The Story of the Shape: SaRang Church

  • Jul 26, 2016

When the pastor of SaRang Church envisioned a design for his congregation’s new church in central Seoul he wanted the new building to embody openness.  The church needed to be open and welcoming to all those who walked through its doors. More than 45,000 people attend services at SaRang Church each week, making it one of the more popular “megachurches” in South Korea.

Rick del Monte, Chief Design Officer and Jay Chung, Director of Korea Operations were the architects tasked with turning that vision into a three-dimensional space.

Here how they brought the pastor’s desire for openness to life through design:

  • The 6,800-seat below-grade sanctuary was designed without columns to create a sense of openness and connection among churchgoers.
  • Instead of designing one building the team designed two curvilinear glass buildings connected by a sky bridge to create more open space.
  • The glass walls of each building slope upward to open to the sky above.
  • The oval global ministry plaza between the buildings is open to the local public and features a map of the world symbolizing the church’s openness to the world beyond its property.

Watch this video to learn more here about the how Rick and Jay tackled this project and brought this commonly shared vision to life.