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By Terry Dean
The staff of Ascension Catholic Church has relocated their offices from the Parish Center into the parish school this summer while their headquarters undergoes renovations.
The Parish Center at East Avenue and Van Buren, which houses offices for the pastor and support staff, is being renovated. The 83-year-old building, originally the parish's convent, will receive new wiring, air-conditioning and asbestos removal. The parish staff meanwhile has moved their offices inside Ascension School, located next door to the church, 808 S. East Ave., and just across the street from the center.
A kindergarten classroom will serve as a makeshift office for church pastor, Rev. Larry McNally, and his administrative staff. Other church staff will have be spread out to other classrooms in the school. The renovations are expected to wrap up by August. The parish and school are planning a larger capital campaign for the near future, said Mary Jo Burns, Ascension's principal.
The congregation has undertaken several campaigns in the last 20 years for the church and school, said Burns.
"We knew we'd have to plan but then we thought, let's do a little more work so we're clear in what we want to do, and that we're transparent," Burns said of this latest effort. "When you're asking people to contribute you want to make sure you're very transparent to what you're asking for and what your needs are."
The last capital campaign undertaken for the school and church was about 15 years ago.
"It was one of several we've done because it's an old school. We're over 80 years old. The church is 100 years old. It's something we know we'll need to keep doing," Burns said.