Cornerstone Campaign Surpasses $1 Million Goal
Jul 31, 2018
St. Sebastian Parish is thrilled to announce that it has raised over $1 million for “Cornerstone of Our Faith,” a capital campaign for the restoration of the church building. The funds will be used to restore the church from top to bottom, including refinishing 10,700 square feet of terrazzo floors, repairing and refinishing all 113 pews and kneelers, installing new doors, redesigning the main entrance for greater accessibility, cleaning and restoration of the massive altar mosaic, upgrading the sound system, and installing energy-efficient lighting. In addition, the entire exterior of the building will be cleaned, and all the shrines, brass work, wood work and marble will be repaired and restored.
Fr. Valencheck, the pastor of St. Sebastian Parish, notes that early parishioners inhabited several buildings before the current church was completed in 1960. “But after more than 60 years of loving use,” says Valencheck, “the church was starting to show its wear and tear – it was time to restore it to its full grandeur and beauty.”
So, with the help of the St. Sebastian Parish Foundation, the parish launched the $1 million “Cornerstone of Our Faith” campaign in May of 2017, with an eye on having the work completed before the parish holds its 90th anniversary gala celebration November 10, 2018.
One year later, at masses the weekend of May 13, Kathy Holaday, director of development for the St. Sebastian Parish Foundation, joined Fr. Valencheck in announcing that the parish had met the goal. “We are so very pleased by the support we have received from our community, says Holaday, “It has truly been a team effort, with gifts ranging in size from 10 cents to $100,000,” says Holaday. “Parishioners of all ages, from the school children who held a “Light of Our Faith” coin collection drive to the overflowing crowd at the spaghetti dinner benefit, the generosity and spirit of our community is awe-inspiring.”
The restoration work is scheduled to be competed in July. While work is underway, the parish is still celebrating all weekend Masses in the church using rented chairs. Updates on the progress of the restoration work can be found on the parish Facebook page at Facebook.com/saintsebastianakron, where pictures are posted frequently.