Father Brad Schoeberle says weekday Masses in a trailer on the construction site of St. Luke University Parish at Grand Valley State University, but he knows the situation is temporary as his beautiful new church is taking shape before his eyes daily.
Titan Interiors’ construction team of about 20 people and other contractors are doing their part to make sure the project stays on schedule so Father Brad will be able to say weekday Mass come February at the 13,000-square-foot church being built at 10144 42nd Ave., is just south of the GVSU water tower.
The Paulist pastor of the parish started saying weekday Masses in the trailer starting on November 28, but he will be holding all Sunday and Christmas season services in the Cook-DeWitt Center Auditorium on the university campus until the church is ready for occupancy. He looks forward to worshipping in a serene environment that will feature ample interior spaces with wood slot ceilings and acoustical panels to deaden sound.
That work is being done by Titan Interiors technicians who know tricks of the trade to handle drywall and interior finishings during the cold winter months. For instance, technicians make sure temperature and humidity levels are controlled closely so the construction materials are dimensionally stable and drywall mud dries at the correct rate, said Project Superintendent Tom VanderMeulen.
By ignoring those fine construction details, a job that looks perfect now may require patch-up work in spring. See our blog Watch Your Mud in the Michigan Winter.
VanderMeulen said Titan Interiors keeps air circulating properly throughout the building with large, commercial grade fans and keeps temperatures constant with a portable furnace. It took about a week for the building to attain the right temperature for the interior work, and construction materials such as drywall need about a day to stabilize to the temperature and humidity.
That all adds up to a top notch job on the $9 million building that will be serve as the focal point of spiritual life for the some 270 households who are members of the St. Luke parish, not including students of GVSU who will worship there. The ministry of the Paulist Fathers and the Roman Catholic Diocese of Grand Rapids launched the project in March.
Rudy Kadiric, president of Titan Interiors, said his company is proud to be part of the St. Luke project, as well as the new education center for St. Mary’s Parish in Spring Lake.