Friday, November 27, 2015

Carmelite Chapel and Choir Renovated in Loretto, PA

The Carmelite Monastery of Saint Thérèse in Loretto, Pennsylvania, in the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown, recently received beautiful renovations to their public chapel and nun’s choir. Among the renovations which were carried out under the patronage of Saint Joseph were a new altar, altar rail, and tabernacle. The monastery of Discalced Carmelite Nuns was founded in 1929 by Mother Marie Joseph from Bordeaux. Mr. Charles Schwab, the great steel magnate, provided many of the resources for it’s construction. Pauline, Mr. Schwab’s mother, had a great devotion to St. Thérèse and when Mother Marie Joseph, with her sense of humor, sent one of the community’s small statues of the Saint, via taxi to the Schwab’s estate with the note “I need a new home,” Pauline was completely captivated. Her son, Charles, soon oversaw the building of the new Carmel on land offered by the Franciscan T.O.R. Fathers. The Monastery in Lisieux served as inspiration during the building of the Loretto Monastery. Loretto was founded in 1799 by the Russian Prince, (Servant of God) Father Demetrius Augustine Gallitzin (1770-1840). (This description and the accompanying photographs were sent to us by Mr Jordan Hainsey, with our thanks!)

The chapel before the renovation...
...and after. 
The nuns’ choir before renovation... 
...and after.
Close-up of the newly installed tabernacle.

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