Catholic Ecology Center Exterior

Specialty: Multi-Use Building – Chapel & Education Center

Catholic Ecology Center

Neosho, WI • Completed 2024

The Catholic Ecology Center’s new 3,500 sq. ft. addition embodies a forward-thinking approach to environmental stewardship and sustainability. Noteworthy exterior elements include a geothermal heating and cooling system, green roof, and solar panels. The solar panels that will power 80 percent of the building’s electricity. The green roof is designed to absorb up to 70 percent of rainfall. This not only reduces runoff but also helps to mitigate the urban heat island effect, contributing to a cooler, more sustainable environment. Complementing this is a sophisticated “gray-water system” that ingeniously repurposes water from bathroom sinks, water fountains, and laundry machines. This recycled water is used to irrigate a native pollinator rain garden, fostering local biodiversity and reducing the need for fresh water.


In keeping with its commitment to sustainability, the addition was built with recycled and locally sourced materials. By using lumber certified by the Forest Stewardship Council, the project ensures that the wood is harvested in an environmentally responsible and socially beneficial manner. This approach not only reduces the carbon footprint associated with transportation but also supports local economies and promotes sustainable forestry practices.


The new chapel is a beautiful blend of history and conservation. Featuring stained-glass windows reclaimed from a church in Connecticut and a Communion rail dating back to the early 1900s from St. John Parish in Rubicon, the chapel is a testament to the value of preserving and repurposing historical artifacts. Through careful material selection, waste was reduced, creating a space that blends tradition with a sense of ongoing legacy. This seamless connection bridges the gap between the past and present in a meaningful and environmentally friendly way.

An observation deck on the rear side of the existing building offers expansive views of the 60-acre property

The Center’s Executive Director Joe Meyer was named a Notable Leader in Sustainability in 2023 by BizTimes Milwaukee.

Catholic Ecology Center Sustainability Details
Catholic Ecology Center Raving Fan

Working with the great team at MSI allowed our building project to run as smooth as possible. They went the extra mile to ensure our building would serve our mission well into the future.

Joe Meyer, Executive Director