Basilica of St. Jospahat
Every year thousands flock to magnificent Basilica of St. Josaphat located on the Historic South Side of Milwaukee. In 1896 the parish priest purchased 200,000 tons of stone, doors, hardware and fittings from the demolished Chicago Post Office and Customs House for the construction of the Basilica, which became the spiritual center for the city’s growing Polish Catholic population. Some of the ornamental brass hardware still bears the U.S. Treasury seal and carved capitals atop the portico’s columns contain American eagles. The Basilica is more splendid than ever after refurbishments and cleaning were completed in recent years. The copper dome is one of the largest in the country.
ST. MARK AFRICAN METHODIST EPISCOPAL CHURCH
Known as A.M.E. for short, the St. Mark African Methodist Episcopal was the first African American church established in Milwaukee by Ezekiel Gillespie. Also referred to as the “Church of the Anvil,” the first A.M.E. church service was held in a blacksmith shop. The anvil serves as a symbol and expression of the history and faith of the congregation. This is the oldest African-American congregation in Wisconsin.
ANNUNCIATION GREEK ORTHODOX CHURCH
One of Frank Lloyd Wright’s last commissions and completed in 1961 after his death, Annunciation Green Orthodox Church’s unique “saucer-shaped” design is a Milwaukee landmark.
ST. JOAN OF ARC CHAPEL
For more than five centuries, the special little Gothic chapel known as the Chapelle de St. Martin de Sayssuel was important to the noble families of the little French village of Chasse near Lyon. The only medieval structure in the entire Western Hemisphere, the St. Joan of Arc Chapel was moved stone by stone from Chasse, France, to New York in 1927, and later moved to the Marquette University campus in downtown Milwaukee in 1966. It’s rumored that Joan of Arc once kissed a stone after praying here, and that to this day it remains colder to the touch than the surrounding stones. The chapel is believed to be the oldest building in the United States still used for its original purpose.
The Basilica of the NATIONAL SHRINE OF MARY, HELP OF CHRISTIANS, at Holy Hill
This venerated Wisconsin landmark just northwest of Milwaukee is often known simply as “Holy Hill” to locals and some 500,000 annual visitors. The red brick, neo-Romanesque church with its twin spires was built on a hill rising 1,350 feet above sea level, one of the highest elevations in southeastern Wisconsin, and features a panoramic view of the rolling countryside. Discalced Carmelite Friars operate the shrine and welcome busloads of the faithful on pilgrimages from around the world. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, Holy Hill celebrated its proudest moment on November 19, 2006, when Pope Benedict XVI elevated the shrine’s status to that of “Minor Basilica.”