Special Tour of the Immaculata for the SMAC Faculty

Source: St. Mary's Priory

In gratitude for the work and dedication of SMAC employees, Rector Fr. Rutledge and Facilities Manager Bill Drew offered 90-minute guided tours of the new Immaculata this past weekend and the next, unique opportunities for faculty and staff members to learn about the religious, artistic, and technical aspects of the project and to appreciate its grandeur from inside the nearly completed exterior walls.  On Saturday approximately 60 people walked through the building with Fr. Rutledge who started each tour in the open foyer, proceeded through the vestibule and then the seating area all the way up to the sanctuary.  He explained along the way details regarding the religious significance of the design and art associated with the baptistry and the many side altars, including one in honor of St. Joseph, another for Our Lady of Guadalupe, as well as the Regina Martyrum Chapel, a new home for Our Lady of Sorrows and the reliquary of Assumption Chapel.   Fr. Rutledge described the original artwork that will depict the seven sacraments in the coffered ceiling and in the transepts as well as the images from Apocalypse, that of Our Lady which will adorn the cupola, and that of Our Lord, the Lamb, behind the altar.  Outside he talked about the marble statues that are being made for the exterior, including St. Ignatius of Loyola, Bishop Miege, St. Pius X, and Archbishop Lefebvre beneath Christ the King on the front, as well as St. Cyril and St. Louis de Montfort on either side of the building beneath the statue of Our Lady on the very top of the church.   Participants enjoyed spectacular views from the choir loft and bell towers and marveled at the spaciousness throughout, including the interior seating area for 1500, the basement conference room, and the sanctuary and its two adjacent side chapels, one on the south side in honor of St. Pius the X and one on the north side in honor of the Sacred Heart Chapel with its own tabernacle for the altar of repose during Holy Week.  Four more tour opportunities for SMAC employees will be offered this weekend, two on Saturday, October 16, and two more on Sunday, October 17.