Dec 08-02

Past-E-Mail: Cam Notes - 2002: December: Dec 08-02
St. Joseph renovation - Before...    ...scroll down to share comments
Photos by Mary Drew
...and After    ...scroll down to share comments
Photos by Mary Drew

Mary Drew, Lake Linden, MI on Sunday, December 8, 2002 - 08:29 am:

Today Bishop James Garland will be here to celebrate the 90th anniversary of St. Joseph Church in Lake Linden. It was a huge undertaking to restore the interior to what it was originally painted. The project was started in January 2002 and completed in June 2002. Conrad Schmitt Studios, Inc. of New Berlin, WI were the painters. During those months of work, the church was filled with scaffolding up to the ceiling and covered in plastic! Father Eric Olson said mass in the basement of the church, which was fixed up as a make-shift church, complete with some pews, (the remainder of the seats were folding chairs.), stations of the cross and piano music to accompany the choir instead of the organ! The parish held a pledge drive to pay for the restoration, hoping to raise $100,000.00. A total of $82,755.00 has been pledged to date! Anyone wishing to donate can contact:

St. Joseph Church
701 Calumet
St. Lake Linden, MI 49945

The restoration isn't just a "paint" job, it is truly a work of art! Come visit sometime and see the beauty yourself!!

Mary Drew
LakeFront Adult Foster Care
Lake Linden, MI

By Mary Schei, Florida on Sunday, December 8, 2002 - 09:03 am:

When I woke up this morning in (partly) sunny South Florida, I had no idea that I would be taking a trip to the past on my favorite website. When I was a little girl I would sit in that church and know that I was in the house of God - I really thought that he lived there. It was always awe-inspiring and the renovation is amazing. As I looked at it this morning - just weeks before Christmas - I was flooded with fond memories of my youth, my loved ones here and gone, and how lucky I was to be born and raised in that little town in Northern Michigan, Lake Linden. Thank you Mary and everyone at Pasty Central and Happy Holidays to all.

By Donna on Sunday, December 8, 2002 - 09:08 am:

This IS indeed one of the most breathtaking places in the Copper Country...I was fortunate enough to wander through, from the "scaffolding to the ceiling" stage, to the glorious completion.

Inside this church, you KNOW you are in the presence of the Divine.

By Kate, CA on Sunday, December 8, 2002 - 10:21 am:

Truly inspiring. A Wow?

By on Sunday, December 8, 2002 - 10:27 am:

Deserves a WOW, good job...

By Alex Tiensivu, Georgia, WOW!... NOT! on Sunday, December 8, 2002 - 11:44 am:

Preparing to place foot in mouth, close, and chew: What is a WOW?

By on Sunday, December 8, 2002 - 12:19 pm:

WOW is special photograph recognition selected by Charlie. Go to

and you will see the most recent WOWs. No question should go unasked or is beneath an answer. Good question Alex...

By Candy, CA on Sunday, December 8, 2002 - 12:24 pm:

I think WOW actually stands for "Wallpaper Of the Week," Alex -- Charlie has these pics set up to slide smoothly into your desktop and give you a little glimpse of "home" all week long, until the next WOW comes along.

By Steve Pummill, Lake Linden, MI. on Sunday, December 8, 2002 - 01:02 pm:

St. Joe's is certainly worthy of a WOW. It's great to see an effort by a small community for such a project. One can see this kind of spirit all over the Copper Country. There certainly are many structures unique to this area that deserve the same kind of TLC. Great photos Mary.

By Brian,TC on Sunday, December 8, 2002 - 02:31 pm:

What a beautiful place...I spent many childhood summer days in Lake Linden...My mom grew up in Bootjack....I always wondered what this Church looked like inside...It is truly beautiful.

Thank you for the awesome photos..

By Brian, TC on Sunday, December 8, 2002 - 02:34 pm:

When we were there in the summer we went to the Jacobsville church....that is another wonderful place....Maybe someone can post a pic of that was SOOOOO neat there...

By Alex knows what a WOW is! on Sunday, December 8, 2002 - 03:09 pm:

All I can say is... WOW!


By Daryl Laitila on Sunday, December 8, 2002 - 03:57 pm:

I took quite a few pictures last summer inside St.
Joseph's. Please take a look at the slide show

The pictures will change every 10 seconds. Sit back
and enjoy the most beautiful church I've seen in a long

By amsaari mi. on Sunday, December 8, 2002 - 04:21 pm:

I'm a neophyte computer learner please bear with me. My first time finding Pasty net. I visited this beautiful church several years ago and these pictures are really beautiful! Thank you, Charlie.
A Laurium resident, AMS

By Kay Burt-Willson, MI on Sunday, December 8, 2002 - 04:27 pm:

How very lovely to see this church once again. I attended one service with my Aunt Carol and Uncle Marty Dennis. It was a lovely moment and is a beautiful memory. Thank you for reminding me.

By Dawn Marmor, OR on Sunday, December 8, 2002 - 06:45 pm:

Hey - where are all the snow pic's on the WOW page? Here it is December already and I am still using a picture of my boys in a wheelbarrow of leaves for wallpaper. It's time to change the scenery from brown to white!

By Gary P. Westland, MI on Sunday, December 8, 2002 - 09:07 pm:

I see that Father Eric has not found a communion rail yet. Any one out there know if he is having any luck??

By Mark Jilbert, Grand Rapids, MI on Sunday, December 8, 2002 - 11:19 pm:

It is absolutely wonderful to see some of the luxurious splendor of the Copper Country restored to its original beauty. Many of the structures throughout Houghton/Hancock/Calumet and Laurium were and still are absolutely astounding works of art. The last time I was in St. Joseph's was in late July of 1988 when we laid my father to rest. I was too young then to truly appreciate the architectural wonder before me, but it surely has a special place in my heart now that I am mature enough to appreciate it.

By nlm,brighton, mi. on Monday, December 9, 2002 - 02:42 am:

The pictures of St. Joseph's are truly beautiful. Thanks, Daryl!

By pegg, fla on Monday, December 9, 2002 - 07:47 am:

That's a Holy WOW!!!!! Thanks for the tour Daryl.

By Kate, CA on Monday, December 9, 2002 - 09:14 am:

Daryl, your photos show the new splendor of St.
Joseph's with great detail, thank you.

By JAD, Oskar on Monday, December 9, 2002 - 09:31 am:

The ceilings above the side areas (barely visible in the "after" photo) are dark blue and scattered with gold gilt stars which reflect light, and the walls around the organ chamber were painted dark blue showing off the organ pipes. (The photo was
taken from the rear balcony where the organ is located.)Missing from the visible restoration is the audio restoration. Shag carpet was replaced with marble and tile. An "acoustic" carpet was laid, the acoustics enhanced, & the reverberation rate increased. I've played the 1916 Casavant. Father Eric Olson has spearheaded a wonderful visible restoration job; likewise organist Dave Short deserves kudos for the upkeep and enlarging of the audio job. Of course, it helps that Father Eric also can play!

By Jack O'Brien Grandville MI. on Monday, December 9, 2002 - 04:14 pm:

I attended Mass at St Joseph Church with my sister and brother in law (Peg and Dan Belo)
before this work was done,and I think this
is the most beautiful Renovation job I have
ever seen.Thanks to Daryl Laitila for the great
slide show you put together.This is the best
site on the internet,it is the first one I click
on every morning.Keep up the good work Charlie!

By Mary koepel Heide, IL on Monday, December 9, 2002 - 05:20 pm:

This is truly spectacular. Thanks for the slide show, Daryl. We went to many a midnight Mass at St. Joseph's and although it was a beautiful church, the restoration has made it a true work of art. The ceiling of the side aisles look just like the ceiling in the chapel at the Palace of Versailles.

By Ann from Mi. on Monday, December 9, 2002 - 10:31 pm:

David Short is doing a wonderful job of overseeing the organ restoration. It must be a treat to regularly hear him play that lovely organ! He's quite a fine musician.

By geri/kingsford mi on Tuesday, December 10, 2002 - 10:29 am:

daryl..the picture show was fantastic...a must see..we will be coming up in the spring to see the church...we haven't traveled to your area for a few years...but...after those pictures and pasty cam there and have one of charlies pasties. have really enjoyed the site and sights of this website and visit it regularly now...GREAT JOB!!!!

By Mary Lou on Tuesday, December 10, 2002 - 11:04 am:

January 17th will mark the 50th anniversary of my marriage to my childhood sweetheart, E. Gary Curtin, in St Joseph's church. He passed away in 2001 so I will be "celebrating" next month with our sons. The vows taken that day in that beautiful church, before God and our families served us well throughout the years. Thanks for the "anniversary gift".

By Dawn Marmor, OR on Tuesday, December 10, 2002 - 12:16 pm:

Does anyone know how to get in touch wiith David Short? He was my piano teacher for several years. It would be nice to catch up with him a bit.

By Ann in Mi. on Wednesday, December 11, 2002 - 09:52 am:

You can reach David Short at the St. Joseph's Church in Lake Linden as he plays there regularly. (Check online for their listing!

By Yooper on Wednesday, December 11, 2002 - 12:11 pm:

What an amazing restoration!

The parishoners of this church should be very proud of what they have accomplished.

By Kevin, Brighton, MI on Thursday, December 12, 2002 - 09:44 am:

I remember when I was in college, they restored my childhood church, St. Joseph's in Dexter, Michigan and I was quite dissapointed as I had loved the previous ageless, classic style. It has since grown on me.

It is truly a testament to the efforts of those involved that there is no such need for the restoration of Lake Linden's St. Joseph's Church to "grow" on anyone. It is truly a wonderous restoration job. Very beautiful!

By Pat Willson/Florida on Saturday, December 14, 2002 - 01:43 pm:

I was so impressed with the renovation of St. Joseph, that I Emailed my daughter immediately to inform her of the web site. She responded with her comments on Dec. 8. (Kay Burt-Willson of Southfield, Mi.) My brother, Martin Dennis of Lake Linden, advised me how to get to the pictures again. The church is absolutely beautiful. Perhaps one day we can return in person.

By Carol Pearce Greene on Sunday, December 22, 2002 - 05:49 pm:

What beautiful pictures of the remarkable restoration. I was glad to read about the restoration of the organ. I attended midnight mass there once or twice in about 1950. I hadn't realized that the organ was a Casavant. Having lived in Montreal for the last 32 years, I have learned about the history of these wonderful organs, and have heard many magnificent Casavant recitals in this great organ city. I have also toured the Casavant Organ works near here. The craftmanship is wonderful. I will hope to hear David Short play St. Joseph's some summer soon.

By walter p tampa fla on Sunday, December 22, 2002 - 07:20 pm:

very nice walter p

By M June Aho on Monday, December 23, 2002 - 01:59 pm:

My Mother and Dad were married at St Joseph"s Church ib Sept l903. My Mother is 101 and lives alone in Hubbell. She is an amputee and doing great with th help of aids as she wants to be in her own home. I attend St Joseph and now attend St Joseph in Lakeland Florida for the winter. It is a beautiful old church but nothing like St Joseph"s in Lake Linden. We are fortunate to have Fr Eric Olson as our Pastor. God Bless hime. My Mothers name is Isabelle Audette

By Nancy Blom, MN on Friday, January 3, 2003 - 10:54 pm:

Praise be to God! Isn't this a gorgeous church? I was in this church several years ago, before the restoration, and had the privilege of meeting Father Olson then. I was on vacation with friends and will have to show them this site so they can see the changes also.

By eva olar sault canada on Monday, February 10, 2003 - 01:30 pm:

Dear People of Lake Linden Michigan.
Last year I visited with my cousin in Lake Linden.
It had been 40 plus years since I was there last.
My husband and I were there for the 4th of July.
My parents used to visit Alex and Valida Gagnon.
I enjoyed everything there. I can not say one was
better than the other as my thoughts raced
through the years. Everything was so beautiful.
But St. Joseph Church......was awesome....straight
from Heaven. What a beautiful gift you people
have there in Lake Linden. May God Bless each and
everyone in your area. I hope to enjoy your
Church and Mass this summer once again in Lake Linden. eva olar

By Julie Barrie Holland the Netherlands on Tuesday, May 27, 2003 - 05:37 am:

what an amazing church it was beautiful before
but after its even more....Ive been living in
Europe the last few years and recently have
found your site ... My father grew up in this area
and his father was a miner he was from Wales...
we grew up on pasties so I look forward for
a little "taste" of home look at all the pics...
please keep them coming...and after seeing them all I wish I was able to grow up here ...its really beautiful...My maiden name was Chynoweth
if anyone knew my family way back when...please feel free to email me ... Ive emailed this site to both my bros hope they enjoy as much as i do...
Julie Barrie......

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