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In a joyous celebration of community, St. Albans last week returned to the beloved Little Sanctuary for the first time in the 2023-24 school year.


The Little Sanctuary was damaged by a severe late July thunderstorm that downed trees across the Cathedral Close and the greater Washington, D.C., area. Strong winds and torrential rain knocked a tree onto the roof of the building, which required a multi-day operation to remove.

Over the course of several weeks, repair crews worked tirelessly to assess and repair damage to the Little Sanctuary, as chapel was temporarily relocated next door to St. Alban’s Parish. We extend our gratitude to them for welcoming us into their worship space.  We also thank the members of our facilities, security, and operations teams for their efforts in the restoration and repair process.

The oldest chapel on the Cathedral Close, the Little Sanctuary was constructed at the request of Washington’s first bishop, the Right Rev. Henry Yates Satterlee, so that he might have a “pro-Cathedral” to celebrate Holy Communion until the Cathedral’s Bethlehem Chapel was completed. Centrally located on our campus but distinct from the rest of the buildings, the Little Sanctuary welcomes people of all traditions through hospitality and peace. 

Noted our senior chaplain, the Rev. Brooks Hundley: “The Little Sanctuary is alive again with the energy of student-centered chapels that invites attention to bigger things  through prayers, music, silence, and reflection on sacred stories. May it always hold our prayers for peace.”

The repairs are on a much smaller scale and separate from the upcoming renovation and expansion of the chapel, detailed in our recent strategic plan, which will allow every boy and teacher in the Upper School to be able to sit together inside the chapel once again.
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Located in Washington D.C.,  St. Albans School is a private, all boys day and boarding school. For more than a century, St. Albans has offered a distinctive educational experience for young men in grades 4 through 12. While our students reach exceptional academic goals and exhibit first-rate athletic and artistic achievements, as an Episcopal school we place equal emphasis upon moral and spiritual education.