Cram and Ferguson, of Boston.

[128] The style is tenth century Italian, a pleasing combination of grace and solidity. It is built of native stone, with trimmings of brick and limestone.

The choir is constructed for about sixty stalls, and the spaces outside the choir will accommodate about one hundred and twenty-five worshippers. This affords opportunity for large retreats for men.

The crypt beneath the sanctuary gives room for several chapels, the main one, dedicated to St. Michael. Owing to the slope of the hill upon which it is built, we have an upper church and a lower church, a miniature, as it were, of the great Church of St. Francis at Assisi.

In St. Michael's Chapel in this crypt, beneath an altar of chaste and severe beauty, reared by the gifts of devoted friends in every part of America, lie the sacred remains of our saintly founder, James Otis Sargent Huntington, of blessed memory, who went to his rest on the feast of St. Peter and St. Paul, 1935. Of your charity, say a prayer for his soul.

Project Canterbury