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Sacred Places

NEWS
November 17, 2004 | By Jim Remsen INQUIRER FAITH LIFE EDITOR
A historic Center City church has placed a masterpiece sculpture for sale on the open market after efforts to sell it to the Philadelphia Museum of Art for more than $2 million fell short. The large marble relief, called Angel of Purity, was created by Augustus Saint-Gaudens, who is considered the most important American sculptor of the 19th century. It was installed in 1902 at St. Stephen's Episcopal Church after grieving parents commissioned it as a memorial to their daughter, who had died of diphtheria.
NEWS
April 26, 2007 | By A. ROBERT JAEGER & JOHN J. DIIULIO JR
PRAYER MIGHT not save the Phillies season. But it takes no leap of faith to believe that Philly's churches, synagogues, mosques and other religious congregations spread hope by helping needy fellow citizens of every faith - and no faith. In a new book, "The Other Philadelphia Story," Penn professor Ram Cnaan documents that our city's over-1,000 congregations supply many social services: food pantries, summer day camps, clothing closets, drug and alcohol prevention, neighborhood cleanup, job counseling and placement, computer training, mentoring, health screening, crime watch, prison ministry, after-school programs, welfare-to-work programs, and scores of others.
NEWS
August 7, 2004 | By Murray Dubin INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
The gray limestone and sandstone steeple that stood as a towering Christian sentinel over Chestnut Street for nearly 120 years will be rebuilt, leaders of Christ Memorial Church announced yesterday. When the restoration will begin or how long it will take is unclear, but it will likely cost millions, church leaders said. The 170-foot-high steeple collapsed Tuesday night, showering slabs of stone on 43d Street. No was seriously hurt. "We are very grateful that this catastrophe was not compounded by the loss of life," said the Rev. Michael Fitzpatrick, rector of the Grace Reformed Episcopal Church in Collingdale, a sister church that will hold Sunday services for congregants of the temporarily closed West Philadelphia church.
NEWS
January 30, 2012 | BY JOSEPH P. TIERNEY
THE DECLINE of the Philadelphia region's Catholic school system is old news. In Philly alone, the Archdiocese now plans to close 18 elementary schools and two high schools. But between 2000 and 2010, the city lost 23 Catholic grade schools and two Catholic high schools, and total enrollments in Philly Catholic schools fell from about 50,000 to around 30,000. The city's public charter schools have more students than its Catholic schools. The decline would have been even steeper were it not for the influx of non-Catholic students - who are a quarter of the city's Catholic grade-school enrollment - and the tens of millions of dollars pumped into the Catholic school system by the Children's Scholarship Fund of Philadelphia, Business Leaders Organized for Catholic Schools and numerous family foundations and individual philanthropists.
NEWS
March 14, 2004 | By Jim Remsen
A Catholic past is giving way to a Baptist future at 1648 Hunting Park Ave. The shuttered stone edifice of St. Ladislaus Roman Catholic Church, whose twin spires and rose window have graced the Nicetown neighborhood for nearly a century, is about to be demolished by its new owner, the nearby Triumph Baptist Church. St. Ladislaus was a Polish-nationality parish that had nurtured generations of working-class families after the towering Gothic church opened in 1906. But the active membership withered as people moved out of the neighborhood, and the Archdiocese of Philadelphia closed the church in April, putting its two-acre complex of buildings up for sale.
NEWS
March 11, 2011 | By Inga Saffron, Inquirer Architecture Critic
The Church of the Assumption gets its final shot at redemption Monday. That's when the Callowhill Neighborhood Association will make a last-ditch appeal to Philadelphia building officials to halt the planned demolition of the landmark Spring Garden Street church where the Catholic saint Katharine Drexel was baptized. As hopeless causes go, the Assumption's chances look better than most. Not only does the ocher-colored church have a skilled and determined neighborhood group in its corner, it has the good fortune to be located in a reviving neighborhood, a brisk 10-minute walk from City Hall.
NEWS
May 20, 2005 | By Burlington B. Latshaw
Throughout its 250-year history, Pottstown has been a town of churches. Many of them are magnificent historic structures of stone and brick dating back a century or more, giving our town its unique character and identity. Fifty years ago, these churches were thriving community centers that built spacious social halls and classrooms to accommodate growing Sunday school enrollments. More recently, however, as Pottstown congregations have aged and downsized with the middle-class migration to the suburbs, many of these spaces have become underused and difficult to maintain.
NEWS
March 28, 2000 | by Ron Goldwyn, Daily News Staff Writer
Pope John Paul II's pilgrimage to the Holy Land was a hit on both sides of North 17th Street yesterday. As the tired but elated pontiff returned to Rome the kudos poured in worldwide, with many (but not all) Jewish leaders leading the chorus. That was true at the Rabbinical Assembly of several hundred Conservative Jewish rabbis at the Wyndham Franklin Plaza, and equally so across 17th at the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. The pope has done more to mend Jewish-Catholic relations than any predecessor, "maybe more for Jews than all the other popes combined," said Rabbi Andrew Sachs, a Philadelphia native and longtime leader of the Masorti (Conservative)
NEWS
February 26, 1991 | By Carol Rosenberg, Inquirer Gulf Staff
Even as he seemingly gave way before the allied ground assault, there were signs early today that President Saddam Hussein was trying to shape the terms of his defeat and ensure his survival as the leader of Iraq. To be sure, the surprise statement on Baghdad Radio declaring that Iraqi troops had been ordered to retreat from Kuwait seemed a bitter pill for Hussein. But the circumstances showed efforts by the Iraqi president to make it sweeter. For example, the broadcast attributed the announcement to an official Iraqi spokesman, not to Hussein himself.
NEWS
August 14, 1987 | By PAUL BAKER, Daily News Staff Writer
If you live near the Art Museum, don't be alarmed if the brass handles on your dresser begin to shake or your breakfast dishes start to rattle at 6:30 a.m. Monday. An earthquake won't have hit town. Instead, your life will be "ahum" from the chants of some 10,000 people proclaiming from the steps of the Art Museum their belief in the Harmonic Convergence. The convergence is a two-day period that is the center point of the Earth's shift from the astrological Piscean Age to the Aquarian Age - from unenlightenment to enlightenment - according to Swami Virato, a local publisher and coordinator of the Philadelphia area's "convergence" movement.
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