TALLADEGA -- The long-term restoration project at St. Peter’s Episcopal Church in Talladega has concluded, and members are of the congregation are enjoying the results.

“We are all so relieved and thankful to have the project completed,” St. Peter's Episcopal Church member and lead church restoration consultant Ed King said. “We were beginning to think this day would never get here.”

In 2015, Priest Father Ben Turnage, church pastor, appointed a restoration committee. Turnage has served as priest at St. Peter’s since September 2011.

Longtime church members Jim Armstrong and King were selected to provide their knowledge to the gradual construction project.

Since August of that same year, multiple improvements have been made to the church’s structure, including the remortaring of the brick, cleaning of the stained glass, repairs to the original slate roof, updates to the electrical wiring, refurbishing of the pews and replastering and repainting of the walls.

What was once a construction zone is now adorned with red and white poinsettias and numerous handmade wreath arrangements.

“It was a lot of work but long overdue,” King said. “The church decided to move forward with the restoration, not only because so much was needed to be done, but also so that it would not have to been done over again in the future.”

The project was funded by church members through a restoration campaign.

King said the congregation had its first Sunday service back in the restored chapel Dec. 10 and is continuing to adjust.

Services were temporarily held in the church parish hall while the project unfolded.

“Everyone is glad to be back in our permanent home,” King said. “We are thrilled we were able to finish in time for Christmas.”

The church will host its Christmas Eve morning service at 10:30 Sunday and an evening service beginning at 8:30.

“The entire community is welcome to attend any Sunday,” King said. “If anyone would like to see the improvements and a tour, we will be glad to set that up, too. Our church office is open Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m. until noon.”

About St. Peter’s

St. Peter’s Episcopal Church is filled with history.

The structure was designed by renowned architect Frank Lockwood in 1927.

According to King, the dedication service was in May of 1928.

“Lockwood also designed famous structures in Talladega such as Heritage Hall and houses throughout the Silk Stocking District,” King said.

For more information about St. Peter’s Episcopal Church or the restoration process, contact King at 256-362-2368 or visit the church website at www.saintpeters.dioala.org/