St. Joseph's in Endicott to take part in Sacred Sites Open House

ENDICOTT, N.Y. - The 7th annual Sacred Sites Open House takes place this Sunday and it's an opportunity to check out roughly a dozen houses of worship in our area.

Among them is Saint Joseph's Church on Hayes Avenue in Endicott.

Built by mostly Slovak immigrants in 1930, the interior of the church was built without support columns, providing an unobstructed view of the altar.

This year's Sacred Sites tour is focused on stained glass windows.

Saint Joseph's windows were created by the Mayer company which still produces stained glass in Munich, Germany today.

Other highlights include statues near the entrance to the church of Saint Anne with her daughter the Virgin Mary, Saint John the Evangelist and a depiction of the Passion of Christ.

There's also a traditional Czech statue of the Christ Child.

Father Charles Opondo-Owora has been the priest at Saint Joseph's for the past 9 years.

He says the congregation takes great pride in the upkeep of the church and grounds.

"They are individuals who are so proud of what they have achieved in life and they wish to maintain it. You look at the structure and it speaks to who they are. So to them, I think the faith that they profess is part and parcel of their livelihood, it's part of something they need to pass on to the next generation," he said.

Also part of the tour will be the Our Lady of Lourdes Shrine located behind the church.

It was finished in 1940 as a pilgrimage destination and a place where people can worship 24/7.

Saint Joseph's will be open to the public from noon until 2 on Sunday following the weekly mass.

For a list of other houses of worship open to the public on Sunday, and their times, go to NYLandmarks.org.


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