The dome set up over the shrine of Oklahoma’s martyr, Blessed Stanley Rother
OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – Construction continues on a shrine for a beloved Oklahoma priest who was killed in Guatemala.
Blessed Stanley Rother is well known in the Catholic community for his missionary work in Guatemala.
Rother started out as a farmer in Okarche before becoming a priest and missionary.
Rother served in Guatemala during the country’s civil war, a dangerous time to lead a church. In 1981 he was assassinated for his faith.
“He had the courage to want to stay and return to Guatemala to share his faith and share the love he had for his people, and then that love will be transferred here to Oklahoma,” said Theresa Hurt.
Rother was beatified by the Catholic Church, making him the first person born in the United States to be recognized as a martyr and beatified.
In March, hundreds of Oklahoma residents and the Archbishop of Oklahoma City signed their names on a beam that will definitely be part of the Blessed Stanley Rother Shrine.
Now the crews have made even more progress on the shrine.
Construction crews lifted the dome on the Blessed Stanley Rother Shrine on Thursday.
“It was a momentous moment in the construction of the sanctuary which will become a visible beacon of faith for thousands of people around the world. They will come to visit our state and our city and learn about our Ordinary Priest of Okarche who has lived an extraordinary life, ”said Archbishop Paul S. Coakley, Archbishop of Oklahoma City. “I am grateful to everyone who played a role in this project and look forward to the dedication next year.”
The dome of the sanctuary was built on the ground using cold-formed metallic steel before being lifted onto the church. The dome is 34 feet high and has a circumference of about 40 feet.
“Now, we’ve crowned this church. In this church, we strive to show Christ, to exalt Christ and to manifest Christ to his people, ”said Leif Arvidson, executive director of the shrine. “Thank you Archbishop Coakley and Archdiocesan staff for bringing us to this milestone, and everyone at The Boldt Company, and all of your contractors, for your good work. Thanks to Franck & Lohsen, ADG, Cooper Project Advisors, members of the construction committee and members of the board of directors. Thank you to our priests and benefactors. All of your prayers, support and hard work have brought us to this point. “
The sanctuary will not be completed until the end of summer 2022.
It will include a 2,000-seat church, a chapel where Blessed Stanley will be buried, an educational building, an event space and several areas designed for shrines and devotion.
In addition to the Spanish colonial-style church, organizers say there will be a museum and a pilgrimage center.
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