Auxiliary gives $100,000 for AMC chapel

Published 1:57 pm Monday, May 12, 2008

Austin Medical Center -Mayo Health System will open a new chapel.

Thanks in part to the AMC Auxiliary, the chapel project will become a reality later this year.

The auxiliary donated $100,000 to the recent hospital and clinic renovation and expansion and chapel project.

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“We appreciate the compassion and commitment that our volunteers demonstrate every day at Austin Medical Center,” said Dr. Tim Johnson, CEO, Austin Medical Center-Mayo Health System. “In addition to the many hours of service that our volunteers provide to AMC they have often stepped forward with their financial resources. The volunteers’ financial pledge for the construction of a chapel is greatly appreciated. It is also very much appreciated that several volunteers have been involved in the design of the chapel.”

At the Auxiliary May 9 event, Adam Rees, chief administrative officer, said, “On behalf of AMC Administration, I want to thank all of you, our volunteers, for your tremendous service.”

The announcement was made public Friday at an auxiliary dinner meeting at First Congregational Church of Christ.

Rod Nordeng, AMC’s vice president of organizational support and liaison to the auxiliary’s chapel committee, described the chapel, which will be located on the hospital’s second floor .

Two sets of double doors will ensure handicapped accessibility to the chapel which will be open 24/7.

There will, of course, be an altar and cross plus a cathedral-style ceiling.

Stained glass fashioned by craftsman Charles Van House will enhance the chapel and come from the same place — Kokomo, In. — where the Tiffany company obtains its stained glass.

“As everyone knows we have had no chapel in the hospital for a long time and it is long overdue,” Nordeng said.

While design development work is expected to continue for another three weeks, Nordeng indicated three in-house carpenters, all graduates from Riverland Community Colleges’ carpentry department, will begin work in June on the 15 by 19-foot chapel project.

The auxiliary’s chapel project committee included Janet Borchardt (auxiliary treasurer), Ken Jensen, Karen Olson (auxiliary president), Marilyn Berg and Robert Meyer.

“We couldn’t have done it without the profits we make from our coffee and gift shop,” said auxiliary president Olson. “That is so important to all of the donations we are able to make to the hospital and clinic.”

“This is just tremendous,” said Borchardt, who chaired the committee. “It was made possible by what we do in the coffee shop and gift shop and the proceeds we make. It couldn’t have been done without the fundraisers.”

“It’s something we have all wanted for a long time; even the nurses say they will appreciate having a chapel to go to,” Borchardt said.

“We are happy to be a part of such an important project as this,” said Auxiliary project committee member Jensen.

The $100,000 donation by the auxiliary is the largest made by the organization.

The Auxiliary donated $75,000 in 2 increments to the recent hospital/clinic renovation and expansion project. The remaining $25,000 is designated for the chapel project.

The list of other projects supported financially by the Auxiliary is lengthy and varied throughout the Austin facilities.

On hand to witness the festivities was Craig Johnson, president of the AMC Foundation among other dignitaries.