St. Francis de Sales Church Ad Hoc Sanctuary Committee

September 20, 2017


  • The committee met at 6:30 p.m. in the Rectory and opened with prayer
  • Those present: Ann Conte, Marcia Evans, Annette and Skip Jennings, Fran Klaus, Dr. Jesse Loot, Emily Meadows, Margie Owens, Rusty Rappold, John Sadowski, and Father Paul Wharton. Absent: Deacon Harry Evans and Michael Farris.  Guest: Mr. David Gardiner, Gardiner and Hall Associates
  • The minutes were corrected to reflect the correct spelling of Marcia Evans’ first name and to include Rusty Rappold as being present.
  • The committee members introduced themselves to Mr. Gardiner
  • Gardiner gave a brief background of his work experience. For the last 20 years, he has worked almost exclusively with Church design, both new construction and renovation of existing facilities.  He worked with Father Paul on  renovations at Sacred Heart Bluefield, Sacred Heart Princeton, and St. Leo Inwood.
  • Gardiner described the process used to develop a renovation plan – selections of materials by the committee, drafts of possible designs by Mr. Gardiner, presentation boards to the parish community. Any changes beyond the flooring will need approval from the Diocese.
  • Gardiner shared examples of previous projects and showed the committee how he ties the renovations into existing designs to meet liturgical guidelines.
  • Father Paul discussed with the committee how the redesign must follow the Liturgical Principles for building and renovating, particularly 5 principles outlined in Liturgical Principles for Building or Renovating Churches from Build of Living Stones: Art, Architecture, and Worship by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (November 16, 2000).
  • Father Paul reviewed the steps already taken in the process: all parishioners have been emailed, there was an insert in the bulletin, existing church plans were submitted to GHA, a contract has been executed with GHA, carpet bids have been received, and the Church has paid the bill for the HVAC duck work from the General Fund (this amount will be reimbursed through insurance).
  • Fran Klaus shared with the committee an idea for displaying the portraits of previous pastors – get 5×7 reprints of the available photos and collage them by “pastors of the old church building” and “pastors of the new church building.”
  • Gardiner shared samples of various flooring options: Luxury Vinyl Tile (LVT) which he suggests as a good option for under the pews, lasts about 50-75 years and costs approximately $12/ sq. ft. installed; porcelain tile which is stronger than marble or granite, can be engineered with skid resistance, lasts about 150 years and costs about $35/sq. yd. for the product only (installation costs are dependent upon the contractor); and carpeting which costs about $6/sq. ft. installed. Designs can be incorporated with all these products; some are stain resistant and some can be sealed.  He stressed that these are just “guesstimates” of actual costs, but give the committee some idea.
  • Gardiner will work up estimates with various floor products to have available at the next committee meeting. He will also have available options for a renovated layout, Ambo, Baptismal Font, and other furnishings.
  • It was requested that the distance between pews on the “old side” be reviewed, as some parishioners have complained that their feet hit the kneeler in the pew behind them.
  • Father Paul suggested a permanent Baptismal Font be considered. He also reported that the Ambo and Altar are supposed to complement each other.
  • Gardiner shared designs of Coats of Arm of St. Francis de Sales which could be possibly used as a floor medallion.
  • Father Paul indicated that he would like to have the carpet under the pews replaced as soon as possible and the renovations to the Sanctuary can follow later.
  • The committee did a walk-through of the church and discussed with Mr. Gardiner pros and cons of existing furnishings and materials.
  • The next meeting is Monday, October 23 at 6:30 pm. David Gardiner will be present at that time.