Salvaged Chapel wood becomes display case for The St. John’ s Bible
BY Pauline Oo
STAN ASBELL HAS BEEN A CARPENTER for 37 years, but this is the first time he's built a display case for a giant Bible. St. Kate's Heritage Edition of The Saint John's Bible — comprising seven distinct volumes —
weighs over 350 pounds, and measures two feet tall and three feet wide when open. Each volume will have a turn
in the case that Asbell built with wood salvaged from a kneeler and confessional in Our Lady of Victory Chapel.
"This project was challenging and fun," says Asbell, one of three carpenters on staff at St. Kate's. When you reuse wood, there are slight imperfections,
like little scratches or nicks, but I think that makes this stand unique and gives it more of an antique look.”
The Bible is a gift from Lois Rogers SP'63 and her husband, John. It is one of 299 fine-art reproductions of the original, a handwritten and illuminated Bible crafted
in medieval tradition. To protect it from environmental damage, including light and temperature fluctuations, each page will be publicly displayed for only a few days.
The display case is located in the lower-level atrium of Coeur de Catherine on the St. Paul campus.
Asbell sought advice “from a lot of people” during the building process, including carpenters Jerry Beckman and Jim Fincel; the trio's supervisor, Joseph
Pallansch; and Jim Manship, director of facilities management. "Once I cut the wood, that was it," Asbell says. "I had to get it right the first time.”