Casavant, Opus 3759, 1997
Two manuals and pedals, 25 stops, 32 ranks
Movable tablet console, compass 61/32
Construction on the Church of the Incarnation began in the Spring of 1872 and was completed the next year, making it the oldest church structure in continuous use in Santa Rosa. Local legend relates that the church was constructed from the wood of two redwood trees. In 1885 the building was quartered, drawn apart and enlarged. Although the sidewalls bulged some eight inches off the foundation during the 1906 earthquake, the building remained unaltered until 1997 when the chancel was enlarged in preparation for the new organ.
The focal point at the front of the room was, and remains a large stained-glass window and reredos. The organ was placed at the end of the extended chancel with the window and reredos in the same plane as the organ façade. The organ design grew out of discussions to provide flexibility and color for service playing, anthem accompaniment and support for the congregation in singing hymns and the liturgy. There was not sufficient space to develop a traditional three manual instrument so the Grand Orgue is composed of the principal chorus and Trompette 8’. The other flues normally found on this division have been placed in an expression enclosure and augmented to form a nine-stop Choeur division that has its home on the first manual but may be coupled to the Récit for flexibility. The ten-stop Récit contains strings, individual colors in flutes and reeds plus sufficient resources to provide impressive crescendo-decrescendo effects. Although primarily designed as an instrument for worship, it is also used for recitals.
When the organ was played for the first services…it was an emotional, powerful experience for the congregation. They sang out with gusto and many were moved to tears.
—Shirley Dempel, Organ Committee Chairperson, September 25, 1997