Published January 8, 2015
CONYERS—The words of a saint and pope were there to inspire and edify parishioners at St. Pius X Church as renovations in the church’s sanctuary were revealed this Christmas.
Construction for the sanctuary project began Sept. 15, 2014, and the first phase of renovations was unveiled on Dec. 19 at the Conyers parish, led by pastor Father Randy Mattox.
By the time midnight Mass was celebrated, the vivid poinsettias and Nativity scene were enhanced by the red and gold arch added behind the historic stone altar, which received a wooden frame. Around the arch is a quote in Latin from the parish’s patron saint, St. Pius X, “Instaurare omnia in Christo” (“To restore all things in Christ”).
The tabernacle was moved from a niche in the left front of the church to the center behind the altar, below a new crucifix. Statues of Mary and Joseph, as well as one of St. Pius X, will be added soon as part of the project. The Risen Christ figure that had been a focal point in the sanctuary was moved to the entryway to inspire and welcome people as they enter the church.
Father Mattox said that the renovations exceeded his expectations.
“It’s very warm and inviting,” he said, “with a grandeur that’s not over the top.” Celebrating Mass there on Christmas brought him a sense of “holiness and sweetness.”
He said that the words of Psalm 84 came to his mind during the Christmas Mass, “How lovely is your dwelling place, O Lord.”