In the Beginning...
June 8, 1938, ground was broken for Immaculate Conception Church. One year later, June 25, 1939 the church was completed, blessed and dedicated to service and worship of Almighty God.
The church exterior is of brick and stone construction. The brick, tangerine in color was manufactured in Alliance, Ohio. The stone is variegated Indiana limestone from Bloomington Indiana. The roof is copper, which in time with the weather, should become a beautiful shade of green. The roof construction is of solid wooden trusses and beams giving a medieval monastic effect. The architecture is a blend of French and Spanish Romanesque. Seating capacity is seven hundred. Within the church, arches and wide aisles feature the mode of style used. the stone arches are well proportioned, manifesting beauty and symmetry and strength.
The altars, seven in number, are of Indiana and Briar Hill stone construction, All altars follow the Romanesque style of architecture, and all are the so-styled table altars. The main altar, with the beautiful gold tabernacle and rich candelabra, we feel is especially beautiful. The side altars are dedicated to the Blessed Virgin Mary and St. Joseph. An unusual feature of the church, and most fitting since it bears the title of the Immaculate Conception, is the addition of four small shrines, all dedicated to some phase of the life of the Blessed Mother of God. The two shrines on the east side of church are dedicated to the Blessed Virgin Mary of Mother of Mercy and Our Lady of Lourdes.
On the west side, the shrines are dedicated to the Blessed Virgin Mary of Queen of Peace and Our Lady of Perpetual Help. Each shrine has a beautiful stature on the small altar indicating the title of the shrine. The confessionals of the church are found in each of these shrines. All statues are of extra rich decoration and were, for the most part, made too order by the Deprato Co., Chicago. The Stations of the Cross also are most becoming to the style of the church. The pictures are painted on copper plate, are imported from abroad. The frames were designed by the architect, Mr. Edward A. Ramsey, and made by the Josephine Church Furniture Co., who also made the pews, confessionals, kneeling benches, and vestment cases. We feel these Stations of the Cross are especially beautiful and devotional.
The windows in the church need only some attention and study to realize their beauty and merit. In the lower story one will find depicted the fifteen mysteries of the Rosary and in the clerestory the titles and symbols of the Litany of the Blessed Virgin Mary. In the sanctuary are beautiful designs of the Sacred Heart, the Immaculate Heart, Christ the King, Queen of Heaven, and the four Evangelists. Within the shrines are found beautifully blended tapestry windows. The rose windows, north and south are also of especially richness and beauty.
The pipe organ, three manual, rich in tone, was purchased from Geo. Kilgen & Sons. St Louis, Mo.
The light fixtures, also in harmony with the Romanesque architecture were purchased from the Craft-lite Co. of Columbus.
The altars were installed by the Church Goods Co., Columbus. The candlesticks, sanctuary lamp, gates for the communion rail were manufactured by the Messmer Co., Cincinnati. The rugs and drapes for the confessionals were furnished by the Echenrode Co. of Columbus. The decorating and painting of various symbols is the work of Mr. Gerhard Lamers, 721 E. Broad Street, Columbus. Consecration of the altars, June 23,1939: and solemn blessing and dedication of the church ten o'clock, Sunday, June 25, by the Most Rev. James J. Hartley, Bishop of Columbus.