Pulpits and Lecterns

Featured product article from Church Furniture Store

“And he read therein before the street that was before the water gate from the morning until midday, before the men and the women, and those that could understand; and the ears of all the people were attentive unto the book of the law. And Ezra the scribe stood upon a pulpit of wood, which they had made for the purpose; and beside him stood Mattithiah, and Shema, and Anaiah, and Urijah, and Hilkiah, and Maaseiah, on his right hand; and on his left hand, Pedaiah, and Mishael, and Malchiah, and Hashum, and Hashbadana, Zechariah, and Meshullam” (Nehemiah 8:3-4).

Walk-In Pulpit
The word “pulpit” comes from the Latin word “pulpitum”, which means a platform or staging. Pulpits are used in the church by members of the clergy for giving sermons and preaching the Word of God. In a typical Protestant church, the pulpit is placed in front of the congregation, usually on a raised platform, and any other pulpit furniture is placed around the centrally located pulpit. A communion table is generally placed in front of the pulpit and sometimes off of the raised platform. Minister’s chairs and associate pastor’s chairs are placed behind, yet away, from the pulpit.

In other types of churches, such as Catholic churches, the pulpit might be set off to one side of the raised platform in front of the congregation. In this type of set up, there might be a lectern set off to the opposite side of the raised platform. Lecterns are similar to podiums, which are speaking stands that are typically smaller and less grand in appearance than the pulpit. When lay people make presentations to the congregation, they often use the lectern instead of the podium.

The official origin of the pulpit is not known, although there is a progression that can be seen through parts of history beginning with a piece of furniture known as the ambo, which might have been a small table from which scripture was read. There is reference to a “pulpitum” by Cyprian, the Bishop of Carthage, within one of his letters. In this case, however, the pulpitum referred to a raised wooden platform on which clergy delivered the message, but surely played into the practice of elevating the pastor above the congregation in what is today known as the pulpit.

Church Furniture Store features many styles of pulpits, from the modest and traditional to

the intricate and grand. For a church seeking a more reserved, smaller pulpit, the Chapel
Lion of Judah Pulpit
pulpit is ideal. Measuring 35 inches wide, 16.5 inches deep and 48 inches tall, this pulpit features an adjustable bible rest, back-side storage and shelving on compact wings in a budget-friendly package.

However, if your church is looking for something with more pizzazz, we have many pulpit styles to choose from. Our Lion of Judah Pulpit features cross pattern carvings for a bolder statement. Or you might prefer the stately elegance of our #830 pulpit, which features an acrylic center which can be adorned with your choice of a customized logo or our signature three-cross emblem.

Elim Pulpit
Just like our wood pulpits, our lecterns are made by hand in our on-site woodshop. Our announcement stands are made of solid oak wood, and are available in more traditional styles or a curved style. The 720 adds a contemporary look to your sanctuary or classroom with two curved down posts that give the piece an open design.

If you don’t see exactly what you are looking for on our website, contact us to see if we can customize a piece specifically to your liking. Give us a call at 540-484-4913 or reach out to us through our website: https://www.churchfurniturestore.com/index.html

In part one of “Deconstructing a Quality Church Chair” we discussed the importance of having a strong core base like plywood to ensure that your chair will hold up under consistent use and weight pressure. Equally as important and in the same context is the chair frame. The combination of the chair core material and the chair frame are the determining factor in how much weight your church chair will be able to hold. Safety, above all other factors, is the most important baseline for a church chair. A variety of demands will be placed on any given church chair in any given sanctuary, and the seating must be adequate to accommodate any demand that is placed on it.

Because safety, quality, and chair longevity are so important to us, all of our full size church chairs feature welded, sixteen gauge, steel frames. These steel frames are finished with a hardened powder coating for a smooth and visually appealing final product. This not only guarantees they are able to handle a weight load, it also gives them a higher stacking ability. Because of this increased stacking ability, included on these steel frames are stacking buttons. Stacking buttons are impact absorbing plastic knobs located on the inside of the frame legs that extend beyond the steel framing so that, rather than steel on steel stacking, it becomes plastic button on steel stacking. This method helps to avoid frame scratches from consistent frame friction. The same friction absorbing material used for the buttons is used to form a curved cap for the feet of the chair so that there is no scratching of floors or pulling of carpet.

All of our church chair frames also include welded ganging devices on both sides of the chair that allow for chair interlocking.  These welded steel “hooks” follow a lift and lower in place pattern and accomplish two important goals: First, it creates the same seating ability as a traditional church pew because the chairs form into one extended bench that maximizes seating space and second, it creates seating that complies with the common fire codes for public gathering places. Many of our church chairs also have welded in book racks underneath the seat, or have an option to install book racks on a seat to seat premise based on need.

When you have a plywood seat and back and a well gauged, welded steel frame with stacking buttons and ganging devices, you have the core of a quality church chair.

There are many styles and options to choose from when deciding on the right church chair for your church building. While color, shape, features, and quantity are all things to consider, underlying all of those is the most important question: is it a quality built chair? In this blog series we will be “Deconstruction a Quality Church Chair” so that you will know the elements that constitute a church chair constructed with integrity for guaranteed endurance through years of use.

In this first installment we will look at the very core of a church chair; the wood base for the seat and back. Through our 20+ years in the church furniture industry we have seen many types of wood used in chair construction including particle board, pressed board, chip board, and recycled board. While a recycled board may sound like a positive thing at first, when recycled is mentioned in regards to a church chair it means that it potentially was previously used as a concrete form on a construction site. Yes, we have seen it, complete with residue concrete traces and signs of heavy former use. You may be surprised what you find when you peel away the fabric and the foam of your chairs. We’ve conversed with many churches and pastors that have shown us stacks of church chairs with broken seats and backs after only a short time of use. We have taken special note of these chairs, deconstructing them to inspect the points of weakness that made these inferior chairs. Using weak or already used wood in a church chair is nearly a promise for a short lifespan and a disappointing end result.

We have found that the half inch thick plywood that is standard in all of the church chairs we offer is far superior to any other choices on the market for reliability and durability. We care deeply about the satisfaction of our customers and the integrity of our products. We offer warranties with all of our chairs because we believe in the quality of construction and materials used to complete them. Having a strong plywood core means that your church chair has the first step covered in the construction of a quality church chair.

From grand European cathedrals, to ultra-modern buildings with a sound system rivaling that of a concert venue, to the small country church with rows of wooden pews and a single isle down the center of the building; church styles and designs have taken on many forms through the years. What determines the style of a church? There are many factors that cultivate the look and shape that a church takes on including the time in history it is built, the area in which it is built, and the people and culture it is reaching. Christianity was not legally recognized as a religion until 313 A.D. by Roman Emperor Constantine, but the earliest verified church building can be dated back to somewhere in the 240s A.D. at a location called Dura Europos which was situated along the Euphrates River, (according to Archaeology magazine).

By Botsojoy at English Wikipedia, CC BY-SA 3.0
Prior to this, churches generally met in homes or public areas where larger gatherings could be accommodated. Much of the furnishings and design of our modern day church and the churches throughout history came from the Roman Catholic Church. Pulpits, communion tables, pews, stages and more can be attributed to the season in the church after Emperor Constantine recognized Christianity and allowed for funds to be given for building purposes. These funds helped to establish church buildings and larger gathering places for church services to be held. As Christianity became an increasingly prominent and recognized religion, more and more churches were constructed and a variety of styles were adopted.

Cathedrals, parishes, basilicas and abbey churches all have their roots in interesting historical seasons and locations and each one tells a unique story. Many early American churches were built much smaller and with simpler designs than their European reflections as America was still developing. But all church buildings served a very important purpose; to provide a gathering place for the church to meet together, worship together, and be taught in unison. Today we have a beautiful mixture and
variety of church buildings ranging from Roman cathedrals with wooden pews, steeples with bells, and dark wood ornamentation over a thousand years old to converted strip malls with coffee shops, colorful church chairs, and drum sets and guitars on stage. While most churches that are built today follow a more contemporary building design, regardless of where you worship and gather together and what the building looks like, we can all appreciate the truth that has endured through every culture and style from the beginning of the church, “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life,” (John 3:16, Bible).

Featured product article from Church Furniture Store

Baptism is not only a public confession of our faith, it is representative of our new birth as a Christian. We have appropriately named our most aesthetically pleasing portable baptistery after the place where Jesus was baptized – the Jordan River.

The summer months are a great time for churches to perform baptisms outside during church events and gatherings.

The Jordan Series portable baptistery is a great solution for churches looking for a less expensive or movable option for baptizing Christians.
 Smaller churches often prefer the easy mobility of portable baptisteries for indoor baptisms as well. Blue Ridge Church Furniture added the Jordan series to the portable baptistery family in 2016, and it still catches a lot of attention. This sleek and contemporary version of our Model B baptistery features a handsome espresso finish with light oak trim. It’s the only portable baptistery that we sell that automatically arrives finished and ready to use.

Just like our original Model B, the Jordan Series comes standard with a heavy-duty wheel kit for easy transport, a matching oak lid, a decorative cross to attach to the front, and entry steps that feature non-skid strips for your congregation’s safety. The steps can be stored inside of the baptistery when not in use.

Measuring 6’6” long, 35.5” wide and 38.25” high, this baptistery is the perfect size for wheeling down the sanctuary aisle or through tight spots within the church. A rear access door that opens to the drain makes emptying the tub a breeze. Simply connect a basic garden hose and open the valve and the water will drain out of the tub.

Don’t forget additional items that you might need to complement your baptistery. Do you need a baptistery heater? Would an insulated vinyl cover help? Would the protective Aqua-Seal coating be beneficial? We are happy to help find a solution to all of your church’s baptism needs.

Consistently throughout the Bible, God calls us to pray. There are numerous reasons for prayer, but the simple desire to communicate with God should drive us to our knees. In early churches, worshipers would kneel on the floor of the church or on the ground, depending on the building. However, in many instances, worshipers would demonstrate humility by lying with their face to the ground.

The ultimate position of humbleness is to lie prostrate in prayer to the Lord. Throughout the Bible, in times of crisis and need or in thanksgiving to God, worshipers would fall on their face and pray. “And Abram fell on his face: and God talked with him, saying, As for me, behold, my covenant is with thee, and thou shalt be a father of many nations” (Genesis 17:3).And it came to pass, when he was in a certain city, behold a man full of leprosy: who seeing Jesus fell on his face, and besought him, saying, Lord, if thou wilt, thou canst make me clean” (Luke 5:12).

Wood Prayer KneelerPrayer position is important in that it is an outward manifestation of what we are feeling. A common Christian prayer posture is to bow your head, whether seated or standing. But how many of us have come before God in a moment of crisis or during a stressful situation beyond our control and literally hit our knees or fell on our face before Him? Our body language echoes the woes of our hearts and shows reverence to whom we speak. This is why many churches offer kneeling furniture, even if kneeling is not part of the worship service.

Kneelers are an important staple in many church sanctuaries. Some churches – especially Catholic churches - have pews that contain built-in kneelers. These kneelers are used throughout the service during the Catholic Mass ritual. Confessional booths in Catholic churches and in some Anglican churches might also contain kneelers.

You might see altar rails with built-in kneelers in many Catholic, Anglican, Lutheran, and Methodist churches. Within the Catholic Church, church members can kneel and receive communion from their priest. In the Lutheran Church, altar rails are sometimes accessible to members who wish to give confession to their pastor. Altar rails are used in some Methodist churches as a means of receiving communion and during confirmation, in which congregation members seek to become members of the church after a confession of faith.

“Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father” (Philippians 2:9-11).

In Matthew, Jesus describes Himself as “Meek and lowly in heart” (Matthew 11:29). If this is the character of our Lord and Savior, and if we are to try to model our behavior after Him, then seeking a meek position during our prayer time, when possible, should be a goal.