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First Saint Paul's Evangelical Lutheran Church

Address

1301 N. LaSalle Dr.
Enter on Goethe

Neighborhood

Old Town

Hours

Sat, Oct 19: 11am - 5pm

Sun, Oct 20: 12pm - 5pm

Photography Permitted Washrooms Available Wheelchair Accessible

Architect

Edward Dart, 1970

Website

fspauls.org

Description

First St. Paul's was established just seven years after Chicago's founding. The church called six different buildings home before arriving at its current location designed by noted Modernist Edward Dart. In 1847, the church hosted the founding convention of the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod. The space is spare but highly symbolic. There is no ornamentation to divert attention from the most important focal points: the pulpit, the Communion table and the Baptismal font. The sanctuary uses simple yet refined materials. The sweeping chancel wall of perforated Chicago common brick is dramatically illuminated by a high, hidden clerestory window that admits light without the distractions of the outside world. A statue of an angel stands in the church lounge. It is a remnant of the much more elaborate 1864 building that was destroyed by the Great Chicago Fire of 1871.

Visitor Experience

Bask in the quiet simplicity of this masterful Modernist church.