National Register of Historic Places Inventory - Grace Evangelical Lutheran Church
Creator: United States Department of the Interior National Park Service
Subjects: Historic Designation, Corporate Records
Description: Description of interior and exterior religious sculptures of Grace Evangelical Lutheran Church. Also commonly known as Prayer Temple of Love Cathedral. Located at 12375 Woodward Avenue at Highland in Highland Park, Michigan.
Original Format: Other
Rights Management: Grace Evangelical Lutheran Church
Contributor: Carlton Rolle
Transcript: The structure is located at the southwest corner of Woodward Avenue at Highland and measure 100 feet in length and 75 feet in width. The church is a relatively small, random ashlar, sandstone, Neo-Gothic-style structure built in 1929-30. It is typically Gothic in plan with a tall, gabled nave with lower side aisles extending back to gabled transepts. Shallow buttresses flank the arched entrance surmounted by a large, traceried, Gothic window. The most striking feature of the design is the massive, square, Pat-roofed tower with louvered belfry which looms over the crossing where the nave meets the transepts. Almost totally devoid of carved ornament, the structure depends for effect upon its bold massing and the contrast in texture between the honey-colored planes of smooth masonry and the rough, dark slate roof.
Adjoining the rear of the church is the cross-gabled, Victorian Gothic structure which served the congregation until the present building was erected. A towerless, frame structure, it is now clad in asphalt siding. The complex also contains a two- story, early twentieth-century, brick parsonage with a hip roof.
Specific dates: 1929-30
Architect: J. Adam Fichter (1889-1950) of Milwaukee
Grace Evangelical Lutheran Church originated as a mission church of the westside Detroit Immanuel Evangelical Lutheran Church. The original frame Victorian Gothic chapel was built for the Highland Park Presbyterian congregation and was originally located a block south. It was moved from a site on Cortland in 1903 and served as this congregation's first home of worship. The present stone, Neo-Gothic, limestone building was built in 1929-30. The architect, J. Adam Fichter, was a strong admirer of the Boston firm of Cram, Goodhue and Ferguson. In 1979, Grace Evangelical congregation sold their church building to an Apostolic black congregation, and the church is now known as the Prayer Temple of Love Cathedral. The 1929-30 Grace Church is a well preserved, locally significant example of the Neo-Gothic movement in church architecture.