St. Rita’s Catholic Church is on the final leg of its long journey from ashes to a new place of worship. The construction fence has come down, inspections are taking place, new pews have been installed and the process of handing over the building from builders to congregation has begun.
Last Wednesday, a team started to move items into the new church, including the altar, lectern, font, linens and candles the church is currently using, which will remain in service until new ones can be acquired. The goal is to have a new altar and furnishings built specifically for the church by this summer.
The church will hold an open house today from 6 to 8 p.m. and Saturday from 1 to 3 p.m. where parishioners are welcome to come and explore the new building.
On Friday, there will be a lobster dinner fundraiser from 4 to 6 p.m. The proceeds will go towards the building of the altar. Those attending the meal will also have the opportunity to see inside the church.
The first weekend Masses in the new building will be held Saturday, at 5 p.m. and Sunday, at 9 a.m. and will also mark the Feast of Pentecost. Father David John had set a goal of having the first service in the new building for the Feast of Pentecost because he felt the symbolism was fitting.
“It is the feast of the coming of the Holy Spirit,” he said. “It is saying we have our new church and we are hoping that it is not just a building, but it will be a place where God resides and where people can come and meet God in some way.”
An official opening will be held Wednesday, Sept. 30, at which time the Bishop will be present to bless the church and to celebrate two Masses the following weekend.
The new church takes the place of the old one on the same site, which an arsonist destroyed in March 2013.