Jim VanDusen and his wife, Sandra VanDusan, moved from Mississippi to Loudoun County four months ago. When they arrived, they joined Our Lady of Hope Catholic Church, a congregation anxiously awaiting the completion of their new church.
"Our sons, Bradley and Bobby, go to school here [Our Lady of Hope Catholic Elementary School]," Jim VanDusen said. "They’re best friends go to school here."
The VanDusen’s met longtime parish members Ken Traenkle and Sheila Traenkle through church.
"Our sons, Bobby and Justin, are best friends," Jim VanDusen said.
On Tuesday, Jan. 17, the VanDusen’s and the Traenkle’s joined hundreds of other Our Lady of Hope parishioners for the church’s procession and dedication. Arlington Diocese Bishop Paul S. Loverde led the ceremony.
The ceremony marks the completion of the five-and-a-half year, $17.5 million project, said the Diocese of Arlington’s director of communications Soren Johnson.
Parish members opened their hymnals and sang "Ave Maria" as they followed Loverde from the parish gym to the new church.
Cascades resident and parish member Marcia Perkins anxiously awaited the dedication, as she stood behind a long line of people.
"This is very exciting," Perkins said.
Perkins plans on attending Sunday mass, led by the Rev. William P. Saunders, this weekend.
Saunders was named Our Lady of Hope’s founding pastor in 2000.
"We are part of a Diocese," Saunders said. "In 2000, the Diocese saw spiritual needs for a church here."
More than 1,000 families belong to Our Lady of Hope Catholic Church.