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Chicago Embassy Church (St. Martin of Tours)

Address

5848 S. Princeton Ave.

Neighborhood

Englewood

Hours

Sat, Oct 15: 9am - 5pm

Sun, Oct 16: 2pm - 5pm

Photography Permitted Wheelchair Accessible

Architect

Henry J. Schlacks, 1895

Description

With a 230-foot spire that's visible for blocks, this church was originally built by German Catholics and was as ornate inside as out. The Archdiocese closed the parish in 1989, and the building fell into disrepair over the ensuing decade. Chicago Embassy Church moved in in 1998—stabilizing the building and adapting it to their needs. The interior is grand but spare. Damaged ornament has given way to exposed brick and plain white plaster. Not needing the full length of the sanctuary, the new owners innovatively partitioned off several meeting and other rooms in the back. A large gilded statue of St. Martin of Tours on horseback once graced the roof of the church, but unfortunately it was toppled and destroyed by a windstorm in 2007.

Behind the Scenes

Step inside this towering church to see how the grand sanctuary was saved and renovated for use by a different congregation.