Please join us for the blessing of the construction of the new sacristy addition on the occasion of the groundbreaking on Monday, October 3rd at 8:30 am.
A Long-Awaited Project
After two years of preparation, fundraising, and a long City Permit process delayed by the COVID-19 pandemic, we finally received the authorization to start our construction.
M. Dean Shoemaker, the builder proposed to break the ground on October 3rd. It is the feast day of St. Therese of the Child Jesus. We cannot but acknowledge the providential timing, as St. Therese is the patron Saint of sacristans.
After the usual 7:30 am Mass, the ceremony of the solemn blessing of the works and groundbreaking will take place on the spot at 8:30 am. St. Thomas More priests and St. Thomas More Academy students will assist to the ceremony. You are all invited to join us in gratitude.
Shoemaker Construction Company, Inc. will build this long-awaited extension.
Watch the video animation of the project >
(Notice the cost in this video is quite outdated; with time, everything went up!)
Toward a Bigger Church
The construction of these four chapels is a preparatory step in our plan to build our school and expand our church, in order to better answer the needs of our growing community.
Phase #1: construction of an all-grade-inclusive cloister-style, single-story building that houses all classrooms for K-8 lower school and the 9-12 girls high school. Estimated cost: $2.5 - 3.5M.
Phase #2: addition of the school's administrative support wing including computer and science labs, a library, and more storage.
Phase #3: construction of a separate social hall, commercial laundry and kitchen, new bathroom facilities, bookstore, priests and priory staff offices, priory support facilities, and more storage.
Phase #4: expansion of the nave of the church by removing the interior walls of the church building. The stairs to the choir loft will be relocated to a covered exterior portion of the church to free up much-needed space. The two confessionals will be relocated to the far back of the church, and a full baptistery will be added. The capacity will nearly double.
The photograph was taken by Celine with her sisters and her cousin, in the sacristy courtyard. The scene shows the work of the sacristan and the making of hosts. In the same month of November 1896, Therese wrote a poem called “The Sacristans of Carmel,” in rhyming octosyllabic verse.
The poem was written for Sr. Marie Philomena, who had asked Thérèse for something she could sing while baking. Later, all of the sacristans and altar bread bakers got to know the poem, and sang it regularly in their work, to whatever familiar tune they chose that would match the meter.
1. Here below our sweet office
Is to prepare for the altar
The bread and wine of the Sacrifice
Which brings to earth—“Heaven”!
2. Heaven, O supreme mystery!
Hides itself under humble bread,
For Heaven, it is Jesus Himself,
Coming to us each morning.
3. There are no queens on earth
Who are happier than we.
Our office is a prayer
Which unites us to our Spouse.
4. This greatest honor of this world
To the peace, profound and heavenly,
Which Jesus lets us savor.
5. We bring a holy envy
For the work of our hands,
For the little white host
Which is to veil our divine Lamb.
6. But his love has chosen us.
He is our Spouse, our Friend.
We are also hosts
Which Jesus wants to change into Himself.
7. Sublime mission of the Priest,
You become our mission here below.
Transformed by the Divine Master,
It is He who guides our steps.
8. We must help the apostles
By our prayers, our love.
Their battlefields are ours.
For them we fight each day.
9. The hidden God of the tabernacle
Who also hides in our hearts,
Oh what a miracle! at our voice
Deigns to pardon sinners!
10. Our happiness and our glory
Is to work for Jesus.
His beautiful Heaven is the ciborium
We want to fill with souls!...
Kinney, Poetry (pp. 170–71), slightly modified to make it more literal.