Historic Milwaukee Basilica will receive funds for restoration


One of Milwaukee’s most iconic sites, the Basilica of St. Josaphat, will move forward with costly restorations in part to due to grants from a new $14 million fund to assist churches.

The Basilica will use the funds for masonry work, repairs to the roof and fixing the historic stained-glass windows. The Basilica’s foundation has been raising money for these repairs for six months and it has been placed on the National Register of Historic Places and a state-based historic site as well.

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports:

The Basilica of St. Josaphat is one of 14 worship spaces named to receive grants from a new $14 million fund to assist churches in need of restoration and repair.

The century-old church is in need of $7.5 million in repairs to preserve the masonry and roof, and fix the historic stained-glass windows. The St. Josaphat Basilica Foundation began raising money  in May.

The new grant program, announced in a news release Tuesday, is a collaboration between Partners for Sacred Places and the National Trust for Historic Preservation.

The designation means the church will have access to support and other services through the fund and be eligible for a planning grant. The idea is to get all the congregations in a place to apply for up to $250,000 in capital grants through the fund. The next step is not competitive, said Chad Martin from Partners for Sacred Spaces. The fund wants to help each congregation customize a grant application to fit the church’s needs.

The basilica is on the National Register of Historic Places, and is a Wisconsin Historic Site and a designated landmark in Milwaukee. More than 50,000 people visit the basilica each year. Since beginning the capital campaign in May, the church has made some emergency repairs, including replacing some of the building’s damaged sandstone facade.

For more on these historic repairs, visit Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

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