Monday, January 10, 2011

Gesu Catholic Church, Miami

Growing from a small wooden church in 1896, years before Miami was even founded, to an 800 seat church located at North East First Avenue and Second Street, the Gesu Catholic Church boasts altars such as this main one made of Italian marble and polychromed crystal leaded windows made in Germany. The Gesu Catholic Church was originally founded by William and Evelyn Wagner, who purchased several acres of land at another location, where the first church was built. Services were held here until 1889, when a fire destroyed the building. Two years later, Henry Flagler, on behalf of Joseph and Catherine MacDonald, donated land for a new Catholic church to be built, even though he was a Protestant. The Gesu Catholic Church prides itself on welcoming soldiers as they return from foreign wars and educating exiles from Haiti, Nicaragua and Cuba.

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