Browsing Fr. Poggemeyer's Weekly Letter

March 13, 2022


Dear Parishioners,

A couple weeks ago I sent an explanation memo to the Diocesan Finance Office and Diocesan Legal Counsel, in order to get permission to sign a design/architectural contract with Peterman & Associates out of Findlay. This is for the new storage/maintenance building we are planning. The following is the content of that letter to the Diocese, to keep you informed: With this memo I would like to set in motion the process towards asking the Bishop for permission to build a storage/maintenance building on the St. Wendelin Church property. 

The Need

With the sale of the high school property, we lost not only the maintenance manager's office, but also four storage buildings, which held items for basic parish life (such as a huge Easter tomb, large industrial carpets, etc.), but also for the annual parish festival, which was the biggest social event in Fostoria every year. We started a mini-fest this past August, joining the downtown Fostoria Historic Society Day; and the hope is that this mini-fest grow from downtown to include components on our own campus. Many parishioners and townspeople do not want to see the St. Wendelin Festival disappear completely. With that in mind, we kept the bare minimum of tables, chairs, stanchions, umbrella's, etc. for a future festival. The four storage buildings also held equipment, such as a plough and a forklift, etc. One of the storage buildings also served for cleaning of equipment such as the mowers.

Overall, we greatly reduced what was stored, but there remains storage needs beyond what we can handle presently. For temporary storage, we have filled two semi-trailers, loaned to us by a parishioner (see photo), as well as the rectory garage (see photos), as well as the Morton building out at the cemetery (see photos). Ever since putting the high school property up for sale, it was the plan eventually to build the needed storage/maintenance building on the church property.

The Resources Available

However, we did not plan on building it this soon. Our minds changed when we received an $88,503 check from the Fostoria Economic Development Corporation in December -- half the profit from sale of the four out-buildings on the high school property, once the demolition costs of the high school were covered. In addition to that check, we received a bequest for $11,213; and we have two bequests that should be in hand in the very near future -- one for about $15,000, the other for $125,000. Those sources add up to $239,716. Based on some conversations I had way back when first imagining a new storage/maintenance building, I believe that amount will come very close to covering its construction. We of course plan on getting at least three quotes from contractors, at which point we will know better the cost.

No Conflict With the Bishop's Capital Campaign

We would not have to do any formal fundraising; and therefore, we would not be in conflict with the Bishop's Capital Campaign. The finance council agreed that it makes sense, therefore, to build the new maintenance/storage building sooner, rather than later.  In fact, it was suggested that the building could be completed by late summer; coinciding with our wave of the Bishop's Capital Campaign, which begins in August. 

Zoning and Engineering/Architecture

I already spoke with Fostoria's Zoning Commissioner to ask about procedure in Fostoria, and to determine that there are no zoning issues. He came out to look at the site (see aerial view of our property for proposed location), and it seems initially that there are no obstacles regarding location; and he recommended Peterman & Associates out of Findlay to do the engineering and architectural drawings for us. Peterman does a lot of work with the City of Fostoria. The process should be much smoother using them.

I met with Peterman & Associates. They provided a quote of about $15,000 for Professional Design Service. The building will be about 60' x 80'. Perhaps about a third of the building will be separately walled, with some heat and air conditioning for maintenance work and cleaning vehicles, equipment, huge entry-way carpets, etc. The maintenance manager's office will also be in that separate section. There will be a small bathroom. There will be a large loft to increase storage capacity. It should be a pretty simple structure.

So, there is the memo I sent to the Diocese to begin the process. I got permission to sign the contract with Peterman & Associates, and they have already sent out a site survey team. I plan to assemble a small committee to help especially with the external look of the building. It seems to me we ought to match it somehow to the church itself; but I am not sure how. Peterman & Associates will help us with some options; and I am sure the final building contractor will as well.

Have a blessed week!

In cordibus Iesu, Mariae et Iosephus,

Father Poggemeyer


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