I came across this mainstay of Manhattan just before 5 pm yesterday, as large bells called worshippers to the services about to begin. With the light not putting the entrance to St. Anthony of Padua Church at its best advantage at that time of day, I decided instead to shoot this statue of the structure’s patron saint.
Built in 1886, this church at Houston and Sullivan Streets may have been the first church constructed by an Italian community in the United States, but the first baby baptized there was Irish (Elizabeth Kelly) and its architect English (Arthur Crook).
No matter: even with a more ethnically mixed congregation, it remains inextricably a part of the Italian-American community here, especially during the feast that takes its name from the saint.
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