CANADIAN MARTYRS CATHOLIC CHURCH


Richmond, BC

The design was predicated on a sloping roof form, descending from the east to the entrance to the west. The intent was to bring parishioners closer to God through the more human-scaled entrance, rising majestically to the altar. As in any church design, the spaces within and the forms of the building itself, must speak about God.

One of the very unique features in the church is the wall at the sanctuary, which is canted toward the congregation and describing three frames. The centre frame helps focus the altar against a textured wall behind, where the tabernacle is housed. The two other portals house a shrine for the eight Canadian Martyrs and a niche for the Virgin Mary that also serves as a focus for the baptismal font. These three frames together symbolize the Holy Trinity.

The high windows at both the north and south ends of the church and the skylights above the altar symbolize the light of God and also serve the practical purposes of providing natural light and shielding the church from the busy everyday life of the traffic outside the building.