Massachusetts Historical Commission - 2009 Preservation Award Winners
Church of the Advent • Boston (Beacon Hill)
 
Church of the Advent - Boston (Beacon Hill)

Rehabilitation & Restoration

Designed in 1874 and completed in 1888, the Church of the Advent is a prominent structure in Boston’s Beacon Hill Historic District. The Gothic Revival-style church was designed by parishioner John Hubbard Sturgis, a renowned Boston architect. The church has been enhanced over the years by the work of other accomplished artists and architects. More than 120 years of use amid a busy urban setting left the exterior of the building in need of restoration. Little or no work had been done on the masonry since the church was built, and the exterior was accumulating soot. Pieces of stone were also falling from the walls and the spire. Beginning in 2004, the parishioners of the Church of the Advent undertook a remarkable fundraising campaign, raising $3.5 million to restore the building’s exterior and stained-glass windows. The rehabilitation project fully repointed the masonry and replaced damaged sandstone with newly quarried stone taken from the original source, Wallace Quarries in Nova Scotia. Stained-glass windows were carefully restored. This project was so well received by parishioners that they have been inspired to begin raising the $3 million necessary for an interior restoration of the church as well. The rehabilitation and restoration of the Church of the Advent has revitalized the exterior of this Beacon Hill landmark and represents an extraordinarily successful preservation project completed by an active and enthusiastic parish.

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