Modern Churches – St. Basil’s Church on Wilshire Boulevard, Los Angeles, California


St. Basil's Church, Wilshire Boulevard, Los Angeles, California
St. Basil’s Church, Wilshire Boulevard, Los Angeles, California

Contemporary Churches – St. Basil’s Church on Wilshire Boulevard, Los Angeles, California

In 1919, there was a requirement for a new parish among Catholics west of Hoover Street. Bishop John Cantwell designed St. Basil Parish on November 26, 1919. Albert C. Martin was invited to draw up plans for the church and, on May 12, 1920. the pastor signed a contract with the builder, Edward C. English, to complete the church in 75 working days. The formal dedication of the newly constructed St. Basil Church took place on Sunday, November 21, 1920, with Bishop Cantwell presiding. The church was badly damaged by a fire In October 1943 and it was subsequently rebuilt.

In August 1965, Msgr. Gross announced preliminary plans to build a new 40,000-square-foot (3,700 m2) complex at the corner of Wilshire Boulevard and Kingsley Drive.  The Albert C. Martin Architectural Company designed this new vision and The Pozzo Construction Company constructed the new St. Basil Church. The church remained under construction from 1967 to 1969. The St. Basil’s Parish Church, as we know it today, was opened on June 26, 1969. In 1969 and 1970, the church was the site of pickets and demonstrations by Chicano Movement protesters who objected to the archdiocese’s expenditure of substantial funds on construction of the new church rather than on the poor and social justice programs.

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