Seeley G. Mudd Chapel is the first building on campus in which Whitworth considered the significance and symbolism of art as an integral part of the building’s design. The chapel’s simplicity directs one’s focus on God, and its use of natural light provides warmth and keeps the earth and sky in view. At the front of the sanctuary is a vertical window featuring a cross of blue and red stained glass; iron thorns overlaying the cross depict Christ’s crown; a circle surrounding the crown represents the redeemed world. Daylight filtering through the glass, and the pine trees in view through the window blend Whitworth’s heritage of the Reformed tradition and the iconic beauty of campus.
The cross was designed by Spokane artist Dede McKay, who won a design competition, and was fabricated by Ed Humphreys, of Whitman College in Walla Walla, Wash. The cross was funded through a gift from Whitworth alumni Ron, ’57, and Janet Jongeward, ’55, in memory of their daughter, Susan, whose September 1979 memorial was the first service held in the newly completed chapel.