The Cathedral - The Cathedra
The Bishop's chair was completed for Bishop Melczek's Mass of Pastoral Commitment in July of 1996. The original Cathedra was removed in 1972. The present Cathedra is sculpted from black walnut. The design of the Cathedra is intended to express both its location in this church and its connection to the Diocese of Gary. The arched back is reminiscent of the pointed window arches and the gentle arch over the Blessed Sacrament area. The woven back of the Cathedra is black walnut carved from one piece. The woven back is representational of the weave of cultures that make up the Diocese. The angel that stands to the right of the Cathedra is a reminder of the patrons of the Diocese, the Holy Angels. The angel is also a symbol of the inspiration of the Holy Spirit for the Bishop of the Diocese as well as a sign of guidance in his decisions.
The angel is offset by the colorful coat of arms on the left side of the Cathedra. This is Bishop Melczek's coat of arms. This particular rendition was hand stitched by a member of the Methodist Church in Griffith. It is a sign of the Bishop's office as one who is charged to build up unity among all Christians. The Cathedra sits in the midst of the “presbytery” (that is: the place for the presbyters (priests) and also deacons). This placement teaches us that all pastoral and sacramental ministry flow from the primary Pastor, the Bishop.