By Dave Lorenzatti
Special to The Miscellany
MCCORMICK—After Bishop Robert E. Guglielmone dedicated the new Good Shepherd Church in 2010 it was time to discuss the future of the former church located about 100 yards away.
Father Allam Marreddy, the parish administrator, and the pastoral council decided to convert it into a rectory and on Aug. 31 parishioners helped move the priest into his new home.
The old Good Shepherd Church was built in 1926 to serve Our Lady of Lourdes parish in Greenwood.
After moving into a new church in 1963, the old building was donated to Good Shepherd. In 1964, the structure was uprooted, placed on a trailer, and towed over 30 miles of back roads to McCormick.
In 2005, the building began to show its age and a parish needs assessment committee recommended that a new church be built rather than make costly improvements to the old one. The 300-member congregation had outgrown the original location, which had limited options for expansion. So a new church was built.
Converting the 85-year-old building into a rectory cost less than $50,000, most of which was paid for with donations. Good Shepherd facilities manager Terry O’Reilly said about 12 parishioners with experience as carpenters, electricians and plumbers completed most of the work.
Approximately 30 other members installed carpeting, painted, cleaned and performed other tasks such as providing lunches for the workers. A 500-square-foot second floor was added with two bedrooms and a bathroom for visiting priests.
The women’s clubs of Good Shepherd and Sacred Heart Church in Abbeville, where Father Marreddy is also administrator, held a housewarming party and contributed household items.
Since 2003, Good Shepherd has built and paid for a new church, a parish life center, rosary garden, columbarium and outdoor stations of the cross, at a cost of $1.3 million.
“Those things could not have been possible without the generosity of our members, visitors and friends,” Father Marreddy said.
By Dave Lorenzatti