How It Started. How It’s Going: Church in My Diocese Puts Steeple and Cross Back Up After 2020 Nashville Tornado
Last year in March, just before Coronavirus shut everything down in the nation and around the world, tornados ripped through Tennessee, in particular middle of the state. I was away at seminary when one came down in north Nashville, my home town, and devastated parts of the Germantown neighborhood where a church that I have attended along with my home parish, St. Mary’s, since 2016 got hit and received partial but significant damage.
The church hit was Catholic Church of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Yes. This was that Assumption Church that was on over the news last year. Over the years I have gone to and served many Masses, especially the old Latin Mass, here and been a part of the community and getting to know its fine people. So, I was shocked and saddened when I found out Assumption got hit and saw the pictures some of which are below.
Photos (Assumption Catholic Church Facebook page)
The side was badly damaged. Stained glass windows were blew out. The church was briefly lifted off its base.
And it particular the steeple was left damaged and tilted.
As you can see the church went through a dark night.
But soon dawn came in the morning!
Rebuilding has been taking place non-stop since the aftermath of the tornado. The church was cleared out and remains that way while Masses took place in two other parish buildings during the past year. Recently the church received her steeple back, repaired with cross in tow. This set the stage for this past Wednesday morning for a ceremony to take place with the bishop of Nashville, J. Mark Spalding, the pastor, Fr. Bede Price, the head of the local historical society, a local councilman, and others along with parishioners and other of the faithful in the diocese. I was so glad to be there. The steeple and its cross was blessed and raised back upon the church. Pictures from the ceremony and raising are all below:
And, no, we weren’t done yet!
It was wonderful to see the steeple and cross go back up. I believe the roof and structure have been repaired or mostly repaired at this point. The next major step is restoring the interior. I got a small look at some of the plans, and let me tell you, it’s gonna be the bomb, ya’ll.
I have multiple video clips from the event, from which some of the pics above come from, and will post it on my Facebook page and link it through my Twitter and the site.
Visit Catholic Church of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary’s website to learn more about the parish and consider donating toward the full restoration.