The Parish Church of Saint Matthew Big Lamp ~ Newcastle
The Building - The Chancel
Around   from   the   organ   we   find   the   Chancel   raised   and surrounded    by    a    low    wall.        The    word    "Chancel" derives   from   the   Latin   word   "to   sing".      It   is   the   area where   the   choir   sits.      The   choir   includes   both   singers and   also   clergy   who   do   not   have   ministerial   roles   in   a Liturgy - "the choir clergy". Fifth   century   churches   often   had   similar   low   walls.      As the   years   passed,   the   walls   became   higher   until   they evolved   into   the   Medieval   Chancel   Screen.      The   wall   at Saint Matthew's is decorated with symbols of the Passion (Suffering) and Crucifixion of Christ. In   front   of   the   Chancel   Gates,   is   the   Lectern   from   which   the   Bible   is   read   at Mass    and    some    other    services.        Whilst    the    Lectern    is    of    a    common ecclesiastical    design,    its    dimensions    are    larger    than    in    many    churches, reflecting the spaciousness of S Matthew's The   wall   bounding   the   Western   boundary,   the   gates   and   the   pulpit were   introduced   in   memory   of   Father   Oliver   Churchyard,   the   second Vicar.      The   floor   of   Frosterley   surrounding   the   brass   is   the   memorial of   Father   Robert   Daunt,   the   first   Vicar,   who   put   the   project   of   Saint Matthew's in hand. The   choir   stalls   are   arranged   in   collegiate   fashion   with   the   Vicar's stall    in    a    return    stall    under    the    Easterly    Chancel    wall.        Stated charitably,   the   choir   stalls   are   unremarkable   and   may   bear   testament to the shortage of funds.