Our Lady of Las Palomas Interfaith Center
"Dedicated To Giving The Disadvantaged A Hand Up"
Retreats & Special Events
Cooperative/La Coopertiva de la Frontera
A small adobe building with a simple
arched patio built around an old house trailer in Columbus, New Mexico
inspired Richard and Edith Haines with a vision of an interfaith chapel.
purchased the property in 1981 and began the renovation in 1985 with the
help of many local people who donated materials and hours of labor.
The Early Years - The Evelyn Haines Memorial Chapel
The Evelyn Haines Memorial Chapel was open for worship by any
demonination. It was available for weddings, funerals, and memorial
services. The chapel has a registered private cemetary. It was privately
owed by Dick and Edith Haines who accepted no financial help.
The Dedication of Saint Antony of the Desert Chapel
On October 4, 1987, the Feast of St. Francis of Assisi, the chapel was
dedicated. The Rt. Rev. Richard M. Trelease Jr., D. D. Bishop of the
Episcopal Diocese of Rio Grande presided over the dedication of Saint
Anthony of the Desert.
The Rev. Montney held Episcopal services at the chapel until ill health
prevented her continued ministry. Homer Gillette conducted services
until his retirement. Father William Haller of Deming
came to the Columbus
chapel for Orthodox services.
Rededication as St Francis of Assisi Orthodox Mission
The Chapel was rededicated as an Orthodox mission and Father Haller took
up residence. Father Haller donated the altar, lectern, baptismal font,
and tabernacle. He served there until his death in 1990. He is buried at
After Father Haller's death James Franklin of
Columbus conducted interfaith Sunday Services.
and Edith Haines, with Ken
and John and The
Rev. Vicki Montney at the first
service at St. Anthony in the Desert.
In 2000 Edith and Richard Haines gave the Chapel and
Twelve lots to Kris and Judith Lethin. The Lethin's then gifted the
property to Our Lady of Las Palomas Hermitage and Retreat Center a
501(c)3 nonprofit corporation. The Lethin's want to see the property
developed into a interfaith spiritual and humanitarian center.
In December 2007 Edith Haines gifted sufficient funds
for Our Lady of Las Palomas to acquire the adjacent six lots and house
next door to add to the Retreat Center and its development.