Bishop dedicates new buildings to St. Teresa of Avila Catholic Church

Columbia County might be closer to having its first Catholic school.

The Bishop of the Diocese of Savannah visited St. Teresa of Avila Catholic Church in Grovetown on Sunday to bless and dedicate the new parish activity center and a wing that doubles the size of the church’s education center .

“These buildings are made of stone and brick, plaster and mortar, but what happens there is really what matters most,” Bishop Stephen D. Parkes said in a post-ceremony ceremony. church mass at 9 a.m.

The 37,000 square foot activity center includes a basketball court; meeting rooms for middle and high school students; a multipurpose room for group exercises; and an indoor walking track.

The education center added 12 classrooms for a total of 24, which were built to Georgia Ministry of Education design and construction standards in anticipation of the possible opening of a Catholic elementary school. .

Reverend Thomas Peyton, a former pastor of St. Teresa of Avila Catholic Church who helped lay the groundwork for the parish building program, uses an aspergillum to bless with holy water one of the halls of Newly built class of Grovetown Church.

“No, we don’t know what these walls are going to contain – I think we all have a pretty good idea,” Parkes said. “We pray that everything that is happening here will be very successful, that it will be supported and that the Holy Spirit will inspire us to always do the right thing in education, in regard to the gift of education. Catholic, let it be His will, and we commit it to His hands.

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The completed activity center and new education wing mark the completion of the church’s three-phase construction plan for the site. The parish inaugurated in March 2004 its center of life and its education building, which were completed in 2005. The second phase, a new shrine, began construction in August 2013 and was completed at the end of 2014 .

Bishop Stephen D. Parkes of the Diocese of Savannah speaks to parishioners in the new educational wing of St. Teresa of Avila Catholic Church in Grovetown on Sunday.

The bishop also dedicated the church columbarium, a sacred space in which cremated remains can be buried.

Columbia County, particularly the part around Grovetown, “is growing so rapidly that we see the need to eventually offer another Catholic school option,” said Jerry Baine, a parishioner of St. Teresa and its leader. construction project, to The Augusta Chronicle in August 2020.

The parish has grown from 1,400 families in 2005 to more than 2,000 today.

The parish moved to its current campus at 4921 Columbia Road in 2005, three years after the diocese purchased the 44.47-acre property. A driving range and a nine-hole golf course formerly operated on the site.

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