JOPLIN, Mo. -- When Mercy's new hospital opens in Joplin, it will showcase a long list of state-of-the-art features, but it will also draw a strong connection to the past.
The former St. Johns Hospital was destroyed in the May, 2011 Joplin tornado.
"We found the old cross that was on the very top of the first Mercy building here in town, actually the first Mercy hospital," says Mercy Vice President of Mission Joel James.
It now sits at 100 Mercy Way, on the south side of the new hospital near the cancer center. Not far away are some figures patients will find very familiar.
"Most of the statues that you see came from the old hospital as well as there are some very subtle things throughout the hospital," James says. "We actually re-purposed some of the stained glass that was destroyed. We got it, we had it embedded into the walkway area. Those are just things we did to kind of continue our history through our experience here."
Many of the patient rooms will feature crucifixes first used at the old St. John's Regional Medical Center site. It's a theme repeated over and over throughout the hospital in art, windows and the architecture itself.
"We have what we call the lantern that feeds into the gallery. And the lantern was specifically designed to be a symmetrical window so it would emphasize the cross structure. And that has to do with our history because Catherine McAuley, she didn't have crosses.
And she would find crosses in either nature or in the architecture of the windows," James says.
The new Mercy hospital opens in March.
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