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First Baptist Church Sacred Garden

Asheville NC


VDC-FBCA-11-11-15 web
custom granite water feature
sacred garden
custom stone path
stage view
Sacred Garden-1

The sacred garden sits just to the north of the sanctuary, enclosed by tall brick walls. Design elements throughout the garden take cues from the architectural style and motifs of the historic church. The design intent was to blend the two together, creating an outdoor space that not only compliments the unique architecture of the existing church, but will also stand as a lasting and timeless space, creating a legacy for future generations to appreciate and enjoy.

At the centerpiece of the garden is a contemplative 44' diameter natural stone labyrinth scribed from bluestone & tennesee buff sandstone (seen above), whose design inspiration was drawn from the Chartres Cathedral labyrinth in France.  The openness and size of the labyrinth lends itself to being a multi-use space able to support small services and intimate gatherings.  


The sacred garden also includes a meditative area, with a stream inspired stone pathway that leads people to a cascading wall fountain and seating area. On the eastern end of the sacred garden lies a more intimate columbarium space, arranged into four private wall niches where ashes of loved ones are interned. At the centerpiece of the columbarium is a still reflection pool which brings the sky down into this intimate setting and serves as a place for contemplation. 


In developing the vision and detailing of the garden, VDC worked closely with a multi-disciplinary team that included local architects McMillan, Pazdan, Smith and McGill Associates Engineers, and a local stone craftsman Marc Archambault with Hammerhead Stoneworks, Medallion Pools, as well as the church design committee members. 

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