Take a journey and experience the glorious architecture of the massive cathedrals, private chapels and synagogues around the city. Tour the grand gestures as well as the intimate spaces. More than bricks and mortar, each building represents Pittsburgh’s history, ethnic traditions, and beliefs.
Calvary United Methodist Church
Calvary is as interesting and inspiring as any of the finest Cathedrals in Europe. Elaborately decorated spires, louvers, gargoyles, geometric designs, St. Andrews Crosses, angelic faces carved into the Cleveland bluestone and vaulted oak ceilings are just some of the architectural features that have captured the imagination of art critics and historians alike.
St. Nicholas Roman Catholic Church
The walls and ceiling of St. Nicholas Croatian Catholic Church are decorated with elaborate tempera paintings by artist Maxo Vanka (1890-1963). The murals tell the story of the Croatian peasants who left their native farm lands at the turn of the 20th century to seek a better life in the post-industrial United States of America.
St. Paul’s Cathedral
The twin spires of St. Paul’s Roman Catholic Cathedral have become prominent objects in Pittsburgh’s Oakland neighborhood. The majesty of the building’s limestone Victorian façade is matched by an interior featuring color-saturated stained glass windows, intricately carved religious ornamentation and splendid wood work.
Heinz Memorial Chapel
This beautiful neo-gothic, non-denominational chapel, was built in honor of H.J. Heinz’ mother and is a part of the University of Pittsburgh – an amazing Pittsburgh story. Although the hand-carved stone and woodwork is extraordinary, nothing can compare to the 250,000 individual pieces of exquisite stained glass, which stand 73-feet-high.
Located in Downtown Pittsburgh, Trinity was the first Gothic structure built in the city. Explore their sliver of a cemetery, which once contained over 4,000 graves and stretched an entire city block. The last burial was in 1853 – a Whiskey Rebellion militiaman and the father of Stephen Foster’s lyricist.
Rodef Shalom Synagogue
Pittsburgh’s grandest and the first American synagogue powerful enough to host a former President of the United States. Formed in 1855, Rodef Shalom includes America’s only Biblical gardens on the temple grounds, growing plants specifically mentioned in the Bible, while being tended to by a Holocaust survivor.