Historical Stories 1972 to 1974 - Church Groundbreaking and Dedication

Church_GroundbreakingThe celebration of Easter Mass was held at sunrise for the first time in 1972.  In May of the following year, Monsignor Hawkes wrote to Fr. Colloty confirming his approval of the new Church Furniture and Fitments:

  1. California Church Furniture Company - Pews in the sum of $26,180.00
  2. Ernest Shelton - Sculptor, Statuary in the sum of  $10,500.00
  3. Jos Maes Stained Glass - Stained glass in the sum of $17,810.00

Groundbreaking ceremonies for the new church building were held on August 20, 1972.  Participants were Pat Mullins, the current Parish Council President, Fr. Ronald Colloty, Fr. Tom Schneider, and Mr. Ed Flynn.

The dedication of the new church was held on February 26, 1974, the same day Monsignor Hawkes signed the official Notice of Completion, with a request to the architects that they please record the completion with the county recorder and provide him with a copy of the notice.

Fr_Alan_McCoyFr. Ronald’s announcement for the dedication was published in the Tidings on February 22, 1974, with the Heading “Cardinal to Dedicate New Beach Church,” and read, “The new Saints Simon & Jude Church will be dedicated by Cardinal Timothy Manning on Tuesday February the 26, at 5:30 p.m.  Pastors of surrounding parishes will celebrate the dedication Mass with the Cardinal.  Fr. Alan McCoy, OFM, Franciscan Provincial, will deliver the homily.”

Barker & Ott from Newport Beach were the Architects chosen to design the new Church.  The general contractor was the Gentosi Bros. of Costa Mesa, with the windows designed and installed by Joseph Maes Studios of Laguna Beach.  Fr. Ron made daily visits to the construction site.  Upon observing the new stained glass windows, he inquired as to their vulnerability to earthquakes and damage from rocks.  He was told that you could run over them with a steamroller and they wouldn’t break.  He responded by making them place a section of the windows on the ground so they could prove their statement! 

Cement_TruckSeating capacity was listed as 999, with nave seating at 699 plus a total of 300 in the adjacent pews on each side of the church.  The contracted price was listed at $357,000.00, with furnishings at $100.000.00.

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