Our Lady of Lebanon Maronite Catholic Church in Center Wheeling once again features a steeple.
A replica of the church's original steeple was raised into place Monday. A crowd of parishioners sang and applauded as they viewed the installation from across the street from the Eoff Street church. The steeple was topped by a new golden cross.
Monsignor Bakhos Chidiac, the church's pastor, noted the steeple holds both aesthetic and emotional meaning.
Photo by Scott McCloskey
Crews from Walters Construction place a gold cross atop Our Lady of Lebanon Maronite Catholic Church in Center Wheeling Monday morning after the new steeple was put in place.
In terms of design, he believes the change will "bring the beauty of the church back to the way it was." As Our Lady of Lebanon's original steeple was removed in 1979 due to deterioration from two lightning strikes, the architecture had been without the feature for 34 years. Chidiac emphasized the update will restore the proportions of the building.
Nini Miller and Peggy Justice, church parishioners, added the project finalization is noteworthy. Justice described the new steeple as "wonderful," and Miller referred to it as "a dream that is now a reality."
Chidiac recognized the church's community effort in making the project possible.
"In this economy, for the elderly to collect money means a lot," Chidiac said. "It's amazing."
The project cost was $135,000, and the church did not have any debt associated with it.
Larry Siebieda, who also designed a 2008 addition to the church, was the architect. Construction was completed by Walters Construction.