Emotional last mass at Polish church in Chicago

St. Adalbert's Church in Chicago held its last official mass on Wednesday. The building was purchased by a developer who has assured the community that he has no plans of demolishing the church.

St. Adalbert's Church was one of the first Polish churches in Chicago. It was founded in 1874. In June 2019, the Archdiocese of Chicago announced that the church would permanently close on July 15, 2019.

According to one of the participants of the last ceremony, “the church was packed with people. Many [were] amazed at the excellent condition of St. Adalbert. The service had many moving moments, including this performance of Ave Maria.”

The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Chicago put it up for sale last autumn, and the building was purchased by a developer. Meanwhile, the Polish community has raised concerns over the issue and organised a protest at the Chicago city hall.

Followers had been raising money to buy the church and set up a pilgrimage centre there, however, according to local media, a developer offered more, and eventually paid USD 4 mln for the church.

As the developer continues to assure the Polish community that he has no plans of tearing the church down, members of the community are disappointed with the Chicago cardinal’s stance, as he did not consult the decision to close the parish with his followers.