Two local artists were hired to marry the vision of house of worship meets pristine wilderness.
Lake Placid Bronze sculptor Robert Eccleston created an altar with a base that features two grand tree trunks that intertwine skyward.
“They (the tree trunks) speak of the humanity and divinity of Christ,” Yonkovig said. “Rob really outdid himself. He said this was the most enjoyable project he’s ever done.”
Yonkovig said that Eccleston usually creates military monuments that require exact measurements and style.
“But here his creative juices just flowed.”
Also on the makeover list was a baptismal font, which was created by Lake Placid sculptor Tyler Rand.
“Baptism took on a very significant role,” Yonkovig said.
Rand’s baptismal font is made from Lake Placid granite.
“It’s a billion-year-old piece of granite. The bowl has Whiteface Mountain, Mount Marcy and the Great Range carved right into the sides,” Yonkovig said. “It makes the statement that we live our faith right here in the mountains.”
During the renovations, the church was totally gutted. In addition to the centerpiece altar and baptismal font, the church also received a new pulpit, pews, electrical wiring, lighting, paint, radiant heating, a ventilation system and porcelain tiles that grace the center aisle.
Baker Liturgical Art employee Geoffrey Kostecki created a mural that’s displayed in the church sanctuary. It surrounds a window that depicts the Ascension dated to 1905 and part of the original church.
“He created a mountain-scape surrounding that window,” Yonkovig said. “It really has brought the window out. It’s striking. He’s a true artist.”
The altar was installed exactly one week ago today in time for the dedication ceremony last Saturday. Some 400 people, including the counsel general of Brazil from Montreal and Lake Placid Mayor Craig Randall, attended.
“It was an overflowing church,” Yonkovig said. “We had a choir of 35 voices, violins, trumpets; the music was exceptionally uplifting.”