As painters, we understand how color and craftsmanship can revitalize a tired space and celebrate its history. H.J. Holtz & Son is primarily known for high-end residential painting, but our company takes a strong interest in projects that uplift and beautify the greater Richmond community.
One of the city’s historical gems is St. Elizabeth’s Catholic Church in North Side, which held its first mass on Christmas Day in 1925. The church has undergone several renovations throughout its 90-year history, but the most recent repairs took place after the sanctuary ceiling collapsed in 2006. The damage destroyed the altar and its surroundings, but with support from the parish community and financial assistance from across the country, the sanctuary was repaired and re-opened in time for Holy Week in April 2007.
Paying for these repairs was a challenge for the church, whose small yet diverse congregation comes from a socioeconomically-disadvantaged area of Richmond.
“It’s something we couldn’t afford – we’re in a poor community in Highland Park,” Rev. James Arsenault said. Arsenault, or “Father Jim,” has been the pastor of St. Elizabeth’s Catholic Church since 2012. He also serves as a parochial vicar at St. Michael’s Catholic Church in Glen Allen, which was where he met the Holtz family.
When Father Jim asked H.J. Holtz & Son to breathe new life into St. Elizabeth’s by painting the front façade, Company President Rick Holtz agreed to perform the work at or below cost.
“When this community does work on a project, it needs to be done well so it’ll last for years,” Holtz said. “And we knew that not only could we work with their budget, but we could give them a job that would last for years to come.”
H.J. Holtz & Son wanted to honor the church’s history by highlighting its architectural details, which had previously been painted a single color. The columns were drab gray, and so was the ceiling under the portico at the church’s entrance.
“By using a palette of three to four different colors to paint the front façade, we highlighted all those different features to give it a more sophisticated look, and so that people could see the detail work that was never really noticed before,” Holtz said.
The exterior of the church had never received such a makeover before. H.J. Holtz & Son’s painters restored the entire exterior of the building, including the front-facing Corinthian columns and the metal cross on top of the portico.
“They had great ideas on how to do the work and they took the time to help,” Father Jim said. “It’s a wonderful partnership.”
H.J. Holtz & Son has completed other much-needed renovation projects with the church, including repainting the basement that serves as a multipurpose room, and the interior of the rectory across the street. The metal cabinets in the sacristy got a fresh coat of paint for the first time since the 1920s.
“[H.J. Holtz & Son] brought a lot of life into the place, and people have recognized it,” Father Jim said, adding that neighbors have stopped by to compliment the church’s new look. “People in the parish have a lot of pride in the building.”
H.J. Holtz & Son understands that paint and wallpaper can do so much more than beautify a space – they can inspire a community. Whether you want to transform your home, office or place of worship, our experienced craftsman can help you to realize your vision.