Chapel of Perfect Friendship Renamed in Honor of the Class of 1963

4 min read

Melina Korfonta ’25

News Editor

The Class of 1963 was honored in a ceremony at the College on Monday, Apr. 4, for its generous donation towards repairs for the Chapel. Scott Reynolds ‘63, P’92, H’11, who is familiar with the initiative, told the Tripod that around $3.2 million was raised to repair the roof which will prevent further leaking. The Class of 1963 will be remembered in the Chapel with inscriptions incorporated in architectural features. Reynolds indicated that these features may include wall sconces and chandeliers.  

A large sum of the recent donation was made by Gary Knisely ‘63 from two matured charitable remainder trusts that he created around 20 years earlier when he sold his Manhattan-based executive search firm. “I wanted Trinity to use the trust proceeds to meet an important need,” said Knisely. Knisely was recognized by President Berger-Sweeney during the ceremony on April 4th. 

“Chapel repairs are a key priority of the current capital campaign and we are very proud of our leadership,” stated Reynolds in an email to the Tripod. These repairs have already begun and scaffolding and other equipment is currently located outside of the Chapel. Reynolds noted that: “The work will be done as donations are received to pay for it, so I don’t think there is a definite schedule. Once the leaks have been stopped, the program to install donated art from a Boston church will continue.” 

This initiative to establish a fund for the Chapel began during the Class’s 55th reunion in 2018. Reynolds told the Tripod that “then Chaplain Allison Read invited classmates to a meeting in the Chapel where she announced that the Chapel would be a priority of the upcoming capital campaign. Donations would be solicited not only for repairs, but also to expand chapel programming.”  

“Four members of the Class of 1963 volunteered to join the committee (myself, Tom Calabrese, Bill Howland and Mike Schulenberg). Not long after that, one of our class leaders, Marshall Blume, died very suddenly. This was a terrible jolt to us, and an effort was undertaken to think of ways we might remember those no longer with us. Because of the very special bonds among classmates, the idea of raising money for the Chapel in honor of our classmates surfaced and was accepted by the College,” added Reynolds.  

The fundraising for this special project was led by Reynolds, Jim Tozer, Tom Calabrese, Bill Howland, and Mike Schulenberg. Reynolds emphasized that The Chapel of the Perfect Friendship was “dedicated to the ideals that were already exemplified by the Class of 1963, so the renaming of the Friendship Chapel in honor of the Class of 1963 was quickly embraced and broadly supported.” 

With the continuous participation and friendship of the Class of ‘63, Jim Tozer ’63, P’89, ’90, GP’22 stated in the ceremony: “There’s a certain pride and a certain pleasure among my classmates that through bonds of friendship and our broadly shared commitment to the Class of 1963 Scholarship, our class has stayed uniquely close to each other… Given these multidimensional ties of quite perfect friendship, why not have the class take a leadership role in funding the Chapel renovation in the name of the Chapel of the Perfect Friendship?” 

Responding to questions about his support for the Chapel, Reynolds told the Tripod that “There is no more welcoming place on campus, no matter your religious affiliation.” Reynolds mentioned that during his time as Secretary of the College, he recognized the important leadership role the Chaplains of the time held on campus. Renyolds highlighted the leadership of Steve Charleston, Dan Heischman, and Allison Read. Reynolds also noted that his favorite part of the Chapel was the music: “Starting with Clarence Waters, then John Rose, and Today Christopher Houlihan, Trinity has always had a world class organist, and of course a world class organ.” Renyolds indicated that the recent move of the Albert Schweitzer Festival to campus was made in recognition of Trinity’s importance in organ music. “Some of my fondest memories have to do with the organ concerts that continue to this day, summer carillon concerts and Lessons and Carols which I was honored to participate in several times.”  

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