St. Joseph Catholic Church has been a place of worship for Yuba-Sutter residents since it was built 165 years ago. In recent weeks, it’s doubled as a construction site.

For the next several months, St. Joseph Catholic Church will be undergoing renovations both to the interior and exterior of the building in Marysville. The most noticeable change will be a new steeple, as the current structure is starting to lean and will eventually pose a safety risk if not corrected. The renovation project is expected to cost approximately $1.8 million total.

“The main reason for this project is because of safety issues, and of course we would like to pass an improved facility to our younger generation,” said Rev. Michal Olszewski. “This place is very important for us because it is where we get together as a catholic community to worship.”

As part of the renovations, the church is planning structural, safety and cosmetic upgrades. The steeple will be replaced, new lights will be put up outside and a new roof will be built on the church and gym. New fire alarms will be installed and the facility’s doors will be restored. The interior and exterior of the building will also be painted, and the stained-glass windows will be refurbished.

Olszewski said construction crews are in the beginning phases of the project. Part of the interior painting has already been completed. Scaffolding has been put up around the outside of the building as crews prepare to scrape and paint the exterior. The church’s stained-glass windows have also been removed and shipped to a company in Iowa to restore them.

The next step, he said, will be replacing the roof and deconstructing the current steeple. He said the new steeple will be shipped after that and will likely take about six weeks to arrive. Jackson Construction out of Sacramento is in charge of the renovations.

The work is expected to be completed by the end of October. The church plans to continue operations as usual throughout construction, though COVID-19 has required them to make modifications.

The church has about 1,700 parishioners that regularly attend services. Church members have collected $1 million over the years to help with the project. Earlier this year, parish leaders set out on a plan to raise the remaining $800,000 funds needed for the project.

Olszewski said they have raised about 60 percent of that goal so far, or nearly $500,000.

“The campaign goes on. We will be reaching out to our parishioners at the end of the week or beginning next week through phone calls to try and raise more donations,” Olszewski said.

Community members interested in donating are encouraged to contact the church’s business manager, Dale Walker, at 742-6461, or go to https://bit.ly/2VgFKxz. The St. Joseph Catholic Church is located at 702 C St., Marysville.

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