I know many of you are eagerly awaiting an update on the status of our sanctuary renovation project. In my last update (in July via Friday Flocknote video), I shared that we were working through several delays. Many of these same challenges continue, but my team and I are navigating through them. Some of the factors contributing to these delays include fluctuating costs in material production, availability of materials, and construction shortages. Progress is being made—though much of it is behind the scenes—and the project does continue to move forward despite the challenges.
I am happy to share about two recent developments: through the support of generous donors, we have ordered a new tabernacle and a statue of Saint Joseph, which will be part of a new side altar design. (See images below). If you are interested to see the rendering of what the overall sanctuary design will look like, you can visit smarymag.org/renovation or look for the poster in the narthex.
We are currently looking at a post-Christmas start date for actual construction, with anticipated completion by early April. Lord-willing, this will put us worshiping in the renovated sanctuary in time for Holy Week and Easter! During the anticipated three months of construction, we will have daily Mass in the adoration chapel and convert the back half (hall) of the main church into the weekend worship space, along with outdoor overflow as needed. These arrangements will allow us to keep our program offerings as well have sufficient space for daily and weekend Masses.
I want to thank you all for your ongoing prayers and support. I continue to be overwhelmed by the community’s excitement for this project and I intend to start providing monthly updates in the bulletin and/or Friday Flocknote videos. Make sure you subscribe to “St. Mary Magdalene Gilbert” on YouTube and our Friday Flocknotes (text smarymag to the number 84576) so that you don’t miss the updates.
Delays are never easy, but this is a opportunity for us to turn to the Lord, practicing perseverance and trust during what can be an arduous process toward something beautiful. We continue to pray and work so that this renovation phase (and those that come in the future) may progress day by day to successful completion, for the glory of the Risen Lord!
God bless, Fr. Chris