The Ethical Society of St Louis is a historic venue that houses a humanist congregation of the same name. Rather than follow religious scriptures and teachings, humanists are guided by the ideals of ethics, social justice and the general well-being of people. The building itself was designed by well-known modernist architect Harris Armstrong and eventually built in 1964. Since then, the venue has hosted countless events including weddings, reunions and the enchanting series of Candlelight concerts.
To get there, head to Clayton Road just west of the Galleria shopping mall. When you get close to the venue, look out for the striking skyward thrust of the roof.
Facts, Curiosities and Interesting Things about The Ethical Society of St Louis
1. Humanist values have formed the foundation of this place since the beginning
Although the building was only built in 1964, the congregation itself dates back to 1886. Founded by Felix Adler, the society was formed to give members the chance to discuss humanist ideals and encourage education among the working class. The congregation had an initial membership of 93 people and over 100 years later, this number had more than quadrupled.
2. An architectural dream
Designed by Harris Armstrong, the building is a marvel in itself. The tall thrust of the roof points upwards to symbolize society’s aim to bring out the best of the human spirit, and the wooden paneling of the interior is a stunning sight to see. The venue is also home to the first baroque tracker organ built in the St. Louis area which was donated to the congregation by Genevieve Hail in 1965.
3. Reformations have helped keep the venue alive
Over the years, the building has undergone multiple reformations and renovations. In 1947, over $5,673 was spent on repairing the damaged roof ($62,000 in 2018 dollars). In 1999, the congregation spent $733,000 to fund the construction of a new wing and elevator.
Candlelight concerts at The Ethical Society of St Louis
This season, Candlelight presents a spectacular series of concerts that celebrate a range of music genres, singers, bands and composers. From classical music legends like Vivaldi to more contemporary icons like Coldplay and Queen, these tributes pay tribute to music legends with the help of talented musicians and the enchanting glow of candlelight.
What else can you do at The Ethical Society of St Louis?
Every Sunday at 11am, The Ethical Society of St Louis host Platform, a weekly community meeting open to everyone. The meeting usually consists of open discussions, Q&A sessions and live musical performances. Additionally, the society runs educational programs for elementary-aged kids and youth groups for middle/high schoolers. They also run a weekly coffee hour where people can chat with other visitors and enjoy a cup of fair trade coffee or tea.
The Ethical Society of St Louis is a historic building located on the outskirts of the city, and the congregation that call this place home is a welcoming family open to all. Together with Majorette, the venue also hosts St Louis’ enchanting series of concerts by Candlelight. Thanks to the breathtaking live music performances and mesmerizing glow of candlelight, these concerts make for the perfect evening plan to be enjoyed with friends, family, that special someone or all on your own.