Snyder Sanctuary serves campus’ spiritual needs

Outside the Snyder Sanctuary a dusk.
A recent survey conducted at Lynn noted that 75 percent of incoming students identify themselves as spiritual.

Thanks to Stephen F. Snyder, vice chair of Lynn’s board of trustees, and his wife Jamie, students and staff of all faiths and beliefs now have a special place on campus to serve their spiritual needs.

“It seems that there is a need for a non-denominational place on campus where our diverse, international student community can come together to explore values and beliefs, search for meaning, meditate, enjoy music and celebrate life’s events,” Stephen Snyder said.

Lynn dedicated the magnificent Snyder Sanctuary on Nov. 12, 2015. This sacred place is the creation of Newman Architects, the same firm that designed the campus’ Keith C. and Elaine Johnson Wold Performing Arts Center and the Eugene M. and Christine E. Lynn Library.

“Regardless of our individual religious beliefs, we all have a sense of spirituality that affects us. [The Snyder Sanctuary] is a place of wonder and awe and fosters interchange and understanding of those shared ideas and feelings of spirituality and celebration of our diversity,” Herbert Newman said.

The origin of the design of the sanctuary can be found in the growth patterns of animals and plants. This hidden geometry of nature is related to the mathematical sequence of Fibonacci numbers—sometimes called nature’s numbering system—seen in everything from the spiral shapes of seashells and leaf and petal arrangements in plants to galaxies and hurricanes.

Seven walls form the space. Each wall leans on the one adjacent to it—altogether forming a strong, stable structure.

Snyder family
Jamie and Stephen Snyder with Therese and Barron Snyder and children Phoebe and Luke
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