Mass celebrates grand church’s reopening

Saturday, St. Joseph Catholic Church celebrated the nearing completion of a multi-year, multimillion-dollar renovation hosting a Mass and dedication of the altar.

The church was nearly full as Bishop Joseph Siegel led the congregation through the special ceremony, blessing the church and anointing the altar before holding communion.

Plans for the renovation began in 2014. And in 2018, phase one of the renovation project began when the stained glass windows were removed, repaired and restored.

We outlined the work in the linked story last March.

Then, in 2021, phase two of the project began in May when crews began working on the exterior of the building.

Phase three of the project included the renovations of the interior. They began in August when the church was closed for public use, and services were moved to the parish building as the major restoration work began on inside.

Here is a story about the closure.

Here are some slides of the interior work which depict the extent of the work required. All photos were provided by the Our Time Committee and were taken by Greg Hoffman during the work. Many are on display in the parish.

Mass of Renovation and Dedication of Altar

Here are photos of Saturday’s Mass of Renovation and Dedication of Altar at St. Joseph Catholic Church. The following photos were captured by Matthew Crane.

Members of the local Knights of Columbus Fourth Degree Honor Guard formed up at the entrance to the nave in front of the new communal area.
Bishop Joseph Siegel sprinkled Holy Water around and over the church as part of the Mass.
Alex Rodriguez, a member of the Knights of Columbus Honor Guard, waited in formation for the entrance of the bishop and clergy to begin the Mass.
The Baptismal Font is the center point of the new entrance to the church. It is in line with the altar but separated from the nave by a windowed wall. The new entrance was created to establish a transition space from the outside into the church. It will also be used as a gathering area after services.
Nancy Teder indicated to the attendees when they were to join the song she was singing.
Bishop Siegel placed the relic into the altar during the Mass.
After sprinkling the water on the altar and the church, Bishop Siegel poured the chism (anointed oil) onto the altar. He poured it on the four corners and in the middle before spreading it across the surface with his hand. Afterward, incense is placed on the altar and burned.
From left: Lynn Scheu, Pam Howard, Lynn Bohnert and Rose Rasche prayed during the Mass held Saturday. The four ladies were charged with adding the altar clothes after it was anointed.
After the altar was anointed, cleaned and reestablished, Bishop Siegel led the clergy through the Liturgy of the Eucharist.
Honor Guard member Matthew Fleck received communion from Bishop Siegel.
The nave has been completely repainted by Conrad Schmitt Studios. The artists studied and utilized the architectural elements of the church to create a composition that highlights the beauty of the church.
Bishop Siegel and the clergy exited the church after the Mass. Parishioners were invited to the parish for a gathering afterward.
Left: Jim Hedinger and Greg Nordhoff discussed the updates to the interior prior to Mass. Hedinger explained that his great-grandfather purchased the stained glass window located over the balcony overlooking the choir area. The purchase was made in the late 1800s and Hedinger said it cost $500 at the time.