Donate a paver brick in Holy Cross Prayer Garden in memory of a deceased loved one, in esteem of someone living, in thanksgiving for favors and graces received or in prayer for present and future parishioners, family and friends.
The prayer garden pavers will line the path to the Shrine to the Blessed Virgin Mary on the southwest corner of the garden. The statue is a hand carved, 6 foot high statue of Italian marble being crafted in Italy by experienced artisans. Thanks to the generosity of donors, the prayer garden will not only include beautiful plantings and the Marian statue, but a custom-designed garden fountain, and a specially comissioned sculpture of "Jesus Calming the Storms."
Upon request, a certificate note card acknowledging the gift will be sent to the donor, in case they wish to send it in time for Christmas giving. Certificates can be personalized and mailed if purchased before December 17th and available for in-person pick up in the parish office between December 17th and December 22nd.
Pavers can be ordered online or by completing a form available at our masses or in the Parish Office. Click on the garden path in the blog's sidebar.
Thank you for being part of our parish project and helping complete this beautiful space.
Here are some photos of the preliminary work for our life-sized bronze statue of Jesus in the new church's prayer garden. The statue will be mounted on a marble pedestal facing the river and the ocean and will be illuminated at night.
Each of our 3rd graders drew something they were thankful for and the images were projected while each in turn expressed thanks. They did such a creative and interesting job with their drawings and did so well reading their prayers, I thought you might like to see the drawings of gratitude.
Perhaps not the most exciting, but surely necessary parts of the building. Actually, the ceiling of the church will be quite exciting and interesting and it looks as though preparations are nearly ready in the north transept and the nave for workers to hang the barrel vault ceiling frames.
Many crews of workers have been on the construction site over the last several weeks. More drains and underground conduits were installed. The shingling of the building continues. On the south side it's great to see how the recessed arches around the windows look now that they are shingled.
Most of the progress on the inside of the building has been in the ceiling and the basement: finishing the insulation and sprinkler system so that the barrel vault ceilings and dome can be installed, and tiling the downstairs rest rooms.
The door openings have been closed off with heavy duty plastic and there is some portable heat in the basement to help the tile cement dry. The electricity has been switched on and the gas is next to come.
A timely generous donation has enabled us to upgrade all the floor tiles in the upper church to ceramic and stone.
Today is the feast day of Elizabeth of Hungary whose stained glass window from St. Francis Church in Philadelphia we have restored. The PTA graciously donated the window to Holy Cross from the school children.
At today's mass, we learned about her great concern for the poor, especially children and her affection and devotion to St. Francis of Assisi. Her spirit of generosity and simple lifestyle, despite her royal heritage, can be an inspiration for us all. The children will be given a laminated prayer card of our window with a prayer to her on the reverse side.
Our thanksgiving food drive is a great opportunity for us to emulate St. Elizabeth's efforts to feed the hungry.
Holy Cross' window depicts St. Elizabeth wearing the crown of royalty, with two children looking to her protection. Her cloak is filled with roses which appeared miraculously when jealous advisors to her husband, the king, accused her of stealing treasure from the palace. Instead of simply food, roses appeared marking God's approval of her efforts to help the poor.
Much work can be accomplished inside the church now, even if the weather is inclement. Workers were busy today:
Many thanks to Jim Kennedy's mother and his family for their donation of a truck to the church with which we can keep the parking lot and driveways cleared of snow this winter. Hopefully we won't have to call on it much, but now we are prepared.
There has been a lot of activity on the northwest side of the church not visible to most. The underground electric cables and the air conditioning lines are being installed. The new transformer for the church is humming with electric power. Electric power to the rectory will be routed through the church, as per JCP&L; that switchover will occur soon.
Meantime, the shinglers have expedited their work and have been here with two crews on Saturdays in an effort to complete the job before the weather turns really cold. Priority inside the church has been to complete the ceiling insulation and sprinkler system. Discussions between building inspector, contractor and architect resulted in several weeks of delay until it was clear how the job had to be modified to comply with the inspectors new instructions that the attic be fully sprinkled. As you know, all modifications cost time and money.
Once the sprinklers and insulations have been fully installed, the dome and the vault ceiling arches can be hung. Hopefully the construction crews will ready the space so that the contractors who are supplying our liturgical needs (the altar, the pew, the stained glass windows, etc.) can begin work as soon as possible.
Bishop O'Connell will dedicate our new church on Laetare Sunday, the 4th Sunday in Lent. Pray that we complete our project in God's good time.
The new estimate is early Spring, which should leave plenty of time for the celebration of our sacraments in the church. What parts of Lent and/or Holy Week, and whether or not we will celebrate Easter in the new church depend on the exact date the church is celebration-ready and when it can be dedicated. Rather than fixing another date now, we promise to set one as soon as it seems practicable.
Meantime, keep praying and thank you for your patience!