Editor's note: Joe Becker continues his report on the natural-stone segment of the St. Joseph Cathedral restoration in Sioux Falls, S.D.

As a blogger, I probably committed the number-one sin bloggers can commit: I didn’t blog for awhile. Other things took greater priority and – to be honest – there wasn’t much new being done at the project.

True, every floor stone being put in further expanded the seamless expanse of marble paving started seven months ago and every wall-stone installed covered the old brick that was the last stronghold of the century-old original construction, but we’ve been watching this for progress for months.

The only thing new for us would be completion of phase I ... and that’s where we are. Al and the guys finished virtually all stone work on Nov. 4 on phase I, except for some door frames and marble floor grilles still being made. After two weeks of work in late, we’ll be off until late January 2011. when the first container containing phase II arrives.

The marble floor will be carefully cleaned and covered by Sioux Falls Construction to preserve the newly installed floor. Next time we’ll see the floor will be June or July of next year.

For the next couple of months my blog will be focused mainly on where all the action is at -- over in Italy at Italmarble Pocai, where the creation of phase II marble is in full gear. Keep in touch, as this story is far from over.

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Curtis Nelson installs a Fior de Pesco wall panel at the large nave structural columns. Also pictured is the two-piece Arabescato Vagli marble column base that sits directly atop the panels.





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Tile finishers cleaning and grouting the marble floor in the narthex.



And there's more on page 2 ....