Ancilla Domini Chapel
You’re sure to find some peace and inspiration when you stop at this lovely chapel on an idyllic campus among the lakes and cornfields of Northern Indiana. The property was purchased in 1918 by the Poor Handmaids of Jesus Christ, a group of Catholic sisters who immigrated from Germany. They bought the land for retreat, rest and relaxation and built the Chapel in the Cornfield in 1923.
The chapel, officially known as The Ancilla Domini Chapel, brings together incredible features from around the world. Neo-Gothic columns decorated with ancient Greek and Roman designs soar up as if reaching toward heaven. German artisans created the baroque-style stained glass windows and wood-carved statues. The rich altars, made of butternut and golden oak, were built in LaCrosse, Wisconsin, and hauled to Donaldson in freight wagons. Stand under the soaring ceiling that features images of angels supporting symbols of Mary as queen, and view the huge pipe organ, a masterpiece built in Pennsylvania.
In 1923 the large pipe organ was built by Louis Van Dinter of Mishawaka, Indiana as his last masterpiece. The pipes were made in Pennsylvania by Gottfried, a firm famous for the art of voicing organ pipes.
The organ was rebuilt and expanded in 1989. In 1997 the organ was completely rebuilt by the Daniel Bogue Associates, subcontractors for the Wicks Organ Company of Highland, Illinois. In 2013 the organ was cleaned and rebuilt by AB Organ Service. The Organ now has 21 ranks in 3 divisions of: Great, Swell, and Pedal, and 1,291 pipes. The case of the organ is solid white oak, finished in golden oak.
Here’s a link to the guided video tour of the chapel on YouTube.