See you in church – or in this case it could be four churches, if you plan on attending a trolley tour of Riverside and North Riverside churches on Sunday, Sept. 23.
The tour is the second sponsored by the Riverside/North Riverside Covenant of Churches, which previously sponsored a tour of four other area churches. This is a chance to learn about the different churches, with church leaders on hand to answer questions, see the buildings and learn some of the history.
So before you board the trolley, here is a preview of what you will see. The trolley will leave the Sts. Peter and Paul Lutheran Church parking lot (the church is at 250 Woodside Road) at 1 p.m. so come on board.
During a stop at Mater Christi Church, located at 2431 10th Ave. in North Riverside, you will learn the parish was originally a mission church of St. Mary’s Parish in Riverside.
As the area grew Father Murphy of St. Mary’s was directed to establish the new parish. For two years Masses were held at Komarek School. Ground breaking took place in February 1952 and the church was dedicated on June 28, 1953. The church was named Mater Christi, Mother of Christ. Adjacent to the building is the Mother of Mothers Shrine, which has a worldwide following.
The Riverside Presbyterian Church at 116 Barrypoint Road, was first known as the “stone chapel,” a non-denominational church built by the Riverside Improvement Company circa 1870.
The chapel was shared by the local Presbyterians and Episcopalians until about 1872, when 15 charter members named it the Riverside Presbyterian Church. Fire struck the chapel in 1879 and it was rebuilt in 1880 with plans by the architect John C. Cochrane.
It would not be the first time fire would damage the church but you’ll learn more on the tour.
St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, established in 1871 at 60 Akenside Road in Riverside, held its first services at the Riverside Hotel. With money for a new building and plans donated by architect William LeBaron Jenney, the congregation laid the cornerstone on July 2, 1883. Construction delays had the congregation waiting for the first liturgy until June 24, 1888.
Sts. Peter and Paul Church, where your tour will begin and end, was established in 1955 and was home for many Slovak immigrants from the Pilsen area. They celebrated their first liturgy on May 12, 1957.
Tickets for the tour are available for $10 and available at the St. Mary’s Rectory, 126 Herrick Road in Riverside. They will also be available the day of the event for $12. Tour hours are from 1 to 3 p.m.