You are here

St. Athanasius Greek Orthodox Church (Universalist Church) and Pleasant Street Congregational Church

-A A +A
Universalist Church
1841; 1860, Thomas W. Silloway. 735 Massachusetts Ave. 1844, F. F. Low. 75 Pleasant St.
  • Universalist Church (later St. Athanasius, then Highrock Covenant Church) (Keith Morgan)

Two churches in Arlington Center represent the challenge to Congregational hegemony after the Revolution. The First Parish Church was taken over by Unitarians in 1828. The dissenters who remained true to Congregational doctrine constructed the Orthodox (later Pleasant Street) Congregational Church, still an impressive Greek Revival structure despite alterations. More impressive and intact is the Universalist Church, an 1841 frame building that was moved back from the street and enlarged in 1860 by Universalist minister and prolific church architect the Reverend Thomas W. Silloway. The entrance pavilion and tower (minus a steeple destroyed in a hurricane in 1938) distinguish the main elevation of what became the St. Athanasius Greek Orthodox Church.

Both churches are now occupied by other congregations. In 2005, St. Athanasius relocated to the former St. James the Apostle Roman Catholic Church at 4 Appleton Street. Its previous location at 735 Massachusetts Avenue is now home to the Highrock Covenant Church. Pleasant Street Congregational Church is now home to the Boston Church of Christ, which uses the building as one of its satellite facilities.

Writing Credits

Keith N. Morgan
Updated By: 
Catherine Boland Erkkila (2022)



  • 1841

    Universalist Church built (later St. Athanasius)
  • 1844

    Orthodox (later Pleasant Street) Congregational Church built
  • 1860

    Universalist Church enlarged

What's Nearby


Keith N. Morgan, "St. Athanasius Greek Orthodox Church (Universalist Church) and Pleasant Street Congregational Church", [Arlington, Massachusetts], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

If SAH Archipedia has been useful to you, please consider supporting it.

SAH Archipedia tells the story of the United States through its buildings, landscapes, and cities. This freely available resource empowers the public with authoritative knowledge that deepens their understanding and appreciation of the built environment. But the Society of Architectural Historians, which created SAH Archipedia with University of Virginia Press, needs your support to maintain the high-caliber research, writing, photography, cartography, editing, design, and programming that make SAH Archipedia a trusted online resource available to all who value the history of place, heritage tourism, and learning.