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What’s going on in front of Holy Family Catholic Church?

Construction equipment can be seen outside Holy Family Catholic Church, located at 7817 Old Auburn Rd., in Citrus Heights. // CH Sentinel

Sentinel staff report–
Construction fencing and heavy equipment have recently appeared in front of Holy Family Catholic Church, along a high-traffic section of Old Auburn Road near Sunrise Boulevard.

The work is part of a landscaping improvement project, that will include several hundred feet of new iron fencing.

Deacon Mark Holt told The Sentinel earlier in June that concerns over vandalism and the safety of staff and parishioners initially prompted the project. He said the decision to install a fence was a difficult one for the church.

“There are a number of parishioners who are unhappy with that, and justifiably so,” Holt said in a prior interview. “Because anytime you add a fence across the front of a property it gives it the appearance of being institutionalized, and we certainly don’t want that.”

The decision was not made lightly and involved “a lot of discussion” according to Holt. He called installing the fence a last resort to protect the congregation and property from further vandalism.

In addition to drug paraphernalia and issues with individuals in the back of the church shooting up drugs, Holt said he’s found electrical panels had been tampered with in attempts to hard wire directly into the building’s electrical system. He also said multiple vehicles were broken into during a Sunday morning mass.

Along with new fencing, Holt said improvements will include a larger plaza in front of the church with better wheelchair accessibility. The project required city approval, due to the length of the fence being more than 200 feet.

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