Massive rain and hail storm damages Old San Ysidro Church in Corrales. Courtesy/CHS
Donations being sought to help with storm damage repairs and preservation of the Old San Ysidro Church in Corrales at 966 Old Church Road.
For more than 40 years, it has been the mission of Corrales Historical Society (CHS) to restore and maintain the Old San Ysidro Church, located in the historic heart of the Village of Corrales. The Old Church dates back to 1868 and is listed on both the New Mexico State Register of Cultural Properties and the National Register of Historic Places.
Work underway to remove and replace damaged adobes. Courtesy/CHS
It is a significant treasure and a huge part of Corrales history, culture, and community … so important as to be featured on the Corrales Seal.
The Old Church has been the spiritual home and center of community life for more than a century. She is the gathering place for music programs, art shows, and speaker series. She plays host to Harvest Festival and Heritage Day. She holds special memories for many who have been married there or held a memorial service for a loved one there.
During the massive rain and hail storm of 2013, the exterior of the Old Church received extensive damage.
Through the efforts of Corrales Historical Society and especially Commander Tanya Lattin of the Corrales Fire Department, FEMA funds of about $58,000 were obtained to repair the damage. In addition, CHS paid about $12,000 to repair and stabilize the sacristy portion of the Old Church.
The work began a couple weeks ago and all was going according to plan. The sacristy was successfully underpinned and Ed Crocker, of Crocker Ltd., was starting to work on removing and then replacing damaged adobes and applying a new mud finish to the surface of the Old Church.
Unfortunately, when the old mud covering was removed from the Old Church, serious structural issues came to light, including several large cracks and severe loss of adobe material all around the building. The estimate to repair this newly discovered damage to the Old Church exceeds $20,000.
This work is not covered by the FEMA contract. The Board of CHS has once again stepped up to pay these monies, at least to the extent there are no other available sources of money. CHS has now learned that the Annex, the small adobe built by Pete Smith to support the functions of the Old Church, has significant problems, which will cost another $16,000 to $20,000 to repair.
CHS is now seeking donations from the local community of Corrales and beyond to help save the Old Church for future generations. Much of the existing funds that have been accumulated over the past 40 years have been spent on many projects, including a new roof, lighting, plumbing, a complete remudding of the interior of the church, and more … and are now being spent on the recent storm damage.
CHS is asking people to donate to the CHS “ROCK” Fund, which stands for “Repair the Old Church Kindly.” Monies donated will help to defray the significant costs of the storm damage, and will go toward the preservation of the Old Church well into the future. To make a donation to the preservation of the Old Church, visit the website at www.corraleshistory.org and click on “Donate to ROCK Fund.” Or send a check to CHS Rock Fund, P.O. Box 1051, Corrales, NM 87048. To become a member of CHS, contact the membership chairperson, Jan Protz at email@example.com or 505.890.5953.