Stephens Chapel nears completion

Construction of the Stephens Chapel presses on

By Ashley Rodriguez
On September 13, 2019

Photo by Ian Saint: Construction of the Stephens Chapel is well underway. The $1.92 million cost was entirely funded by F.L. “Steve” and Pollyanna Stephens.

A place for praise, worship and prayer. The Stephens Chapel, which will tentatively open in November, will be a place for students, faculty, staff and the community to unite together.

A groundbreaking ceremony took place on April 17 for the establishment of this $1.92 million project. Once completed, the chapel will serve a variety of purposes.

“The chapel can be used for religious functions, a quiet sanctuary and a place to relax,” said Cody Guins, director of facilities planning and construction.

According to an ASU news release, the chapel will have several features, including a sacristy, sanctuary, narthex, portico, bride’s room, groom’s room and service areas. The 3,100-square-foot chapel is finished with stone tile, stained glass windows, wood deck ceilings, custom light fixtures and custom pews.

“The Stephens Chapel is going to be a beautiful building and a wonderful centerpiece for the Angelo State campus,” Dr. Brian May, president of ASU, said in a news release. “In addition to campus services, we look forward to hosting a lot of weddings.”

A generous donation from F.L. “Steve” and Pollyanna Stephens made construction of the chapel possible. The Stephens are also the namesake for the Stephens Arena inside the Junell Center.

“The Stephens are a spiritual couple who are from the San Angelo area,” Guins said. “Mr. Stephens was the former CEO and co-founder of Town & Country Food Stores Inc., which has given them a strong connection with the community of San Angelo.”

Guins said the chapel will be an interfaith place for students and not geared to one specific denomination or religion. With this construction, ASU joins other public universities in the region, like Texas Tech University, who also have a chapel on campus.

“It also shows that here at ASU, and the community, that their faith is important whatever it might be,” Guins said. “Dr. May and all of the administrative staff are all very accepting of all religious faiths. We want our community to know that those things are important to us and it’s something ASU has to offer.”

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