Parishioners of the Church of Saint Mary of the Isle were filled with joy as they celebrated Mass on the Feast of the Assumption August 15 in their newly renovated church which had been closed since October 29 due to extensive damage caused by Superstorm Sandy.
Bishop Robert Brennan, the former pastor of St. Mary’s, blessed the restored church at the 7 p.m. Mass. He also formally installed Father Brian Barr as St. Mary’s pastor. Father Barr had arrived at St. Mary’s just weeks before the storm devastated the City of Long Beach, causing major damage to the church and parish hall.
The parish hall was almost immediately set up as a relief collection and distribution center and served as a place for hot meals in the aftermath of the storm and has been the parish’s worship space for the past ten months.
Repairs to the church were made with more resilient materials, with new finishes and improved lighting. The interior was remodeled to look more like the church did prior to renovations in the 1970s.
For a slideshow from the Feast of the Assumption Mass, see below.
All photos by Gregory A. Shemitz.