Providing spiritual and personal
support to students, faculty,
staff, and the MIT community
There are currently about 25 active and long-standing religious organizations on campus that are based in Building W11, the Religious Activities Center. Chaplains representing major faith communities devote all or a large part of their time to on-campus activities, counseling individual students, and advising student religious organizations. In addition, there are para-church groups served by chaplains and interns working on campus during the school year. These groups are all supported by outside funding.
Religious, moral and ethical convictions are important personal identity markers, and the Institute provides all members of the MIT community the opportunity to freely express their beliefs. The chaplain to the Institute monitors that responsibility and offers support and counsel in times of loss and trauma.
The Office of Religious Life is committed to the principle of equal opportunity in education and employment and adheres to the Institute’s nondiscrimination policy as described here.
Who designed the bell tower on the MIT Chapel?
Click here for a presentation on the bell tower.
Who designed the metal sculpture in the MIT Chapel?
For more information, click here to listen to a presentation on the work and Bertoia.
Who designed the MIT Chapel?
The building’s unique appearance was new to a campus that had previously employed a more classical architecture style. After some criticism, Saarinen explained that the chapel’s windowless cylinder “implied the self-contained, inward-feeling which was desirable” for a place of worship. He noted that its undulating interior walls promoted good acoustics as well as an “enclosed feeling.”
A stained glass entryway leads to the chapel, the centerpiece of which is a solid marble altar placed in the center of a circular marble platform. A metal sculpture by Harry Bertoia reflects light from the only window in the chapel, a beautiful domed skylight. The Chapel also features a 1,300-pound bell cast at MIT in the Metals Processing Laboratory and a 768-pipe organ designed by Walter Holtkamp.