Tabernacle

A small cupboard in the choir or in a specially designated chapel in which the consecrated hosts are kept.

PulpitPulpit

A piece of church furniture, now mostly in disuse, consisting of a high platform from which the preacher addressed the congregation. Usually, a pulpit is located in the middle on the south side of the church.

Choir stalls

A series of seats, usually in wood, along the long sides of the choir. These seats are reserved for those who pray and sing the choir prayers.

Baptismal font

The stone or metal vessel containing holy water, used for administering baptism. Often the baptismal font is/was located in a specially designed baptistery, usually close to the entrance of the church.

Communion rail

A low enclosure of the choir or a chapel in the form of a long kneeling pew. Before the Second Vatican Council, it was customary to receive communion kneeling on at this pew.

Confessional

A piece of furniture that was especially designed to facilitate the sacrament of confession, especially by avoiding that confessor and penitent come face to face. To the left and right are kneeling pews for penitents; in the middle is a small booth where the confessor sits. Both are separated from each other by a partition […]

Ambo

A raised podium in a church between the choir and the nave or transept.

Altar enclosure

A wooden or marble construction around an altar that demarcates the space reserved for the priest. In Antwerp, altar enclosures can still be seen in Saint Andrew’s Church.

Altar

The altar is the central piece of furniture used in the Eucharist. Originally, an altar used to be a sacrificial table. This fits in with the theological view that Jesus sacrificed himself, through his death on the cross, to redeem mankind, as symbolically depicted in the painting “The Adoration of the Lamb” by the Van […]