Pastor's Message

July 16, 2017

OLG Easter Collection Reached $55,811.50, Highest Ever
I am happy to announce that our Easter collection is the largest in years at $55,811.50.  This is higher than last year’s $52,560. Thank you for your generous support.  While we have several large donations, we would have gone over goal even without them.  This amount enables us to complete the work we are doing to restore Our Lady of Grace.  And this is a good time to update you on the last phase of the project.  By the end of this month, we will finish the sanctuary and nave of the church.  The extensive plaster damage extended the work to take 32 months and almost double the cost to nearly $400,000.  But the results are stunning.  It now looks clean and neat.  While Alexi Sumberac and his assistant Elliott have done all the work, they have also been replacing our light bulbs and cleaning the stained glass windows and tapestries and paintings.
They will start right away to address the special projects that were not included in the main contract.  They will start in the choir loft left, then center, then the choir room to the right and the staircase that leads to it.  Then they will do the two side chapels at the entrance and the area under the choir loft.  They will also refinish and paint all the interior doors.  The Holy Family shrine and the shrine next to the Blessed Mother altar will be done along with touching up the Stations of the Cross.  These projects will cost about $56,000 and be done by November, just in time for the holidays.  They will then spend two weeks giving the church a general cleaning.  We will certainly give thanks this Thanksgiving.
While St. Joseph’s collection is much smaller, $2,341.39 we are using general funds to make necessary repairs.  The Fire Department recently inspected the church and we engaged our excellent electrician, Frank Vena, to correct all the violations in the church.  Frank installed a new ceiling light fixture in the vestibule.  We also installed new outlets to cut down on extension cords.  This work cost us about $4,000.  We bought two new fans for the nave.  Gustavo and Guido, our facilities men, cleaned the light fixtures and replaced the bulbs.   Finally, the City required us to update our fire extinguishers, which we did in all eight buildings at both sites for a cost of over $2,000.
Finally, the tree behind the rectory was diseased and a branch fell into a neighbor’s yard.  To remove it and grind the stump cost about $2,200.  We are moving along to refresh and refurbish our historic buildings because of your generosity.  I give thanks to God in prayer for your support and love for our Church and parish.
Fr. Alex Santora

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