Roseau, Dominica – March 24th, 2021 – The official launch of the renovation of the St. Patrick Catholic Church took place at a Press Conference on Wednesday 17 March 2021 at the Sacred space in Grand Bay under the theme “Rebuilding Church, Reigniting Faith”. Wednesday 17 March was suitable since it was also the Feast of St. Patrick.
The launch was initiated by the recently appointed Public Relations Committee tasked with the responsibility of implementing strategies that will assist the community in raising much-needed funds for the renovation.
Assistant Diocesan Engineer, Tariq Rolle detailed that the Church will be completed in approximately two years and the cost of the renovation is approximately five million East Caribbean dollars.
Work will be done in a total of eight phases. Phase one, demolition, excavation filling, and substructure works of the Church to be implemented in five months at a cost of $635,000.00.
Phase two, raising of the floor slab, to be implemented in one month, at a cost of $53,000.00. Phase three, wall repair and capping, will cost $288,000.00, duration five months. Phase four which is the roof construction will be implemented within three months at a cost of $748,000.00.
Phase five which is the installation of doors and windows (openings) will cost $250,000.00 at a duration of two months.
Phase six which is the installation of ceiling and services will cost $630,000.00, a duration of six months. Phase seven, external works and painting, will cost $550,000.00. Phase eight inclusive of furnishing and floor treatment, two months $381,000.00. The church will be thoroughly enhanced using new business technologies. Attendees and viewers were intrigued by the unveiling of the new church model by architect, Davidson Julien.
The St. Patrick Catholic Church was ravaged by Hurricane Maria in 2017. However, the community of Grand Bay and parishioners have shown strength in faith.
The parish priest, Reverend Father Brancker John explained, “from 2017 the Church has been housed in a garage which we now refer to as our sacred space. Do not be mistaken, that sacred space has housed a vibrant and growing church and we have been able to grow closer to the Lord and become more attuned to his word in this space.”
He further indicated that while the current setting is more intimate, in many ways the community has outgrown the sacred space and that it is time to rebuild the church.
Miss Marva Williams, chairperson of the Public Relations Committee indicated that fundraising initiatives will be implemented to reflect self-sustainability.
Additionally, the committee seeks to enhance the internal communication focus of the church community, to raise external awareness, and to increase engagement with existing and prospective members. She further explained that the parish will also use the renovation process to prepare for the celebration of the Church’s 100th birthday in 2024.
The committee intends to strengthen its social media presence through the establishment of a Facebook page and anticipate formulation of a YouTube channel for viewing of Sunday Mass.
Other attendees at the press conference included Bishop Gabriel Malzaire and Honorable Edward Registe, Parliamentary Representative of the Grand Bay Constituency.
The parish has already raised approximately $419,000.00 towards the fundraising efforts to rehabilitate the church. Please follow us on Facebook at Grand Bay Roman Catholic – St. Patrick’s Parish Church for more information on upcoming activities and how you can donate.