Synod House occupies the southwestern corner of the Cathedral’s 13-acre campus, at the intersection of Amsterdam Avenue and 110th Street. Like the Cathedral Nave, its grand hall, known as Synod Hall, was designed by the architectural firm of Cram and Ferguson. Synod House was completed in time for the 1913 General Convention of the Episcopal Church, and retains its name, “synod,” from the formal term for a council of church officials.
The House is built in a neo-Gothic style, evidenced by the pointed arches of its doors and windows and the regular standing buttresses along its walls. The main portal on its west front features 36 carved figures, which represent ancient and modern apostles, as well as prominent individuals in the arts, sciences, and crafts, including founding father George Washington and the architect Christopher Wren.
Synod House contains the Bishop’s offices. Its Hall provides a gathering place for a variety of events, which occur under its carved timber roof beams and colorful grisaille windows, designed by Charles J. Connick. The Hall can seat up to 1,000 people, and is equipped with its own Skinner organ. Each December, Synod Hall opens to the public for the Cathedral’s annual Holiday Craft Fair, featuring the wares of dozens of professional artisans and artists.