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Friday, December 08, 2006

Little Church Around the Corner

The Church of the Transfiguration is one of the most famous parishes of the Episcopal Church in the United States, known throughout the country as "The Little Church Around the Corner." For 150 years it has been a very visible worshiping community in an urban setting that has welcomed all classes, all races, and particularly all those marginalized by society for whatever reason, as were actors and actresses, who had theretofore been on the fringes of both society and the Episcopal Church. It also has stressed service to the poor and oppressed from its earliest days. The founder, Dr. Houghton sponsored bread lines and worked vigorously for the abolition of slavery and harbored runaway slaves. In 1870, when the rector of a neighboring church refused to perform a funeral for an actor name George Holland, he suggested the "little church around the corner" where "they do that sort of thing." Fellow actor Joseph Jefferson who was trying to arrange Holland's burial, exclaimed "God bless the little church around the corner!" and the church began a long standing association with people of the theater. For more information including a history, I direct you to their site. The church, at 1 E. 29th Street was built in 1849. The church is set back behind a garden - the atmosphere is one of an English parish church in the countryside. Currently, the property is undergoing extensive renovations. More photos here... 

5 comments:

susan in atlanta said...

Brian,

What an absolutely gorgeous photo! I had not heard of this church. I love the golden hue and the woodwork! I've never seen a church that looks quite like that.

ruth said...

It's a beautiful church for anyone, and I love hearing that folks who were unwelcome elsewhere were welcome here. It makes it much more beautiful.

walter said...

What a fantastic interior! A well kept NYC secret.

Curly said...

Brian,

what a fantastic and meaningful post, the picture is quite magnificent and the history behind it is quite profound. Long may the church's traditions survive!

Curly's Photoshop

Kathleen said...

This is a beautiful church. My parents were married here and today would have been their 59th wedding anniversary.