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November 26, 2012

A PLACE TO HEAL: St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church gets post-storm rededication

HENRYVILLE — Driving through Henryville, some healing from the devastating March 2 tornadoes is visible, such as houses and businesses being rebuilt.

The students of Henryville schools are back in a new building, people are moving into homes again and churches such as St. Francis Xavier Catholic are welcoming congregations back in the sanctuary.  

“It’s good to see everything come back together and see things getting fixed, like the school. The school looks great, but it is still taking time to get people back in place,” said Vicki Horine during the rededication open house of St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church on Sunday. “We’re not a very patient society, so we’re learning to step back and breath and appreciate what we have.”

The open house proceeded a special rededication service with 175 participants who enjoyed fellowship and a speaker.

“It has been wonderful. A lot of people from community came and it’s just a good crowd. I think all is very good. We are slowly picking up as people get into homes,” said the Rev. Steven Schaftlein of St. Francis church.

While the St. Francis congregation has been back inside their sanctuary for a couple of weeks, Schaftlein said that the rededication was festive.

Betty Jo Banet recalled the evening of the EF-4 tornado, as it was Banet who unlocked the church doors after it passed through Henryville and other parts of Southern Indiana. At first, everything looked OK, but soon extensive damage was discovered, which required the congregation to have services in the basement.

“It’s nice to see it all put back together like before the storms. Our church was full today and everyone is happy. It was very festive with holy water all over the place and lots of music,” said Banet, who has attended St. Francis since she was born.

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