New library opened at Immaculate Conception

GOOSE CREEK — What began as a small section of books in the back of Immaculate Conception Church is now a parish library in the new All-Ministries Center.

The library, about the size of a classroom, is set up as a conference room, and has an estimated 3,000 books and tapes. It also features a small section of books available in Spanish and Portuguese.

Diane Jackson donates her time and energy to running the library. She has cataloged and shelved the books, the majority of which were donated, with the help of several ladies from the parish.

“Most of the books are … from other libraries,” she said. “Mepkin Abbey donated some of their duplicates.”

Roughly 95 percent of the books are religious, though the library has something for everyone, including children’s books and videos; travel and parenting books; novels; dictionaries and encyclopedias; and Bibles in various languages. A teen section also is underway.

Statues honoring the various cultures within the parish are on display and the collection is open to all.

“It wasn’t an afterthought,” said Father Frank Palmieri, pastor of Immaculate Conception. “The library was a room that was planned. The idea was to take a book, read it or spend some time.”

Library items are checked out based on an honor system, and generally people are allowed to borrow them for two weeks. There are no fines or late fees, however, and currently an estimated 30 books are being borrowed each month.

“It has general access,” said  Lois Masouris, Ph.D., adult programs coordinator. “The reference section is very large. There are a variety of books, new ones as well as the standard classics. We’re always grateful for the generosity with donated items.

“Diane and her group have done a great job,” she said.

While the library is able to lend out many books and tapes, it is still in need of a few things.

“People want newer things. We only have one or two DVDs,” Jackson said. “We’re hoping for donations of those soon, because people ask for that.”

The library can be accessed after Mass on Sundays, and the building is open on some evenings.

For more information call Immaculate Conception Church, (843) 553-1386.