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Mercy House Of The Southern Tier Is Unveiled

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By Brianna Case.
A facility was re-born today in Endicott on Sunday. After hard work, former St. Casimir's church is now Mercy House of the Southern Tier. It's the first home like this in the area.

"This was their worshiping building and at least their presence will live on and their mission will live on as well," said Father Clarence, Founder of the Mercy House.

The mission is to create something special for those that are terminally ill.

"We are about creating a home-like environment for the terminally ill so they can die with dignity and experience the unconditional love of God," said Anthony Paniccia, President of Mercy House.

This mission hit home for Father Clarence. That is part of the reason why he founded Mercy House.

"Fifteen years ago my aunt was in Frances House in Syracuse, which we modeled the Mercy House after the Frances House. It was such a wonderful experience with my aunt and for the family and it really provided us, it allowed her to die with dignity," said Father Clarence.

Those working at the Mercy House are trying their best to make it as comfortable as they can for when residents come in here. They are adding home-like qualities with quilting and rocking chairs.

"It's a family like environment. There's a kitchen, there's a living room, there's a dinning room and a bedroom. It's just like being at home," said Paniccia.

Those that came out to support the grand opening agreed

"The rooms are beautiful, the quilts, I mean, if anyone comes here they are going to be at home and their family will love being with them," said Tony Strines, Endwell resident.

"I think they will be good for the people there because it will make them feel like they are at home," said Lauren Bricker, Endicott resident.

The Mercy House hopes make the experience special for the residents, and their families too.

"A couple people and a quilting club as well made all of the quilts for all of the rooms and their wish is when a person passes that the quilt will be given to the family," said Father Clarence.

Lourdes of Hospice will be choosing Mercy House residents as well as assist in care taking. It's another difference being made in the community.