Lansing parish launches campaign - Catholic Courier

Lansing parish launches campaign

Folding chairs are often employed to accommodate the 9:45 a.m. Sunday Mass crowd at All Saints Church. Take the parish’s 5:30 p.m. Saturday liturgy away -a move that the Tompkins Planning Group foresees by June 2005 – and All Saints will face an even greater space crunch for its one remaining weekend Mass.

Thus, the Lansing parish announced in late March a $600,000 capital campaign for a new church building. The proposed structure would double the current church’s seating capacity of approximately 200. Already the campaign has garnered approximately $200,000 in pledges by parishioners, according to David Lippert, All Saints’ administrative assistant.

“They know that this is a need. When you come here on a Sunday morning and you have to get in with a shoehorn, it doesn’t take much more to get the point across,” said Lippert, who oversees many of the parish’s day-to-day operations due to the lack of an on-site administrator.

Estimated overall cost for the project is $800,000. Lippert said that in addition to the capital campaign, approximately $200,000 will be derived from savings and a long-term loan.

The capital campaign is taking place concurrently with the Diocese of Rochester’s Partners in Faith capital campaign. Lippert said an arrangement has been struck with diocesan officials by which All Saints will fulfill its predetermined $65,000 commitment toward Partners in Faith – to be paid over a five-year period – while also conducting the new church campaign.

Lippert said groundbreaking for the church – to be situated on All Saints’ parish property on Route 34B – will hopefully begin by the end of this year. The project would also include additional classroom and gathering space. All Saints’ existing church is being projected as a potential chapel and classroom/office facility.

These plans reflect an energetic community, even though All Saints operated as a mission parish for most of its history in northern Tompkins County. Masses were first held in this area in 1910, with the first church going up in 1913 and the current church opening in 1933. Steady growth in recent years has seen a move away from the parish’s “mission” status and the building of a new parish center in 1995.

Lippert said active participation comes from nearly 90 percent of the parish’s 200 registered families. As examples of this vibrancy, Lippert cited the well-attended coffee hours following Sunday Mass; participation by 100 children in the parish’s religious-education program; and an annual teen mission trip to Guatemala.

All Saints’ priest administrator is Father Scott Kubinski, who additionally serves as part-time chaplain at Ithaca College. Father Kubinski will also become temporary administrator in late June at St. Anthony in Groton and Holy Cross in Dryden. Diocesan officials plan to appoint a parochial vicar to assist Father Kubinski in his newly expanded duties.

Though thin on Catholic clergy, Tompkins County is one of the fastest growing population areas in the state, Lippert noted.

“It’s partly due to the stability with the academic institutions, and the location – this is a nice place to live,” he explained. “It’s also a heavily service-oriented economy, which means it doesn’t fluctuate a lot. And, much of the agricultural land that is going out of production is being shifted over to residential.”

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