St. Teresa to host Glen Campbell at John Ascuaga's Nugget June 15

St. Teresa of Avila Catholic Community Church is receiving the assistance of a performing star to help it raise funds for a new parish.

Recording artist Glen Campbell will present a special benefit show at John Ascuaga's Nugget on June 15.

The parish of St. Teresa's seeks to create a beautiful place of worship that will reach the entire community. With the building project five years in the making, the new facility will be home to a 1,000-seat church, fellowship hall, Sunday school rooms, office space, large greeting areas and parking facilities.

Eventually a new St. Teresa's parochial school will be built on an adjoining four acres recently purchased through funds of the Reno Diocese.

To complete the church, $1.5 to $2 million is needed. Construction is scheduled to begin this month.

One-hundred percent of the benefit profits will be given to the church's construction fund. The concert and benefits are made possible by John and Rose Ascuaga. The Ascuaga's are members of St. Teresa's.

"He (Ascuaga) is doing this out of respect for Father Jerry (Hanley)," said Helaine Jesse, chairwoman of the fund raising committee.

"The Ascuagas are members of the church and regular attendees of services. John doesn't like a whole lot of publicity, but it's really wonderful they are doing this. He just likes Father Jerry so much.

"I can't believe how much he and his staff are doing for us. Once a person pays the ticket price for the show, dinner and cocktails are included. This is very special."

St. Teresa's parish was established in 1858 when Father Joseph Gallagher founded Saint Teresa of Avila Church in Carson City at the request of Archbishop Joseph Sadoc Alemany of San Francisco.

The present site of the church was purchased by Father Hugh Gallagher, assigned to Carson City by Alemany.

Gallagher and Jacob Klein, owner of the local brewery, built the first church which subsequently blew down in 1862.

In 1865, Father John Curley built a church on the same site, which served people of Carson City until 1870, when Father John Grace razed the church and built another in its place. The main structure of this church continues to serve the congregation of St. Teresa today.

The church was expanded and restored in 1980. It was the first time any major construction work had been done since 1870. Colorful stained glass work along with paintings and murals were added in 1930. Father Jerry Hanley said they will take the stained glass windows with them to the new church.

"This is a giant step for us, to actually begin construction, but at the same time we really have to respect the history of the church," said Hanley.

As construction begins, members of the church will compile information and photographs to put together a book of memories.

"We are still trying to find different ways of bringing people closer together. And it will be nice to not have to turn people away from a service at the new church. We've had to do that here. This project has been a mammoth task. Everyone has had input on it. But I wouldn't want to do it again."

Plans for the new church have progressed over the past five years. The fund-raising didn't begin until Nov. 1. The church, which has been a religious icon in Carson City for many years, extended its community involvement into several outreach programs. It helped found Friends in Service Helping and Advocates to End Domestic Violence.

"St. Teresa's will never have to move again. If needed, it can be built onto. We're ready for the next 150 years at least. It will be something wonderful. All of us have to leave home sometime and when we do, we find something better. From here, it can only get better."

Plans are for the congregation to be in the new church by June 2001.

At the June 15 concert, Campbell will feature many of his hits such as "Rhinestone Cowboy," "Gentle on my Mind," "By the time I get to Phoenix," "Galveston" and "Southern Nights."

Doors open and cocktail service begins at 6 p.m. Dinner is served at 7:15 with the show to begin at 8:30 p.m. Tickets are $100 per person or $1,000 for a table of eight.

Call 356-3300.

What: Benefit Concert featuring Glen Campbell

When: 6 p.m. June 15

Where: John Ascuaga's Nugget

Info: 356-3300 or (800) 843-2427


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