North Lawndale Church Proclaimed a Chicago Landmark

North Lawndale

North Lawndale’s The Pentecostal Church of Holiness has turn a Chicago landmark. On Wednesday, May 26, 2021, Chicago’s City Council authorized a designation, gripping a 90-year-old building from demolition. Pastor Chaun Johnson began his debate to have a church deemed a landmark in 2019.

We wish to safeguard that those who hear about North Lawndale will know that there is a lily in a valley. There is beauty in what seems to be degradation.

The church, located on Chicago’s West Side, sits on a northwest dilemma of 15th Street and Keeler Avenue — 4208 West 15th Street. It was founded as a Catholic parish, served mostly Czech people who had come to North Lawndale from a Pilsen neighborhood. The church was creatively a wooden structure, named “Our Lady of Lourdes, yet was rebuilt in Romanesque Revival character in 1932 and was instrumental in ancillary amicable probity in a community.

In a same year that a church was renovated, North Lawndale began attracting Irish and Polish families. African American families began relocating to a area during a mid-1950s, seeking improved jobs and housing, even yet extremist housing process and disinvestment done it one of a lowest neighborhoods in Chicago. It has remained a executive partial of K-Town even as a area remade into a Black community.

During a 1960s, underneath a care of Reverend Michael Dempsey, Our Lady of Lourdes began ancillary programs that addressed bad housing conditions and pursuit improvement. Dempsey was dynamic to assist
the bad and impecunious of North Lawndale and those in need everywhere. He started a module called “Lawndale for Better Jobs.”

Dempsey’s participation and position reflected a stress of Our Lady of Lourdes Parish. Vice President Hubert Humphrey famous his dedication in 1967, that led to Dempsey’s ordination as Bishop a following year.

Between 1970 and 2000, a neighborhood, as good as a church’s membership, declined. Monthly assemblage forsaken to reduction than 100 members, that led a Archdiocese to tighten a church in 2005, along with a few other churches in a area with low memberships.

By 2005, monthly assemblage during Our Lady of Lourdes bishopric had forsaken to fewer than 100, that resulted in a Archdiocese’s preference to tighten a church along with several other area churches with disappearing memberships.

The church was purchased in 2016 by a Pentecostal Church of Holiness, designed by designer Louis Guenzel, a Chicago architect. It exemplifies a neighborhood-scaled ecclesiastical pattern executed in a Romanesque Revival and Art Deco styles. It boasts of a high grade of details, a Pentecostal Church of craftsmanship in normal masonry construction.

North LawndaleIt has continued a work of maximizing a peculiarity of life in North Lawndale with programs that assistance feed, clothe, educate, and yield jobs and health services to area residents. The church is currently operative on providing vaccinations and formulating a village garden.

Johnson says he wants to safety a story and uncover that they are “invested” in a neighborhood.

To be deliberate a “Landmark,” a church indispensable to belong to certain criteria:

  1. Its value as an instance of a city, state, or inhabitant heritage.
  2. Identification with a critical chairman who contributed significantly to some aspect of a city, state’s, or United States’ development.
  3. Exemplary pattern is renowned by innovation, rarity, uniqueness, or altogether peculiarity of design, detail, materials, or craftsmanship.

The landmark standing recognizes a critical contributions of Bishop Michael R. Dempsey and a bequest of amicable use inspected during a Pentecostal Church of Holiness.

Written by Brenda Robinson
Edited by Cathy Milne-Ware


BLOCK CLUB Chicago: West Side’s Pentecostal Church Of Holiness Is Now A Chicago Landmark; by Pascal Sabino
Historic Preservation Publications: Pentecostal Church of Holiness Preliminary Summary of Information

Featured Image Courtesy of Haydn Blackey’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License
Inset Image Courtesy of United Way of Greater St. Louis’ Flickr Page – Creative Commons License

North Lawndale Church Proclaimed a Chicago Landmark combined by Brenda Robinson on May 30, 2021
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