With Bishop Salvatore R. Matano on hand for the festivities, Ithaca’s St. Catherine of Siena Parish broke ground June 11 on its long-awaited parish center.
Immediately after officiating the 5 p.m. Mass, Bishop Matano joined Father Joseph Marcoux, pastor, in presiding over the groundbreaking ceremony. A reception followed in the current parish center that is being replaced after more than 50 years of hosting parish activities.
St. Catherine received diocesan approval this past winter to move forward with the construction project, which had been in the planning and fundraising stages for several years. Parish officials had sought a new facility that would offer more space for the St. Catherine community, which has grown in recent years in terms of Mass attendance, collection income, participation in religious-education programs and adding various ministries.
"We are entering into a very exciting time for our community. All the hard work and discussions and hours and hours of meetings are about to bear fruit," Father Marcoux wrote in a March 7 parish bulletin article announcing that diocesan approval for the new parish center had been secured.