Madera church works to replace mosaic that was destroyed in storm

MADERA, Calif. (KFSN) -- Christmas services at a Madera church are expected to be even more special this year. Father John Warburton at St. Joachim Catholic Church in Madera cannot wait to show off the new artwork.

"They're starting from the bottom and it's like a big jigsaw puzzle," Father John said.

Inside the workspace, artists are piecing it all together. The mosaic artwork is secured one numbered section at a time.

Project manager, David Romero said, "Actually 550 square feet so 450 pieces and they're all a puzzle. They have to unpack it right here in a certain order and it has to go up in the certain order."

The original image came crashing down in April of 2016 during a big storm. Insurance covered the loss so Father John went to Italy to look over the replacement mosaic.

"It's a wonderful kind of excitement. It goes right along with the season of advent, joyful anticipation." Father John said.

The workspace must be kept warm to make sure the tiles are securely attached.

Parishioners cannot wait to see the image of St. Joachim return to their church and it is going to happen soon.

Father John said, "If all goes well we hope that the scaffold will come down on December 22nd, 23rd."

Which would make a wonderful Christmas gift for the community.
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