Image of Daniel McCarthy - presbyterium
Central Altar

The central altar (in profile) under the great dome and lantern of St Louis Abbey Church, contrasts with the Roman practice of placing the altar off-centre, so that the ciborium over the altar expresses the Spirit hovering over the gifts, and the dome expresses the gift of the Spirit upon the assembly gathered below. This altar usurps the axis mundi, pole of the earth, so that monks cannot lie prostrate below for profession, ordination or funeral vigil.