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Sacred Places

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NEWS
May 31, 2005 | By A. Robert Jaeger and Charles B. Casper
We've seen it before, but it's no less shocking - the burned-out shell of a church building on the day after a major fire. Often we are looking at the church through the ragged tracery of a broken Gothic window, but instead of the sanctuary ceiling, we see the sky beyond. The latest example of this tragedy ? First Baptist Church of Conshohocken ? reminds us again that our sacred places are beautiful but vulnerable. A fire of that magnitude challenges our assumption that a building evoking the 13th century will, of course, make it through the 21st.
NEWS
December 25, 2005 | By Stephan Salisbury INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Perhaps it's not too much to hope that an umbrella won't be needed at Christmas Mass. Or a hard hat. Or a pew near a fire exit. Now, thanks to what its sponsors say is a unique new funding collaboration, five historic churches will receive major grants to attack building woes - woes that have forced congregations under umbrellas and into hard hats and toward fire exits. The Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission and nonprofit Partners for Sacred Places, a service organization, have put up $250,000 each to help the Philadelphia churches meet urgent structural needs.
NEWS
October 14, 2014 | By Jessica Parks, Inquirer Staff Writer
Weeks after completing its last round of parish mergers and closures, the Archdiocese of Philadelphia announced Sunday that 14 more parishes in Philadelphia, Montgomery, and Delaware Counties could be combined with nearby churches or shuttered. This time, the archdiocese is targeting three clusters of churches for cutbacks: In Delaware County's Springfield Township, the parishes of St. Francis of Assisi, Holy Cross, and St. Kevin. In Montgomery County, the parishes of St. Alphonsus in Maple Glen, St. Anthony of Padua and St. Joseph in Ambler, St. Catherine of Siena in Horsham, St. Genevieve in Flourtown, and Holy Martyrs in Oreland.
ENTERTAINMENT
November 8, 2011 | By Howard Shapiro, Inquirer Staff Writer
The city's newest stage officially opens Wednesday night in a Center City space with a high ceiling and 100 new seats. It doesn't even have a name yet. But already it has developed a pedigree. The theater, on a lower floor of First Baptist Church of Philadelphia at 17th and Sansom Streets, is the first success in a project called Arts in Sacred Places, a Philadelphia-based project that will match unused spaces in holy sites with the needs of arts groups looking for room to rehearse, keep offices, perform, exhibit, and even build sets and costumes.
NEWS
July 29, 2014 | By Inga Saffron, Inquirer Architecture Critic
Trinity Memorial Church at 22d and Spruce Streets was failing in the summer of 1994, and the few dozen remaining congregants knew it. They talked about selling off the oak pews, or even the chocolate-brown Victorian building itself, but the conversation kept going in circles. The members of the little Episcopal church just couldn't agree what to do. Then, in the midst of their collective soul-searching, the historic church and its congregation were saved, oddly enough, by a bolt of lightning.
NEWS
October 31, 1997 | By David O'Reilly, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Urban religious congregations are essential providers of community services, especially for the poorest of the poor, and need broad support from corporations, foundations and even government, according to a national study released here yesterday. Urban congregations typically operate four community service programs, serve four times more people than they have members, and provide $140,000 worth of services and meeting space to their neighborhoods, the Philadelphia-based Partners for Sacred Places reported in a new study: Sacred Places at Risk.
NEWS
September 2, 1998
Saving the buildings that help save communities Mark Alan Hughes and Anais Loizillon (Inquirer, Aug. 26) were right to call on religious leaders to protect the contribution that Philadelphia's fragile church and synagogue buildings make to their neighborhoods. Our research has shown that congregations provide an enormous subsidy that fuels countless day-care, feeding, after-school and job-training programs all across the region. We need an ecumenical approach that encourages suburban congregations to help their inner-city brethren keep sacred places going before they suffer further disrepair and dismemberment.
NEWS
January 12, 2012 | BY NATALIE POMPILIO, pompiln@phillynews.com 215-854-2595
THE REV. VINCENT SMITH was looking at the sky through one of the two gaping holes in the roof of Point Breeze's 19th Street Baptist Church and wondering when he could bring his congregation home. For the past five years, his 100 parishioners have worshipped in an adjoining building, forced to leave their sanctuary - designed by acclaimed architect Frank Furness and built in 1875 - because of the roof and other structural problems. "It can be a little discouraging to some.
ENTERTAINMENT
November 7, 2008 | By Victoria Donohoe FOR THE INQUIRER
Archaeology left a lasting imprint on the arts of the 1980s in America and Europe, and Claus Mroczynski's photographs of awesome prehistoric American Indian habitats in the Southwest capture a strong sense of that interest. The Michener Museum recognizes the important legacy of this late, outstanding German-born New Hope photographer with the exhibit "Claus Mroczynski: Sacred Places of the Southwest" at its New Hope location. The 46 featured black and white photos represent 18 years spent, starting in the mid-1980s, constantly traveling back and forth from New Hope to remote sacred grounds of ancient Indians in Utah, Arizona, Colorado and New Mexico.
NEWS
July 9, 2014 | By Bonnie L. Cook, Inquirer Staff Writer
James Gordon Winkler, 62, of Bala Cynwyd, a Philadelphia architect and bluegrass music lover, died Tuesday, July 1, of cancer at his home. Mr. Winkler's passion was architecture and design. "He believed in the power of good design to influence the vitality of cities, and in the preservation of buildings as a connection to the past," said his wife, Marion "Mimi" Converse Winkler, also an architect. He also enjoyed mentoring the next generation of architects. Mr. Winkler was raised in North Wilkesboro, in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina.
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NEWS
January 13, 2015 | BY DAN GERINGER, Daily News Staff Writer geringd@phillynews.com, 215-854-5961
LIKE SO MANY churches that have closed in recent years, South Philly's massive Shiloh Baptist Church, built in 1870, has a small congregation burdened with huge repair bills, which is not a recipe for survival. But the Victorian-era church on Christian Street near 21st, one of the city's oldest African-American Baptist congregations, found two unlikely Earth angels. Shiloh Baptist rents its soaring second-floor spaces to Brat Productions, an edgy rock 'n' roll cabaret troupe, and to Brian Sanders' JUNK Dance Company, which choreographs around stuff that Sanders trash-picks on Philadelphia streets.
NEWS
October 14, 2014 | By Jessica Parks, Inquirer Staff Writer
Weeks after completing its last round of parish mergers and closures, the Archdiocese of Philadelphia announced Sunday that 14 more parishes in Philadelphia, Montgomery, and Delaware Counties could be combined with nearby churches or shuttered. This time, the archdiocese is targeting three clusters of churches for cutbacks: In Delaware County's Springfield Township, the parishes of St. Francis of Assisi, Holy Cross, and St. Kevin. In Montgomery County, the parishes of St. Alphonsus in Maple Glen, St. Anthony of Padua and St. Joseph in Ambler, St. Catherine of Siena in Horsham, St. Genevieve in Flourtown, and Holy Martyrs in Oreland.
NEWS
July 29, 2014 | By Inga Saffron, Inquirer Architecture Critic
Trinity Memorial Church at 22d and Spruce Streets was failing in the summer of 1994, and the few dozen remaining congregants knew it. They talked about selling off the oak pews, or even the chocolate-brown Victorian building itself, but the conversation kept going in circles. The members of the little Episcopal church just couldn't agree what to do. Then, in the midst of their collective soul-searching, the historic church and its congregation were saved, oddly enough, by a bolt of lightning.
NEWS
July 9, 2014 | By Bonnie L. Cook, Inquirer Staff Writer
James Gordon Winkler, 62, of Bala Cynwyd, a Philadelphia architect and bluegrass music lover, died Tuesday, July 1, of cancer at his home. Mr. Winkler's passion was architecture and design. "He believed in the power of good design to influence the vitality of cities, and in the preservation of buildings as a connection to the past," said his wife, Marion "Mimi" Converse Winkler, also an architect. He also enjoyed mentoring the next generation of architects. Mr. Winkler was raised in North Wilkesboro, in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina.
NEWS
April 7, 2014 | By Ronnie Polaneczky, Daily News Columnist
ANOTHER YEAR, and the feisty members of Fishtown's St. Laurentius Catholic Church are going toe-to-toe again with their oft-nemesis, the Philadelphia Archdiocese. First came word in 2012 that the archdiocese would shutter the parish school, even though its enrollment was increasing. A fight ensued, led by passionate well-organized parish families, and St. Laurentius prevailed (the school is doing well, by the way.) Then the archdiocese announced in 2013 that St. Laurentius would merge its parish operations into Holy Name Church, a few blocks away.
NEWS
January 12, 2012 | BY NATALIE POMPILIO, pompiln@phillynews.com 215-854-2595
THE REV. VINCENT SMITH was looking at the sky through one of the two gaping holes in the roof of Point Breeze's 19th Street Baptist Church and wondering when he could bring his congregation home. For the past five years, his 100 parishioners have worshipped in an adjoining building, forced to leave their sanctuary - designed by acclaimed architect Frank Furness and built in 1875 - because of the roof and other structural problems. "It can be a little discouraging to some.
ENTERTAINMENT
November 8, 2011 | By Howard Shapiro, Inquirer Staff Writer
The city's newest stage officially opens Wednesday night in a Center City space with a high ceiling and 100 new seats. It doesn't even have a name yet. But already it has developed a pedigree. The theater, on a lower floor of First Baptist Church of Philadelphia at 17th and Sansom Streets, is the first success in a project called Arts in Sacred Places, a Philadelphia-based project that will match unused spaces in holy sites with the needs of arts groups looking for room to rehearse, keep offices, perform, exhibit, and even build sets and costumes.
ENTERTAINMENT
November 7, 2008 | By Victoria Donohoe FOR THE INQUIRER
Archaeology left a lasting imprint on the arts of the 1980s in America and Europe, and Claus Mroczynski's photographs of awesome prehistoric American Indian habitats in the Southwest capture a strong sense of that interest. The Michener Museum recognizes the important legacy of this late, outstanding German-born New Hope photographer with the exhibit "Claus Mroczynski: Sacred Places of the Southwest" at its New Hope location. The 46 featured black and white photos represent 18 years spent, starting in the mid-1980s, constantly traveling back and forth from New Hope to remote sacred grounds of ancient Indians in Utah, Arizona, Colorado and New Mexico.
NEWS
May 19, 2006 | By Stephan Salisbury INQUIRER CULTURE WRITER
The bell is old and heavy, its wooden supports weak and flagging. But that's only one building problem faced by historic St. Mary's Church, an 1873 neo-Gothic building on the University of Pennsylvania campus. The roof is in need of repair. The stained glass needs restoration. And the masonry is not in the best of shape. "There are holes throughout the entire facility," Alison Williams, church administrator, said with a sigh. But St. Mary's also has a plan for repairs and a great desire to preserve both its building and an ambitious cluster of community programs.
NEWS
December 25, 2005 | By Stephan Salisbury INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Perhaps it's not too much to hope that an umbrella won't be needed at Christmas Mass. Or a hard hat. Or a pew near a fire exit. Now, thanks to what its sponsors say is a unique new funding collaboration, five historic churches will receive major grants to attack building woes - woes that have forced congregations under umbrellas and into hard hats and toward fire exits. The Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission and nonprofit Partners for Sacred Places, a service organization, have put up $250,000 each to help the Philadelphia churches meet urgent structural needs.
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