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Former parishioners open church time capsule

Five coins and several newspapers dating more than 100 years ago were among items unveiled Aug. 30 in a time capsule placed in the cornerstone of the former St. Patrick Church in Omaha.

Several newspapers from 1910, a Knights of Columbus magazine and a list of priests of the archdiocese also were enclosed in the copper container – found recently by workers as they demolished the church that closed in 2014 and will be replaced by low-income and other housing.

More than a dozen people gathered for the unveiling, said Steve LaGreca, a former St. Patrick parishioner, now a member of Immaculate Conception Parish in Omaha.

"The anticipation of it was something," LaGreca said. "I looked around the room and everybody was ‘wow, I can’t wait.’"

Plans are to add contemporary items and place them with the old material back in the time capsule. Perhaps it can be part of preserving the memories of the former St. Patrick Parish, which has merged with nearby St. Frances Cabrini Parish, LaGreca said.

While people can go to microfiche and other records of past events, being present with material dating that far back was exciting, LaGreca said.

"It’s the fact that no one has seen these in 106 years," he said.