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ST. THERESE CHURCH STEADY GROWTH FROM HUMBLE BEGINNINGS

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L-R, Martin Inc. foreman (hidden in red shirt) Bryan Kerner, steel workers Kile Krick, John Felone, Bob Starkey, Steve Churchward, (Steve is a second generation steel worker and the great grandson of Charles Churchward who started the first Blacksmith Shop in Waynedale), and crane operator Ned Bynum. St. Therese began as 'St. Therese Church of the Little Flower'. It was an army-style chapel that was purchased in 1947 and moved from Baer Field Airport to Lower Huntington Road. The Army Chapel caught fire in 1950, and again in 1970. After the second fire, the church was redesigned into the present school/church combination. St. Therese's congregation has outgrown the old structure and a new church has been in the planning stages for four years. A pledge drive was held in November of 2000 and the ground breaking for the new church occurred on March 3, 2002.

The new church is now being erected just southwest of the old church and school. The master building plan for the $3.35 million project calls for the new church that will seat 600 parishioners and remodeling of the school.

On Monday, July 15, 2002 wooden trusses from Western Archrib of Manitoba Canada were put in place. The trusses will serve to both beautify and support the new church.

According to Bill Kinder of Michael Kinder and Sons, the St.Therese project is 1/3rd of the way complete and a little ahead of the projected Palm Sunday 2003 completion date. Bill is the fourth generation of Kinder's from the Michael Kinder Construction Co. that has served Ft. Wayne since 1892. Other sub-contractors on the job site include Wayne Asphalt and Martin Inc.

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